Since I was a kid, I dreamed of writing books. Of course, producing bits and pieces of epic adventures in my head has proven to be much easier than producing them on paper or a digital screen. Thankfully, a couple years ago, several colleagues joined me in producing a couple of books and the process gave me some much needed experience.
With the experience came some relief, at least in part, of the intimidation I consistently encountered (and to some extent still do) in writing a book solo, at least in regards to the majority of the content. ADD is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to writing. Once I make it into the zone all’s well. Getting there is the hard part. This isn’t just with book writing. It’s with nearly every writing project I work on that will be viewed by the public. On the bright side, I’ve been the recipient of many ongoing blessings and of those are the people God graciously places in my life who often help me learn how to overcome or find a way around obstacles.
Maria Jordan’s nudge
Maria Jordan (of marcoujor’s musings) has been both colleague and close friend for a long time now. Last year, when I decided to downsize the number of blogs and publishing dates on flashPress, Maria continued with a repetitive, gentle suggestion of taking some of the posts from the blog femme’s Desk and putting them into a book.
I considered it several times, but each time talked myself out of it due to an old journalism rule of thumb that requires news being new. The idea of putting my blog posts into books struck me as producing redundant material that readers might consider stale. However, Maria’s suggestion continued to tug at me, meshing with my compulsion to share quality, positive information and it finally won out.
Although I didn’t want to produce a huge book on one (or multiple) subject(s) from any of the blog posts I’d written previously, I realized the opportunity to expand them singularly allowed me to include more information than I’d been willing to put in a blog post.
With a little help, I’ve accomplished exactly that and I’m very thankful to Maria for continuing to present the idea to me. If not for her, the book would likely not have been written.
Evernote, Google Drive & A Little Help From Friends
There’s another book I’ve been working on for years. I’ve re-written more chapters for it than I can remember but I’ve finally made a few of them stick. In the newer, smaller book, I went at the task differently, producing a short outline of sections and listing elements that I wanted to ensure I included.
For the outline and sections of the completed book, I used Evernote and wow! It made an amazing difference, helping me stay focused and providing fast, easy access to the information I needed while writing. I can’t say enough good things about the overall function and abilities of Evernote. No wonder it’s one of the most favored and most used tools for a myriad of business and personal task assisting world-wide. Anyone I needed to give access to the contents I stored on Evernote was as easy as sharing or sending them a link to the note(s). Then, they could view, make changes to or leave chat notes for me when needed.
For the written text and images content I used Google Drive. All of the book sections were stored in a notebook there and shared with the editing and graphics design team of Maria Jordan (marcoujor’s musings), Vicki Warner of WarnerWords and graphics designer, Rita Davis of ritahicksdavis.com. They were all able to read everything I’d written, chat with me and each other, and/or leave comments and make changes to the contents within each document. It made things super-easy and efficient especially considering some of us live in different states and countries.
Using Evernote and Google Drive gained me some ground in helping whittle away at a problem I've encountered in the writing of another book. Now that I'm better equipped for the task, I've already gotten back to working on it.
Click either image to visit the corresponding webpage for Evernote or Google Drive.
The main bulk of the writing was done, believe it or not, on my 7” Digiland Android tablet and some of the technical workload was done on my 7” Windows Stream tablet. Both tablets are tiny but mighty and they allowed me to write and collaborate away from my desk without having to pack up my laptop. They’re lightweight and fit easily in my small backpack. They aren’t bulky to hold while I’m writing and they take up only a small bit of space on a restaurant table, which is where I did some of the work and collaboration with the graphic designer and local artist, Rita Hicks Davis.
Please pardon the grainy resolution. Both images are here only for size references. Also, both are in cases (and one with a keyboard) I ordered separately..
The five things I want to accomplish with this book are to...
I’m forever telling my friends and colleagues if I keep Christ Jesus at the center of my personal and professional life, neither can fail. This isn't a personal theory. It’s a time-proven standard that I've experienced over and over again. I often think of it as the gospel in action.
Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all of these things shall be added unto you. (Matthew 6:33 KJV)
I don’t always manage this but it’s a sincere request in prayer to get better and better at it every day. In praying for help with the making of the book I'm about to launch, He blessed me with the ability, the machinery, the friends and colleagues I needed to help me complete the project. They're not only a professional blessing to me, but a personal one too. God always goes above and beyond what I ask for--consistently being amazingly gracious. ☺
My hope and prayer is the culmination of our work will in turn be a blessing to you. I’ll be one of the first to let you know when copies will be available for Ebook download.
That's it for this one!
God bless you, thanks for the read and see you next week!
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marcoujor, Virtual Buskers Guild
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