Wouldn’t It Be Awesome If I Was A Developer Who Could Program My Own Freaking Ideas??

I’ve been extremely occupied with edits for my second novel, “Nothing Ventured,” this week.  And I thought there was no creativity left in my overworked brain to pour into the old entrepreneurial arsenal.  Thoughts of Mia and Chris incessantly swarm my mind and my sole focus is to finesse their love story to the satisfaction of my editor.  In fact, I think I’ve dreamed in italicized subtitles for the past few nights.

I didn’t think I had anything left.

But then I came up with..ta-da!!!!  An idea.

In my past life, like a waaaaay long time ago, I was responsible for putting together business requirements for system development projects.  Of course there were endless Microsoft Word doc templates available for this exercise, with tables of contents so long they’d rival the length of the actual document.

I’m exaggerating. Kind of.  =)

But then software packages were developed to simplify the process and analysts could input their requirements into a program and answer a whole slew of questions that would translate into a section of the overall deliverable.  The software package would tie all the components together and take the work out of building the narrative.  Analysts input the pertinent information, the software does the rest.

Not that I’m suggesting authors write books with this type of software but think about applying this concept to the editing process.  Developmental edits are a huge pain.  If an author needs to move chunks of a manuscript around, it becomes very tedious to track all the downstream changes.  Plus, sometimes an author may want to “test” a scene out in a different location but wants to see how it might impact the overall story WITHOUT messing everything up.

A software package that could help with this process would be super useful.  Instead, authors (read: ME) end up saving multiple versions of the manuscript, trying to test out various scenarios and often forgetting which one is the gold copy.  To mitigate the risk of THAT, my titles are normally something like this…

NothingVentured v1.12.3.4 ChrisGetsDrunkMiaGoesOverboard.docx

Not confusing at all, right?

 

What’s Inside Your Closet??

How many times have you spotted someone who’s rocking a killer pair of booties or swinging around the most delectable piece of arm candy you can imagine? How about catching a glimpse of someone who just really knows how to piece together an awesome outfit? Someone whose style you’re just dying to emulate?

I came across an article in Venture Beat for a brand-new digital concept in fashion. Poshmark, in Menlo Park, CA, is launching a women’s fashion marketplace in app form where members can follow the closets of fellow fashionistas and buy coveted items at up to 70% off retail. No longer do you need to chase after these style mavens at the mall! LOL, am I the only one who actually does this and looks like a crazed stalker in the process??

Courtesy of Venture Beat

Courtesy of Venture Beat

It’s fabulous, socialization of looks and trends for fashion lovers! You can even sell your own wares!  Based on your tastes and closet browsing history, you’ll get a feed from the app that connects you to your fave designer duds and style icons. When you follow others or make purchases from their closets or other retailers, the app will craft your own unique Style Genome. And the best part is that you can have a split fashion personality – boho and preppy, glam and grunge…you’ll never be pigeon-holed into one category again!

Absolutely BRILLIANT concept. And they’ve gotten millions upon millions from angel investors like Aston Kutcher and Rachel Zoe to prove it.

 

 

I Got Sucked In…And Then Suffocated In Lena Dunham’s Horrific Ruffled Tiers

Courtesy of en.wikipedia.org

Courtesy of en.wikipedia.org

I dozed off on the couch earlier.  It felt soooo good…until Hubby pounced on me, demanding that I give the kids a bath.  Just to let you know, I loathe bath time.  It entails a lot of splashing, yelling, screaming, and SPLASHING.  And I just don’t have patience, not when I was up at 4:30 AM and on a bus to NYC shortly afterwards. Nope.  Not in the mood.  At ALL.

Instead, I wanted to stay plastered in front of the TV, watching the Emmys.  Why?  Because I get sucked in by the fashion…most of which leaves me scratching my head, mumbling, “What the eff was she THINKING?  And how the hell does her stylist get work?  Do Hollywood stylists need to pass a test for having the absolute worst taste EVER?”

Case in point…Lena Dunham, WHY???  You know the phrase “there are no words?”  Well, in this case, there are too MANY to list.  Let the photo speak for itself.

Courtesy of TODAY.com

Courtesy of TODAY.com

Kerry Washington, however, is absolutely stunning.  I adore her dress, especially the blingy shorts underneath.  So awesome.  Orange is totally the new black.  =)

Courtesy of HuffingtonPost.com

Courtesy of HuffingtonPost.com

And Sarah Silverman…before you rushed the stage to accept your award, you must have said a prayer that your boobies didn’t slip out of that freaking ugly excuse for a dress.  And you’re so classy too, showing off your marijuana vaporizer pen to the world.  Seriously?  What the hell is this world coming to?

Courtesy of PerezHilton.com

Courtesy of PerezHilton.com

Build Your Own Virtual Reality Porn Star!

Okay, so this idea is a bit risqué but it’s got HUGE potential.

How would you like to download an app that let’s you construct your own porn star…and when you’ve customized him or her exactly to your liking (or lusting, as the case may be), you upload your own photo and boom!  You simulate your own…well, YOU know.  =)

Now I see this as more of a guy’s fantasy.  Yes, Im generalizing.  Sue me.  Hair color, eye color, skin tone, body type – everything is customizeable AND photorealistic.  A 3D virtual reality porn star who will do everything and anything you command.

I Googled my idea.  No such apps exist.  Score!  But there is a video game idea that comes awfully close, courtesy of StartUp Daily author, Tasnuva Bindi (Design Your Own Porno:  Programmer Introduces The 3D Virtual Reality Porn Star, 1/2014). The main differentiator between this programmer’s idea and my idea is the level of interaction.

In his video game, the porn star performs acts which are then viewed by some horny user who does…well, I don’t need to get specific here, right?  We’re all adults.

In my app, the horny user can upload his own photo and the system will simulate him…ahem…engaging with his carefully crafted leading lady, complete with double Ds and whatever else turns him on.

It’s a surefire winner.  =)

Courtesy of Startup Daily

Courtesy of Startup Daily

 

 

“Unlikely Venture” Giveaway! Enter To Win A $25 Amazon Gift Card!

I feel like I’ve promoted the launch of “Unlikely Venture” for a while and even though November is still a few months away, there’s sooooo much to do!  Luckily, I’m working with a fabulous team of talented people who’ve been guiding me through the process and I’m so thankful for all their advice and guidance!

This is a super-exciting time and I’m enjoying every minute!

So let’s celebrate with a Rafflecopter giveaway!

A couple of clicks and you can win a $25 Amazon gift card!  It’s so simple to enter!  Follow me on Twitter, like me on Facebook, sign up for my mailing list, friend me on Booktropolous Social…lots of ways to win!

And how could I forget the synopsis…

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Unlikely Venture

Here’s the thing about keeping secrets…they can only protect you for so long before threatening to destroy everything you hold dear.

Meet Jessica Latham:  a bright, sassy, workaholic with a penchant for plunging necklines and Christian Louboutin stilettos.  She has her dream job at the top management consulting firm in Manhattan, but it is coupled with the daily nightmare of an overbearing and demeaning boss who consistently undermines her abilities and challenges her at every turn.

And that’s the least of her problems.

Devastating news threatens her livelihood and sends her fiancé running for the hills without so much as a backward glance.  Newly single and fearful about her future, she focuses on work to escape the looming uncertainty…until a moment of weakness changes everything.  During a night tinged with one too many glasses of chardonnay, she meets Paul Emerson, a mysterious stranger who becomes an eager and willing participant in Jessica’s efforts to finally regain some control of her life.

It was supposed to be an isolated incident, something she subconsciously needed to restore her confidence and clear her head.  But what Jessica soon realizes is that taking control doesn’t always mean she is actually the one in control and things don’t always turn out as planned.

After being awarded a coveted opportunity at work, Jessica thought she was headed for a much-deserved promotion and some degree of stability.  But she didn’t anticipate meeting James Callahan, MIT-graduate-turned-start-up-CEO and she certainly didn’t expect for Paul to walk back into her life.  The internal struggle intensifies when threats to her future resurface.  Her worlds collide when everything Jessica thought was important is pitted against everything she wants for the future and she needs to quickly get her head and her heart in sync before somebody gets hurt.

Download Your Own Sleepover Pal!

On Saturday night, I reached a milestone in my parenting career. I knew the day would come when I would run out of excuses… Lulu hosted her very first sleepover.

This was a monumental event, folks. Lots of prep time and a slight bit of panic on my part since sleepovers are all about the execution – snacks, activities, movies, snacks, games, American Girl dolls, SNACKS.  You get the idea. I wanted to bring my A-game to this soiree. So we went to a fabulous kid-loving dinner at Friendly’s, where I participated in a binge fest filled with hamburgers, chicken fingers and a delicious Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup sundae. I’m still nauseous thinking about it.  But damn, it was GOOD!

Once we got home, I figured they wanted to just do their own thing, right?  Who wants Mom hovering?? So I put on a movie and all five of the kids watched and played together. Then ate again?!?!

But they quickly exhausted all of their entertainment options. They were bored by the movie, bored with their dolls, and bored with their iDevices.   That’s when they came to me. At ten o’clock at night!  I just wanted to do my nails and go to sleep.

“Mom, we’re bored. What should we DO?”

“Lulu, what about…” I rattled off a million and one ideas and the verdict was bore, bored, and BORING!!!!!

What the heck???

And…LIGHTBULB!

The Sleepover Pal!   It’s an interactive app that generates a virtual sleepover companion for your kids. It would have a unique name, face and voice (all customizable). Your kids can craft their pal however they want.

Courtesy of spongebob.wikia.com

Courtesy of spongebob.wikia.com

 

Parents can select a scope of activities that they want offered to their kids for the event and the Sleepover Pal will execute!  The same ideas I offered up would be so much more enticing if they came from an app, don’t you think?

The Sleepover Pal can come up with age-appropriate conversation topics, use pop culture references, teach the kids how to play new games, tell jokes, whatever activities that the parent selects!  Parents can enter the names of all the kids so the pal can address everyone directly. Artificial intelligence at it’s best.  It’s freaking BRILLIANT, right???

The Sleepover Pal will be the chief coordinator of the sleepover. All for the bargain price of…..FREE??? Jeez, if this app existed I might have caved a lot sooner… =)

Are You Risk-Averse Or Risk-Embracing??

I’m so charged up right now!  I have the best freaking idea and I’m so excited to work on it!!!

I LOVE channeling my inner creative spirit!  Sometimes it goes into overdrive.  It’s like I can’t stop it.  LOL, do you get the reference?  The Girl Next Door??  Elisha Cuthbert, former porn star, Emile Hirsch, her younger, sex-starved neighbor??

Anyway, big ideas usually come with equally large risks, and not all of them are financial.

For example, if you’re going to dive head-first into a new venture, is your Hubby going to freak out about piling on the debt to get your idea off the ground?  Since he only has his past experiences to draw upon, things might not look too promising for you. Crikey, am I ever going to redeem myself???

Is the risk of an ugly divorce worth all the effort?

Of course, if you’re a gambling person in need of startup funding you could always put your investment on black and roll the dice in hopes of making the rest.  It COULD work…

One defense mechanism you definitely need in your arsenal to overcome said risks is P-A-S-S-I-O-N.  Do you know why?  Passion won’t pay the bills but it’ll drive you towards getting your idea out there and perfecting it so that everyone immediately gets the value proposition.  That creates D-E-M-A-N-D.  And then follows the $$$$$.

See a need, fill a need!  Wow, I’m full of movie references today!

Ever see the movie Robots?  If you’re an inventor/innovator/entrepreneur, you should watch it.  It totally inspires you to get out there and find ways to make the world a better place!  Seriously!  How apropos for a kiddie flick.

Courtesy of Wikipedia

Courtesy of Wikipedia

My idea is fabulous because it is a game-changer!  It’s disruptive!  I had my “ah-ha” moment.  And it was AWESOME!

There has to be an observed need for an idea to gain traction.  And it can’t just exist solely for your own personal purposes.  You have to solve for pain points of the masses.  Making your own life less complicated is nice in theory but it won’t earn you any awards.  Think BIGGER!!!!

Ask the question – can my idea make lives easier?  If so, HOW?  That’s all part of the value prop, too.  And if there’s perceived value, there’s perceived benefit, both worthy of serious financial gains!

It’s such an exciting prospect…to smash out of the box (I’m imagining the Hulk now, kiddies are watching The Avengers).  But make yourself a promise…absolutely love the idea because if you don’t, nobody else will.

 

This Jersey Girl Loves Rocky Mountain Pizza!!! Must Be The Nutmeg…

Are you ready to hear my super-cool brush with fame?

So, while watching “The Internship” the other night, I was inspired to share one of my favorite clips from the movie.  Then I tweeted it.  Hashtagged it to DEATH.

And then, something insane happened.  One of the actors in the movie picked up on one of the hashtags and tweeted me!

So now, Bruno Amato (Sal, the very proud owner of Rocky Mountain Pizza) is chatting “on the line” with yours truly!!!  Turns out that he also plays Coach Simmons in “Austin and Ally“, another fan fave in the Luciani household.

How small is this world??

Sal & The Interns on iMDB (Because They Won’t Let Me Snag The Picture!)

Bruno also mentioned that he’s going to be acting alongside Jennifer Aniston in “Horrible Bosses 2” as a police officer/sex addict.  He didn’t tell me that last bit, I looked it up on iMDB.  LOL!

And because we’re old pals now, Bruno (@LIBERAL_ACTOR) let me share one of his own pics from Twitter!

Nice To Have Or Need To Have? Don’t Count On Mom To Make The Final Call

I came across a great article on Silicon Moon about how to most effectively gauge market interest in your product or service.  The original article was posted to Venture Beat.

Key question – Does it disrupt the numbing normalcy that we’ve grown used to in our daily lives?  Because if it doesn’t, there’s no market for it.  Period.  So, pick a new hobby.  Seriously.

Have you ever heard of the Mom test? A great article on The Startup Toolkit says that you should never run an idea past your mother because in her eyes, everything her child does is fabulous, therefore she’s not in a place to poke holes in it.  And if the idea stinks, she won’t be honest with you for fear of crippling your creativity and drive.

Not the case with my mom.  She’s probably the ugliest friend I have.  She shoots holes in EVERYTHING.  It doesn’t matter that I’m her daughter.  That never stops her from voicing her opinions.  That’s pretty much the opposite of the typical motherly response.

Jeez, it would be nice if she threw me a bone now and then.  She could preserve the remaining few shreds of my self-confidence.

Here’s another interesting point…even if you have the OMG idea, if you’re not passionate about it, it’ll still be a hard sell.  Because really, if you can’t believe in your product, no matter how good it is, how can you create a need for it?

It’s difficult.  Think about it, people who are super-dedicated to their efforts have a kind of contagious enthusiasm about them.  It can make the idea seem better than it may actually be, just because they are so driven.  Don’t get me wrong…it’s not going to apply to EVERY idea out there just because someone’s excited about it.  A person can be passionate about an organic edible handbag but that doesn’t mean people are going to actually buy it (or eat it, for that matter).

Am I right?

 

Steamy Teaser Alert For Unlikely Venture!

I love these teasers SO much!  They breathe life into my characters, even though I’ve been involved with them for quite some time!

I’m super excited, can you tell???

November can’t come fast enough!!!!

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