After a positive initial assessment from a professional in the publishing field, I had recruited an old acquaintance – who was a talented typesetter and book designer – to help turn this dream into a reality. However, because there was almost no budget at that point, she was taking it on as a favour – which inevitably meant the project was low on her list of priorities. I thought I was fine with that…and initially, I was.
Going nowhere slowly
Over time, I came to see that being bottom of someone’s priority list means you can’t expect much back. You’re effectively a charity case. But not quite – because real charity benefits the poor and needy – so people are more inclined to put great effort into it. In this case, my work was merely a personal project that I needed help with – so it didn’t mean much to anyone other than myself.
Of course, my typesetter was a really good person, and I don’t think she was intentionally delaying my project. She just had other work at the time. Work that actually paid towards her living expenses. Plus, she also had other significant personal circumstances in the mix, so I understood that I had no right to expect timeous responses or major results.
To be fair, she was professional about the whole thing – getting back to me periodically – but there seemed to be no material progress in getting a layout and design done.
At the time, I was still working through my own process of finalising content and rewriting where needed. By then, the project had evolved into a more trimmed-down publication that wouldn’t include as much photography. And, because all signs indicated that colour printing was going to be very expensive, I resigned myself to the fact that this would be an e-book only – even though I also wanted it in print (as I’m sure most writers prefer).
So, the ideas were more solid, but the typesetter’s lack of progress – along with my own personal challenges – combined to a point where I lost motivation. And because this was effectively an after-hours project, I couldn’t really dedicate huge chunks of time to revitalise my passion in it.
So, the project was still there – in the background – but I just didn’t feel like pushing anymore. My initial grand plan – to have this amazing, elegant book showcasing my personal creativity – fell to pieces.
And so it sat relatively dormant for close to a year.
The dream wasn’t quite over, though. It was just resting, as you’ll find out in the next edition…
Other parts in this series: