Tag Archives: book update

Steve’s Books 8/11/2020

I write a lot and have quite a few books.  So now and then I’m going to post a roundup of them for interested parties!

My sites:

Fiction

I’ve been returning to fiction with a techno-fantasy setting of several planets orbiting a star called Avenoth.  Take a typical fantasy world of magic and gods, and let it evolve into the space age and internet age . . .

  • A Bridge To The Quiet Planet – Two future teachers of Techno-Magical safety find trying to earn their credentials hunting odd artifacts backfires when you’re hired to put some back . . . on a planet where gods go to die!

The Way With Worlds Series

This is what I do a lot of – writing on worldbuilding!.  You can find all of my books at www.WayWithWorlds.com

The core books of the series will help you get going:

  • Way With Worlds Book 1 – Discusses my philosophy of worldbuilding and world creation essentials.
  • Way With Worlds Book 2 – Looks at common subjects of worldbuilding like conflicts in your setting, skills for being a good worldbuilder, and more!

When you need to focus on specifics of worldbuilding, I have an ever-growing series of deep dive minibooks.  Each provides fifty questions with additional exercises and ideas to help you focus on one subject important to you!

The current subjects are:

Creativity

I’m the kind of person that studies how creativity works, and I’ve distilled my findings and advice into some helpful books!

  • The Power Of Creative Paths – Explores my theories of the Five Types of Creativity, how you can find yours, and how to expand your creative skills to use more Types of Creativity.
  • Agile Creativity – I take the Agile Manifesto, a guide to adaptable project development, and show how it can help creatives improve their work – and stay organized without being overwhelmed.
  • The Art of The Brainstorm Book – A quick guide to using a simple notebook to improve brainstorming, reduce the stress around having new ideas, and prioritize your latest inspirations.
  • Chance’s Muse – I take everything I learned at Seventh Sanctum and my love of random tables and charts and detail how randomness can produce inspiration!

Careers

Being a “Professional Geek” is what I do – I turned my interests into a career and have been doing my best to turn that into advice.  The following books are my ways of helping out!

  • Fan To Pro – My “flagship” book on using hobbies and interests in your career – and not always in ways you’d think!
  • Skill Portability – A quick guide to how to move skills from one job to another, or even from hobbies into your job.  Try out my “DARE” system and asses your abilities!
  • Resume Plus – A guide to jazzing up a resume, sometimes to extreme measures.
  • Epic Resume Go! – Make a resume a creative act so it’s both better and more enjoyable to make!
  • Quest For Employment – Where I distill down my job search experiences and ways to take the search further.
  • Cosplay, Costuming, and Careers – An interview-driven book about ways to leverage cosplay interests to help your career!
  • Fanart, Fanartists, and Careers – My second interview-driven book about ways to leverage fanart to help your career!
  • Convention Career Connection – A system for coming up with good career panels for conventions!

Culture

  • Her Eternal Moonlight – My co-author Bonnie and I analyze the impact Sailor Moon had on women’s lives when it first came to North America.  Based on a series of interviews, there’s a lot to analyze here, and surprisingly consistent themes . . .

Book Update 3/15/2010

And now the latest update on the Fan To Pro Book:

  • It's done and available at lulu.com.
  • It'll be available internationally through other stores in about 5-7 weeks.

 . . . and that's about it.  I'll be bringing copies to Chibi-Con for sale if anyone wants to buy an autographed copy.

Now what did I learn?

  • There really is a point to stop editing.  There are five errors I found in the latest copy of the book, one an arguable use of plurals, another an appendix subheading sizing, and three where I violated some of my preferred header punctuation rules.  I looked at this, realized that I'll be editing this thing forever, and just pushed the button to publish it.
  • In editing for style, I recommend going in "sweeps" – pick a style issue and spend time troubleshooting it throughout the book.  If it's headers sizes or formatting questions, etc. pick a subject and if possible do it in one go.  It's easier to focus on one thing.
  • In formatting and setting up a book know your word processor and take advantage of every time saving tool especially styles (for the non-word processing, styles lets you assign a style to parts of a book then with one go change that style and thus alter every part of the document using that style).  By using styles in Microsoft Word I was able to do all sorts of experiments with formatting fast.
  • Always assume a second edition – I did.  I even have a to-edit version ready to go and will probably do a second edition early 2011 to correct any errors and add any new information.
  • Lulu.com is overall easy to use – it reminds me of LinkedIn.com with some seriously impressive formatting and publishing tools.  It's practical, actually simple in many cases, and is focused on doing whats important over flash in most cases.  In a few cases some of the workflow seemed clunky and the design philosophies didn't seem consistent, but that's a minor argument – the company, to put it simply, built an entire web-based publishing system, and when you see it work, it's impressive.
  • Covers are still a pain.
  • Again as I harp on the fear that self-publishing will produce a wave of lousy stuff (well more lousy than some of the stuff out there) is an illusion.  It takes a lot of effort and commitment and knowledge to get a book out there.  That's a filter for both quality AND dedication right there.
  • I need to start buying more small press books.  There's all sorts of neat stuff out there.

So there you go.  Now will I continue this update series?  Probably intermittently, ramping it up for the next books.

Books?  You got it.  Stay tuned . . .

– Steven Savage

Book Update 2/8/2010

And now an update on the Fan To Pro book.  I spent a lot of the weekend working on it, so here's the latest:

Status:

  • The book is actually formatted and uploaded at Lulu.com.  This actually took awhile due to PDF conversion issues.
  • I am now working on the cover, which seems to work well as a simple cover for now – though people are still dropping ideas on me left and right.  I think next time I may "fansource" cover design more and hands-off it.
  • I hope to get the cover finished in a week or so and approve the final version in March.
  • Release to Lulu will be earlier than release to Amazon and other stores as it takes a few weeks for a new book to go through the system.  I'm still aiming for March.

What I learned:

  • Typesetting and laying out a book is a very unappreciated skill that you will NOT appreciate until you actually do it knowing a book you set up will be available to the public.
  • PDF conversion is also a massive crapshoot.  Lulu.com's PDF conversion beat the one I had on my Mac Word.  I ended up using Mac Word to get my book PDF, but had to cope with some annoying margin issues.
  • The first time you do set up a book for publishing, take a whole day to do it.  Trust me on this.
  • Examine other books to get ideas for layouts, numbering, and more.  That helped a lot.
  • Don't forget title, copyright, dedication, and other pages.

So the book is all but ready to go.  It needs a cover, a print check, and some tweaking.  But late March is looking awfully good . . .

 . . . and yes when it's done I'll write up my experience with Lulu.com!

– Steven Savage