Thursday, February 27, 2014

My new book compilation - More Words Written Down

Well, I wrote another book. After in March 2012 self-publishing a compilation culled from of 3 1/2 years of blog posts and then in October 2012 a compilation of book review blog posts, I've now written and have available on Amazon in both print and Kindle versions my new book More Words Written Down taken from blog posts since the prior two books.


More Words Written Down is a follow-up effort to the compilation book projects Words Written Down and 111 Books Reviewed with all three coming out of this blog and each an appreciation of words put down on a page in a meaningful order.

The blog itself was begun 5 ½ years ago and my approach to it has been to read things of interest and then attempt to describe those pieces well and make connections between them.

The result of this is hopefully both a repository of great writing and body of work with my thoughts on the pieces. As part of this body of work idea, the blog and book compilations out of it are also intended to serve as a tangible record for my two boys of what things I found interesting or important early in their lives.

Links noted throughout the print version of the book can be found at the referenced blog post and have as their criterion for inclusion the concept of Interesting. If writing was deemed interesting, it’s noted along with my ruminations on the topic and view of what makes that particular set of words grouped together into a book or story so good that they acquire permanence.

The goal of Words Written Down is to highlight and pay homage to this permanence of words. Everybody's gotta have a thing, and for me, one of my big things is words. Here's to hoping that as my boys get older they find the things that have importance for them and get to spend their time pursuing and working on those.


More Words Written Down (like my prior two books) is a cleaned up compilation of blog posts I've done, with those posts separated into the below categories:

Book Reviews
My Writing About My Writing
Outdoor Adventure
Family / Parenting
Everything Else

The idea behind putting it into a book (or three books) relates to both the aforementioned permanence of words idea and I've found interesting the process of editing the posts into book form, both a print version and Kindle book that has embedded links to the stories I wrote about.

Assembling the book

The creation of the print version of the book was done via CreateSpace by Amazon and the eBook version via Kindle Direct Publishing by Amazon.

From a process perspective, I first copied over posts from my blog into a Word document and then cleaned each with taking out any html formatting and organizing into the categories above. From that point, the work was around formatting with getting the post spacing and usage of bold consistent as well margins correct for a CreateSpace book (involving left and right as well as book gutter margins). Additionally, headers were inserted, with it seeming to take an excessive amount of time to create in Word new headers for each of the post category sections.

The steps of then uploading a .pdf file on CreateSpace were easy, but then reviewing the submitted file resulted in my time after time having to go back to the Word document to correct something. In many cases these corrections were to line spacing that worked fine in just a Word document, but had to be changed for the purpose of a book so that I wouldn't have for instance the first line of a new post on one book page and then everything else on the next page. The cover creation via CreateSpace was also a fairly simple process, the only thing I really had to figure out was how to create my "Beckam Callum Book Company" publisher logo via first Word and then the Snipping Tool and saving it as a .jpg file.

The creation of the eBook version via Kindle Direct Publishing was fairly easy in comparison, especially since most of the time I spent editing the print version was around headers and new page line spacing, neither of which exists in eBooks. The only real step required was to create an eBook table of contents and that was a simple process to do on the Word document I then uploaded to Kindle Direct Publishing.

Having the book(s) completed

I'm not going to make any broad declarative statements about this absolutely being my last blog post book compilation lest I change my mind, but this third one likely was it as while I still expect to continue reading a lot and keeping track of great writing I've come across, I'd like to find new ways to spend my writing time and energies than simply writing about excellent work from others.

That said, the time spent on the blog (and books resulting from the blog) has been enjoyable and resulted in tangible outputs that I think have permanence to them (there's permanence word again) and I'm happy with that.