Eye of the Storm

Yesterday (Monday, 12/29), I sent Wiley the last quarter of my latest book, Digital Photography for Seniors for Dummies (really). I just finished my second book in 6 months; my third book in 2 years. (I finished Windows Vista Solutions just before going to a New Year’s Eve party.)

Given that I completed Digital Cameras & Photography for Dummies in less than 6 weeks, this latest book, on a related topic, was an easier task. In fact, 3 weeks ago, I imagined I might finish a week ahead of schedule – which was already moved up a week. But, a 3 week cold wrecked my sleep, and I had a class to teach, so, I had to be content with finishing on the deadline, not before.

But finish isn’t the word. Hurricane watchers know that the eerie calm isn’t the end of the storm, but the eye. Indeed, the trailing edge of a hurricane is fiercer than the leading edge, albeit shorter. (Anyone over 30 knows the second half of anything is shorter than the first half.) The part of the storm yet to come is Author Review, in which I reread every word I’ve written along with all the questions, corrections, and comments inserted by the copy editor, the technical editor, and the development editor. (It is a rainbow of Word revision marks.) It is a time to suppress ego and to avoid argument, to seek a better way to explain things. Reviewing a chapter might take one hour or four. I’m expecting to spend 40 hours on the task, which will include recreating every single figure because I was slow to understand the original figure requirements. (Seems the previous project taught me bad habits.)

As I await the first wave of Author Review, I’ve rearranged some furniture (singularly pleasing), vacuumed, and, even written a blog entry. It may be another week or two before the next. In the meantime, Happy New Calendar! peace, mjh


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