So, Time for … the DISH


All right, you all think you want to know what the SSRLP was, do you? Fine, I’ll dish. Right here, right now.

I’m sorry I’ve been offline so long. It’s been tough to get on and when I do I have other things I have to do even if I don’t feel like it. But last time I did get online, some of you stated you wanted to know about the SSRLP. I figure there’s no harm in telling you now. I hope.

Some of you emailed and asked it involved a novel. No, it doesn’t. It does involve writing, though.

So, my buddy JES heard me moaning and groaning about my job sitch back in October. He contacted me and said something to the effect of, “Hey, I can connect you with these guys I know who do writing projects, some of ‘em technical writing. Want me to introduce you?” To which I eagerly replied, “Why, yes … yes I do. Thank you!” And so he did, being a man of his word and honorable.

The person he introduced me to ended up contacting me by email and asked me to set up a time to talk on the phone. I did. He missed the appointment. I thought, Not good. He set up another appointment, and this time he kept it. He spoke with me for about fifteen minutes and basically left me with a “Don’t call us, we’ll call you” sort of departure. I figured what the heck … it was worth a shot, right? I went about my life.

About three weeks later, guess who calls? That’s right, the contact. He gets in touch with me while I’m walking through Wally World. He asks if I have a few minutes to discuss a project he thinks I’d be a great fit for. I said “Sure!” – after I got up from the floor. (No, I didn’t expect to hear from him again.)

He tells me he wants me to write a book. A technical book. About PowerPoint. Specifically, he wants me to write a book about PowerPoint 2010. The company puts out a series of books overseas, similar to our For Dummies books, and they want authors to walk readers through using hardware or software in baby steps with simple wording and a few page elements which enhance the task-oriented information.

I almost had a heart attack. I told him I’d let him know. My beloved wife stood beside me grinning like a Cheshire cat. “You’re going to do it,” she said. “I don’t think so; it’s not something I can do, I don’t think.” The guy on the phone says “Why not? You can do it. Tell you what, send me a sample table of contents and I’ll present it. If they don’t like it, they’ll pick someone else.” “Oh,” I says, “uh … okay. Sure. I’ll try to get that to you as soon as I have a chance.” I hang up. My wife continues with the Cheshire grin. I explain she should wipe the smirk off her face because I have to compete for the project and since I’ve never, in my entire 13 year (at the time) career, used PowerPoint (never mind the 2010 version, which isn’t even out yet!), I’d have little or no chance at it.

I was wrong. Long, LOOOONG story short, I got the project. Over the next – what? five? six? – weeks, I wrote that book. I had a lot of help from my precious LOML and from the experienced author the agent put me in touch with to guide me through the process for this book. The company is very stern and inflexible about the format and the requirements; no problem. It made the book easier to write, once I got the hang of it. And it was a paying gig. Not a ton of money, but something.

So, I haven’t seen the money yet, and I will be a published author. I don’t know when yet. And it won’t be under my pen name, which I reserve only for fiction writing. But it’s something and I enjoyed doing it, even though it was tough at times and I barely (!) made the deadline.

I’m waiting to hear back on revisions and corrections and for the money to arrive. And that’s the long and short of the SSRLP.

Feel better now that you know? I didn’t think so. 😉

-JDT-

All original content © 2009 DarcKnyt
ALL rights reserved.

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13 thoughts on “So, Time for … the DISH

  1. That is awesome! Good for JES (who is extra awesome) and good for you. Special kudos in your beloved for living up to the title and knowing you could do it. All around great. I hope this leads to other things.

    Yeah, JES is made of awesome and I’m grateful. 🙂

  2. The benefit of this above money, IMO, is what Marta said: it could lead to other things. It also showed you that you can do these things, and you might be less nervous accepting the next offer. Proud of you, buddy. You’re awesome.

    Thanks. At this point I do not expect to work further with this publisher, but maybe with this agent. We’ll see. 🙂

  3. Has the contact talked about any other future books they might want you to write?

    No they sure haven’t Bob. I don’t expect them to offer me anything further, however.

  4. Great job on pushing your boundaries. I’m sure you wouldn’t want to write only technical manuals the rest of your life, but a job’s a job. I hope it leads to more.

    Thanks, Linda. To be honest, it didn’t push my boundaries (except time), which is why I was so concerned about it. 🙂

  5. What they all said about the project. You know I’m hugely ambivalent about tech writing. But who can argue with writing for money?!? 🙂 And I hope at the very least it gave you good things to look forward to waking up to, eh?

    A job’s a job, no doubt. This one didn’t pay as well as it might, but I don’t argue with dollars. 🙂

    SO happy this has worked out for you. May it lead to even better things!

    Thank you for your part in all of this, JES. Couldn’t have done it without you — literally. 🙂

  6. Oh my gosh that is FABULOUS!!!!!!! I am so excited for you! I have been dying to know about SSRLP–you actually got me to take a break from work to see what this is all about. So super psyched!!! Congratulations!
    *high five*
    *fist thump*
    ***huge GRIN***

    Thanks, D! Not as big a deal as it sounds, to be sure, but I appreciate the support and enthusiasm. 🙂

  7. That is so cool! As I said before, maybe the SSRLP is a job…maybe more of this stuff will come your way. I knew a couple who bought their house by indexing books. Granted, they had real jobs and indexing books may not be the most exciting way to earn a living, but there are worse things.

    Well, I’m not confident more will come, but that’s fine. This was helpful when it rolled around. 🙂 Thanks for the encouragement.

  8. That’s pretty cool. Congrats on the project.

    Thanks, Bryce. Today’s post should clear up any delusions of how awesome it is, though. 😉

  9. Sounds cool. At least you got to write something and it will be published. Sounds like I winner to me!

    Oh, don’t know if it’s a winner or not, Delaney, but a job’s a job, right? Even if it’s short term as all get-out.

    Glad to see you back, I’ve missed you.

    I miss you all too, but I can’t say I’m “back” — not all the way — yet.

  10. VERY Cool! A paid writing gig is a good writing gig. 🙂

    Oh, I don’t know. See my last post for more about how that worked out. It’s not all it’s cracked up to be.

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