All kinds of awesome things happen to me because I live in Cleveland. Others are seeing it too—my favorite line from the Beard awards reception Monday, slightly boozy but true nonetheless: "Cleveland is happening!" the California girl shouted to me. "Cleveland is on the cusp of greatness!"
Earlier in the year a company called Sideways called me saying they were fans and cooks and wanted to create a template for an "Author App," basically a fan app that allows people interested in an author to access everything he or she has to offer, in quick seamless fashion. I was game and I knew that my passionate, occasionally disturbed follow, would find it interesting. Watch the video above, download it FREE from iTunes.
It is, of course, the irony of fate that I would introduce this iPhone app two days after leaving my own damned iPhone in the back of a taxi.
Would love to know what you think. Don't be shy. Frankly I am—so I'm a tad self-conscious about this. A long time ago, when I was visiting a friend's parents' house, my friend pointed into the room of his prominent father, a 2-star general. It had medals, and photos of the general with famous people. My friend said, "This is my dad's I-love-myself room." I don't want my app to seem like an I-love-myself room. As most know, I'm giving the new media a great bear hug. Also, I want other people to know about this cool Cleveland startup, Sideways.com, founded by entrepreneur Charles Stack, and moving forward fast (look for there digital magazine for the ipad, devoted to the ipad and iphone soon; I hope to be doing a digital cooking column in it). It officially launches at Book Expo later this month in NYC.
One of the features that I particularly like is the map, but it's a work in progress. I'm able to update it and am especially eager to. For instance, I had a great meal at Locanda Verde, kitchen lead by Cleveland boy, Andrew Carmellini (he's got a terrific book out called Urban Italian, which he wrote with his wife). I can put up a little knife and fork symbol about it. People ask me where to eat in Cleveland. Now I can point them to my map. I can already see that I need to update it with the great meals I had in Portland. Maybe I can include other people's favorites in cities I'm about to visit.
Authors who may read this, publishers of authors, and chefs who have multiple platforms such as books, shows, appearances, etc., I'm happy to forward email queries to the appropriate folks if you're curious. And look for their digital magazines later this month.