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Birth of a Baby

By November 6, 2019No Comments

Completing a book has often been described as giving birth, and as one who has given birth to babies and books, I fully understand the correlation. For almost nine months I worked diligently on the second edition of Write In Style, my book on creative writing. Cardoza Publishing released the first edition through its Union Square imprint in 2004. It won three awards and eventually sold out. Cardoza then closed down its Union Square imprint in 2009 and returned the rights to my book to me. People who loved the book begged me to re-release it, but when I saw all the work it would take, I felt overwhelmed. I had written the original on a Mac computer around the turn of the century. The old Mac file not only was corrupted and full of trash, but also was not edited; my editor at Cardoza never gave me her final file.

I knew that to get the book ready for re-release I’d have to go through the file word by word, deleting the symbols, hard returns, and other trash I could not strip out easily. I also had to read each sentence in the original book and compare it to the file version, to catch things the editor had caught. I also needed to edit the revised to a higher degree plus update and expand the information for the second edition. Much of the information had changed since I wrote the first edition in 2003.

Ahmad Meradji, the owner of BookLogix, encouraged me to get my still-much-in-demand book out to the public again. Used copies were selling upwards of $150, for which I received not a penny. Ahmad cheered me on and said he would launch the second edition of Write In Style at his Publish15 convention in June. As a result I had a deadline and a plan. I set to work on the second edition almost nine months before the projected publishing date–no coincidence, when I think about it. Slowly I germinated, nurtured, loved, massaged, and grew the expanded, updated second edition of Write In Style. Repeatedly I pored over draft after draft and then proof after proof. BookLogix designed a spectacular cover for the new book, and as a team we met our deadlines and launched the second edition of Write In Style: How to Use Your Computer to Improve Your Writing on its due date, June 13, 2015. Because of last-minute pressures and close deadlines, however, the printer had time to print only fifty copies before the convention. I thought the amount to be more than enough. I was wrong. I sold out in two days and had to order more copies.

Still it was a great relief to see my books delivered. Holding the actual book in my hands for the first time was almost as endearing as holding a squalling newborn. As when I gave birth to my son, though, the published book means my work had only begun. Next began the marketing, promotions, and order fulfillment. Thankfully BookLogix is handling some of the order fulfillment and Amazon is handling most of it, depending on which website people use to order the book.

Bobbie Christmas

Editor Bobbie Christmas is your book doctor. She can also be your mentor, ghostwriter, copywriter, and writing and publishing consultant. After spending decades writing and editing for a living, Bobbie became a much-sought-after seminar and workshop leader. She began Zebra Communications in 1992 in Atlanta, Georgia, to provide professional editing services to publishers and to writers like you.

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