We’re three weeks in to the New Caracas Chronicles. How are we doing? For me, editing it all has been a pretty wild ride. It’s been both way more work and way more fun than I could’ve guessed.
Our call for new contributors has brought out a mad explosion of talent: an amazing array of new writers has come forward with just incredible expertise on just about everything. It’s been…well, it’s been humbling. Like riding this tsunami of ideas, perspectives and passions. Amazing!
New Voices have helped deepen our coverage of the stuff Caracas Chronicles has always been obsessed with: Guillermo Quiroga, Daniel Urdaneta, Lissette González and Luis Scarcioffo bring amazing new insight into economics, finance and politics. Emiliana Duarte, @Econ_Vzla and Luis Ernesto Zambrano rocked the new Legislative Elections Forecasting App.
But the part that I’ve found most exciting is all the new people writing about entirely new kinds of topics.
From first hand accounts of Nicaragua in the late 1980s to tips on how to beat the lines at Mercal in Ciudad Guayana, going through everything from the nuts and bolts of the power blackouts, why oil production is stagnating, how you brand a hipster café in Maracaibo, how you burgle a Human Rights Defender while maintaining deniability, how you exploit a bolivar-earning techie, to the semiotics of the video selfie what a real Rafael Cadenas poem is like, how Venezuela’s colonial economy worked and whether or not La Simón can be an engine of social mobility.
Every post has been a labor of love, every one the product of an involved, intensive editing process together with the writers. It’s been dizzying!
(And remember, if you want to join this gang, it’s not too late: we’d love for you to apply.)
Behind the scenes, our indefatigable Managing Editor Emiliana Duarte has been putting in some crazy hours to make it all come together, and Raul Stolk and Juan Cristobal Nagel have been invaluable in helping organize the torrent of new material.
What’s really exciting is that our post pipeline is positively bursting with great material – wanna know what Asdrubal Chávez yelled at Adan at a public meeting a couple of weeks ago? What happened to PDVSA’s plan to produce bio-ethanol? How the crisis is hitting brokerage houses? How the race in Lara’s este-del-este Circuito 3 is shaping up? What libertarians in Venezuela talk about when they get together? Why anyone would possibly migrate to Venezuela in the current climate? How to beat hyperinflation with BitCoins? Just keep checking back in…
We started out with this crazy dream that we could make the best, most sophisticated, most insightful and most ambitious website out there about Venezuelan public life, that we could make it in English, that we could make it work somehow. We had no good reason to think such a thing was possible.
But three weeks in…I’m starting to believe.
I want to thank all of you who’ve taken out Voluntary Subscriptions – you’ve helped us reach our first month target a week ahead of schedule! – and to gently nudge those of you putting it off to join us in this crazy adventure!
I’m sure I’ve made some mistakes these last three weeks, and I’ll doubtless make a lot more in future. I’m on a learning curve too! But we’re giving it our all, and we’re just so thankful for everyone’s support.