Quick Question


question-markI’ll throw this out for all of you to give me your opinion.

My AWESOME agent got in touch with me a couple days ago and asked if I would be interested in doing another book. I told him I’d think about it, because I’ve done two books on this HTML5/CSS3 stuff. This book is more about web design; I’m not really familiar with modern (or even archaic) web design at all. But it’s a refresh of a book written in 2009, and I’m torn on whether to take it or not.

If I take it, it has the upside of being a paid gig. It could also put me back on the publisher’s radar screen for more work next year. On the downside, I really don’t have a lot of spare time as it is, especially weeknights, and trying to write a book’s not that simple. Plus, there’s the unreasonable deadline and the fact that they pay sllllloooooooowwww.

What do you all think? Should I take it and give up on my WIP? Should I pass on it and ask for other chances next year? I really have no idea what to do. And my wife is pretty ambivalent about it.

Sound off as soon as you can, y’all.

-JDT-

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8 thoughts on “Quick Question

  1. Can you change the subject of the book to something more interesting to you? Especially if you can point to the previous books and say, “Look, there’s already info out there on X, but Y is an an open field. If you let me push the book toward Y, we won’t be competing with ourselves and I’ll be able to write a better book, since it will be more interesting to me.”

    Well, that’s a pretty good idea, Tony. I’d have to know what the book is like completely. In general, though, the publisher dictates almost all the terms. They tell the authors what they want and what they’ll accept. They don’t look over our shoulder while we write, but they want a refresh of this one, not a completely new topic. So, meh. Good idea and thought for future, open projects, though.

    That would keep the interest level higher, keep you on the radar screen for your agent & publishers, and provide more income to support the WIP when you come back to it.

    IF I ever get back to it. 😦

    Just my take on it.

    A very good one, too. Thanks for stopping by and sounding off!

  2. Agree, work that pays is good. Though… it would be a real shame to give up on your WIP. Especially when you seem to have built up some momentum with it.

    It’s been tough to keep that momentum going for some reason. I guess the problem is, I’d have accepted this in a heartbeat last month, or in September (late October was a disaster for me at work). But now, I just want to enjoy the holidays and relax. And I can’t spit these out as quick as I used to when I had no full-time job and lived on society’s taxes. So it would be a LOT of work during my upcoming holiday time off to get a good start on it. Another factor I didn’t mention in the post is, I don’t have a copy of that book to work from so I know where to go with it.

  3. Do you need the money? If not, maybe you should pass. You can think of it as paying the potential money toward relaxation and a book you really want to write.

    You know, that’s a good point. I don’t need the money. My job covers all our expenses and leaves us fun money after all. It’s just nice to have it and I like staying on the pay-track, available and attractive to those who DO cough up the dough. But, I really want to do this fiction-writing thing. It’s what I WANT to do. So, there’s that. Thanks, Sher.

  4. My first instinct was that you should take it but then I thought about how you already feel like you don’t have enough time, no need to start the new year with extra stress.

    Great point, Bob. Thanks! I’m really grateful for the input.

  5. As you know, I’m real familiar with the ambivalence. 🙂 But ultimately, I always vote for sanity. That you’ve got a good day job now decides it, I think. So I’d say to respond to the agent that it was a really difficult choice, but you just can’t do it NOW. That doesn’t shut the door completely against future work.

    Brilliant, JES! Brilliant! Well stated. I think I’ll do just that.

    And y’know, it’s cool that they thought of you.

    Yes, it is, which is why this is so hard. Thank you for taking the time — and considerable effort, if I understand correctly! — to provide that insight.

  6. My vote is with all of the above. Give yourself a break. You work hard enough already!

    Thanks, Spark! I did, in fact, turn it down this time. I hope it’s not a mistake, but I just want to enjoy my holidays. 🙂

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