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My Big Book News

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Writing a book, as you may know, requires multiple skills. At the conceptual level, whether it’s nonfiction or fiction, you must have the core ideas and the ability to articulate the content. You have to make it interesting, coherent, and allow the reader to connect the dots. It’s all too easy to lose track or become overwhelmed with so many things in motion.

Sort of like having your first baby, it’s can be charming in concept and utterly different in practice.

I’m having a baby. Fortunately it’s not my first. I have some idea of what I have gotten myself into, although books can be as different from one another as each of our kids can be.

It’s a book about what we have to understand to craft After 50 lives in a world of increasingly short term planning – a world without fixed pathways, reliable signposts, stable rules, or fallback guaranties. I’ve just signed a publishing contract with AMACOM, the publishing division of the American Management Association. The book proposal, outline, introduction, and several completed chapters came first. Many of the interviews were completed early with a small number remaining to be done.  I didn’t, of course, do this alone. I had the support of my virtual team of editor, subject matter interviewees, social media professionals, and trusted colleagues. Their jobs were to 1. Read the manuscript and give me those blinding glimpses of the obvious that elude writers from time to time and 2. Make sure I am not hanging my current OKness on this book or forgetting all of my biography that preceded it.

Now the fully completed manuscript is due in mid-December for an anticipated July 1 publication date. I think of this as upping my game and expanding my sphere of possibilities. It’s very exciting.

Several of my friends are choosing to shrink their worlds overall. Several others are expanding their possibilities. Yet others are downsizing their possessions, and growing both their spheres of interest and their professional/volunteer engagement simultaneously. There are also some with zero awareness of even the questions surrounding these decisions and actions.

All of these approaches are highly personal and not subject to second guessing by me.   That said, my own experience of the new book contract leads me to wonder about the choices my blog readers are making.

What kind of life planning are you doing?

How far out can you reasonably plan?

When can you know you are on track or off?

Please let me know and thanks.

4 responses to “My Big Book News”

  1. Sue Seiter says:

    George,

    Congratulations on the new book contract – simply wonderful!

    In figuring out my new life as a widow, I have decided to leave myself open to all possibilities — well, almost all! So, when someone says, “Do you want to go to the concert at the Opera House or kayaking or to St. Petersburg, Russia?” I have said “Yes and yes and yes.” I recently had my first date in 50 years — scary but fun.

    I generally only plan for the next 3-6 months – life is too uncertain, and often too disappointing, if you plan further out. I am trying hard to live in the moment with gratitude for what I have and hope for good health and more adventures in the future. Can’t wait to read your book!!

    • George Schofield says:

      Hi Sue

      All this and a date, too. You are an inspiration.

      Having been with you and Bob as he took a long time, graceful time to exit from h is body, Linda and I take great pleasure in being among your many supporters as your unfolding and new possibilities pop up out of nowhere or come nocking on your door.

      A quote misattributed to the Victorian Novelist George Elliott (Mary Ann Evans):

      It’s Never Too Late To Be What You Might Have Been

      There is reportedly no evidence that she ever said or wrote it ,but it’s still a darned good quote and thought, isn’t it?

      George

  2. Marge Warner says:

    George, Having been a widow once and being on the path to that again,I take every day as it comes as if I plan to far ahead it will always change. I have also told all my children to quit buying us stuff. As I know that some day they will have to go through it all,and they will say where did Mom get all of this stuff. Look in the mirror dear ones. Congrats on the book I know its been in process for a long time. I remember the launching of the first one.

    • George Schofield says:

      Hi Marge

      Look in the mirror, indeed. I remember when you were considering getting married again and you did it.

      Shorter term, incremental planning now makes so much more sense doesn’t it? Not just because we’re older but because in so many cases our needs are exquisitely simpler than they used to be.

      After all the years we’ve been friends and colleagues you can still stun me and make me laugh with your capacity to go straight to the heart of the matter. My thanks agin for that.

      George

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