Hey, Weren’t You Writing a Book?

I know, I’ve been remiss about not updating all of you on the Heroic Technical Writing book. I am pleased to report that after much foot dragging and some legitimate delays, I am 62% of the way through the second round of edits–these are organizational revisions, which require more free time and quiet because I have to reread the whole manuscript to ensure that the new order of content makes sense from the transition and flow points of view. I have other activities to address, but I believe I’m on track to get the electronic version into the hands of a publisher (online, at least) by the middle of this year.

Other Updates/Things to Do

My editor and I had a little back-and-forth discussion about formatting. For example, she had a different preference for spelling out numerals vs. using numbers. I also had some lists of recommended reading that needed to be put in a reasonable order. We even had a chat about grammar. Such are the exciting issues to deal with as one is working with a professional–there’s always a bit of negotiation. I’m so pleased that Betty agreed to edit my work, though. She was my favorite editor when I worked at NASA and she remains an ace in her field. She’s now writing her own novels, so I’m definitely paying her for her valuable time. And if I didn’t take 99% of her edits, I’d be wasting the opportunity to improve my product.

I also need to look into the marketing of this book. I need to add a page to this blog so you folks can find and buy the text…and I need to figure out the best ways/places to position the book to be bought. Recommendations welcome!

Lastly, there’s the decision about how I want the book delivered. At the advice of one friend, I was only going to do an electronic publication. However, after talking with a friend whose book I just edited, it turns out that I might, in fact, be able to get a print version as well without having to go through a traditional publisher. I’m still mulling that. Heroic Technical Writing is likely to be used in classrooms, and a lot of schools are moving toward electronic books, which would render my affection for paper moot. It would be kind of neat to have something I could sign, though, yes? 🙂

There are consequences to adding a print edition. I need to add/do the following:

  • Pay for another ISBN. I only have numbers for the electronic version right now.
  • Pay the cover artist to add design work for the binding and back cover.
  • Acquire readers to provide a (hopefully supportive) blurb on the back cover.

Anyhow, the process continues.

About Bart Leahy

Freelance Technical Writer, Science Cheerleader Event & Membership Director, and an all-around nice guy. Here to help.
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1 Response to Hey, Weren’t You Writing a Book?

  1. Pingback: Book Marketing | Heroic Technical Writing: Advice and Insights on the Business of Technical Communication

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