So, You Wanna Be Famous?A Layman’s Guide to Achieving Overnight CelebrityAsk any superstar:
Most will swear they’re blessed to enjoy such widespread success andmedia attention. But with the power that today’s Internet has totransform everyday individuals -- e.g., TechCrunch founder MichaelArrington and bitter divorcee Tricia Walsh Smith -- into overnightsensations, well … who needs serendipity when you’ve got the World WideWeb? Case in point: American Way
’s contributing editor SCOTT STEINBERG
. His recent book, Get Rich Playing Games
),cost pennies to make but has landed him guest spots on NBC, Fox, andCNN. We decided he could teach us -- and you -- a thing or two. Ifyou’re ready to take the world by storm, then heed the followingadvice, and worldwide renown will be just a click away.Shh, don’t tell Al Roker:
The way modern newsrooms operate, pen a volume on anything and you’rean instant expert. Print-on-demand services like iUniverse, Lulu.com,and Worldclay mean anyone can become a published author. And for just$500 to $600, you can even ship illustrated, professionally boundhardback volumes to Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble.Clothes make the man.
Use CafePress, Print-Mojo, or Spreadshirt to design and sell hats,jackets, tees, boxers, bodysuits, and more. Coin an especially catchyslogan or ideological statement, and runway stardom could be yours.Prove tomorrow’s Spielberg is staring back in the mirror…
It just takes a simple, budget-friendly USB camera, e.g., Logitech’sQuickCam Communicate MP ($50) or Creative’s Vado Pocket Video Cam($100). Once shot, video shorts are easily transferred to computer andfilm-sharing sites like YouTube, Viddler, or Metacafe, which attractmillions of eager viewers. Film gets discovered, and poof, you’reaccepting an Oscar come February.Want to play DJ?
Podcasts -- homemade digital audio clips created using any Mac- orPC-compatible headset ($10 and up) -- cost nothing to distribute viathe web through iTunes or Zune Marketplace. Prefer music-making? Likewitty monologues, songs can be quickly recorded using free (orwallet-friendly) programs like Audacity and Reaper. CD Baby andTuneCore offer immediate sales outlets.Need Inspiration?Just look to these online icons
Following the 1996 launch of film industry fansite Ain’t It Cool News (www.AintItCool.com
), founder Harry Knowles
quickly became a Hollywood fixture. He’s since appeared in severalpictures, starred alongside Siskel & Ebert, and recently made theForbes Web Celeb 25.
Humorist and public speaker Ze Frank
began his Webby-winning career with a simple birthday-invitation video,which spread like wildfire online, culminating in a deal with BeverlyHills’ United Talent Agency.
Stand-up comedian Dane Cook
-- a primetime regular most recently seen starring in the feature film Dan in Real Life
alongside Steve Carell -- used MySpace to captivate millions of fans and watched his prospects skyrocket.
Emo quartet Panic! At the Disco
scored a legendary record deal after they caught the ear of fellowmultimillion-dollar-selling rocker Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz, whocreated a buzz for their online demo. The band’s contract was inkedbefore the group had played one live show.