I thought writing a book would be hard.
I didn’t realize finishing it would be even worse.
We pick up last September 2018 when I wrote a blog about writing a book, and finished it with the words “And now it’s done all bar the shouting”.
Flash forward just over a year.
One more word.
Its more than a year later, and its only now finished, and awaiting publication.
So whats been happening over the last year that made it take so long??
Well, over the last year or so I have been on a roller coaster up and down to get this far.
Talk about one hundred and fifty ways to not finish a book, and just put your life on hold instead.
Here you go for the bunch of ways I came up with to avoid finishing the book, but it’s nearly done now!
- Do a TEDx speech about the core subject of your book – but do it in French just to make it extra hard.
- Move countries, go back to live where I grew up for the first time in 30 years, and move in with my parents.
- Move into my own place, welcome the cats home from Europe, and then spend the first three days trying to stop the cats from disappearing up the chimney. (Not directly book relevant, but the memory makes me smile).
- Do a second TEDx speech – and ok this time you can do it in English.
- Get a copy editor to finish the editing but completely rewrite sections in it because my TEDx speeches have made my ideas even clearer and I have tested some of the book content even further.
- Press “go” on the manuscript so the design can be done.
- Choose a font and layout. Wtf? I want a book font and a book layout – who knew that was a thing? Choosing it all means printing out six different templates, looking at them all together, taking a leap of faith.
- Decide what I want the cover to look like – send off examples to show the designer what I like – get the design back and realize I like something completely different. Thank god she is an amazing designer and knew what I would like before I did.
- Agree on the cover design but then decide I don’t like the title of the book.
- Change title and subtitle after about two weeks and five different versions.
- Show finalized design, title and subtitle to some random guy at the gym – who then asks a perfectly fair question, which makes me think the title and subtitle are completely useless, so back to the drawing board.
- Get the pdf version of the interior of the book and print the whole book out for the first time. 230 pages – wow.
- Show the printed version to my parents. “Wow says mum, I love the first chapter. “ “Jo”, says dad, “ do you want any feedback on the grammar and spelling?” “No, I bloody don’t dad”, but thanks for asking.
- Book interior done and now ready to upload. What colour paper do you want – white or beige? What finish do you want on the cover – matte or glossy? Who even knew that was a thing too??
- Now it’s the turn of the hardback – do you want the cover printed on the hard back or do you want a dust cover? Well I don’t bloody know – can someone decide for me?
- Ok let’s do dust-cover – “what do you want on the inside flaps of the dust-cover? You have more space now you can put more.” “It already took me forever to write for the paper back let’s not try to write more”
- “Do you want a photo on the dust-cover?” “No, I bloody don’t want a photo”. “Oh, you should really have a photo.” “Oh, for God’s sake I’ll give you a photo then”
- Decide to do my first ever bit of promotion for the book, and announce on Facebook and LinkedIn that my book will be out 1 October.
- Let’s get a hard copy printed so I can get it in my hands.
- The hard copy has arrived at my parents but I’m in Luxembourg – shit I need to wait.
- “I’m home now let’s open the parcel”. “How many copies have you sold?”, says dad. “None this is the only that exists.”
- Read through the hard copy. Looks great, but wait a minute maybe I should double check that thing – now I want to make final tweaks
- Have a complete fear fest meltdown – no one is going to read it, or if they do, they’ll think I’m a moron for writing about this. I write about fear in my book. I should probably read my own book.
- My editor shows the patience of a saint in between the eye rolls that I can hear over the phone.
- 1 October has come and gone. Trying not to think I look like a fool because I missed my own publication deadline. People are asking when the thing will be out. Wish I knew.
- My dad is out spreading the word of my book, and encouraging every Tom, Dick and Sally to buy the book. Thanks dad, I just need to publish it now 🙂
- Oh, wait a minute I’m starting to get reviews in from folk who are reading early copies of the pdf. They seem to be liking it. Hmmm. Promising. Don’t believe the first one in – they are clearly just saying that to be nice. But by the fourth or fifth person saying they like it I’m believing that they are being honest.
- Finalise the last changes and breathe easy cos I have done everything I can. Anymore tweaks and it will start to lose its essence.
- Get the changes back from the designer, but unfortunately somewhere along the way (because in my fear fest the comments and instructions I sent were written in some kind of don’t-tell-me-you-are-not-telepathic speak – mea completely culpa) half the end sources have been deleted by mistake, so I need to go back in and put them in again.
- It’s now ready to go – the ebook is validated on the publishing platform and will pop up on amazon at some point. The hard copy of the amended paper and hard back versions are on the way to me.
- The books still haven’t arrived and are currently on the UK mainland (like, you need to add an extra day because I am on the island of Ireland), but I figure I need to let people know whats taking so long, and thank them for their patience ….
So, thank you 😊 It will be here soon. Promise!