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.