Writing books (was Re: Want to learn Python)

Aahz aahz at pythoncraft.com
Sun Jun 17 01:48:21 CEST 2007

In article <1182011078.358795.151590 at c77g2000hse.googlegroups.com>,
7stud  <bbxx789_05ss at yahoo.com> wrote:
>It's nice to hear about an author who cares enough about the end
>product that bears their name to insist on quality.  I'm so tired of
>hearing authors whine that the publisher screwed up the book.

In all fairness, my co-author and primary partner (Stef Maruch) is a
technical writer and editor as a profession, and she used to work at
Yale Press.  So we had more expertise on hand for knowing how to deal
with publishers.  Like law and sausages, the publishing industry does
not bear close examination, and yes, if an author does not know what to
expect, it's easy to get a book screwed up.

For that matter, even when you *do* know what to expect, books still get
screwed up, though that happens more in fiction publishing (go look in
rec.arts.sf.composition for some horror stories written by experienced
multi-book authors).

On the gripping hand, I've tech edited three or four other Python books,
and several of them were clearly written by people who didn't know Python
and didn't want to learn enough to write a book about it.  And they
ignored my edits.  (This seems like another opportunity to thank our tech
editor, David Goodger.)  So your larger point about careless authors is
essentially correct.
Aahz (aahz at pythoncraft.com)           <*>         http://www.pythoncraft.com/

"as long as we like the same operating system, things are cool." --piranha

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