Writing a Technical Book – What I learned.

1. Make sure your technical reviewers are knowledgeable about your subject. Most often there are multiple reviewers to give different insights into the subject matter.

2. Writing will take twice as long as you think. The words will flow easier the longer you write. Don’t give up.

3. Some parts of the book will be harder than others. I particularly had problems with the preface and the outside book cover.

4. Expect the book to change as you write. My first book started out as a novice guide but the reviewers let me know that the material was much more advanced. 

5. Meet the publishing deadlines you agreed to. It is ok to let a few slide but those deadlines are there for a reason, to keep your project moving forward.

6. Make sure you are using the template and image styles correctly. I personally had to reproduce a lot of images for a book since all output was supposed to be a screenshot. Newbie mistake!

7. Look over the comments in the first drafts to keep from wasting a lot of time. I made the mistake of not carefully reading through these, made some of the same mistakes throughout the entire book.

8. Keep both views of the book in mind at all times…the overall vision and direction plus all of the small details. That is hard to do.

9. Don’t expect to get rich off a book, technical books become obsolete quickly and often are targeting a very narrow audience. This means the subject matter needs to appeal to the largest audience possible.

10. There will be mistakes that happen in the final finished product, we are human!

11. It seems in the technical circles I am a part of, you are now in a different class after publishing a technical book. A definite ego trip but you have to keep churning out books to keep the ride going or they soon forget about you.

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