The next three weekends were productive ones. Chapters 4, 5, and 6 were churned out in rapid succession. By the end of the Thanksgiving holiday, I had finished the last two chapters. That didn’t mean the book was done—far from it—but it was a major milestone, and only two weeks late of the contractual deadline. I get the feeling that the publisher was used to writers delivering late. Every time I gave my editor a status update, she thanked me for trying so hard to stick to the schedule.
So, what was left to do? Well, a lot of the figures I included with my writing were placeholders. I wanted to create graphs that Tufte would approve of, and I wanted all of the screenshots to be sized appropriately. There was a diagram that I had only sketched out. Then there was the dedication and acknowledgements, the conclusion, a references section, a glossary, and the book cover. I was also required to provide abstracts and keywords for each of the chapters. And, of course, there were the reviews. I already had comments back on chapters 1-3 and 4 was being reviewed.
Now, one of the exercises uses the Amazon homepage as an example, so the book includes screenshots. These were the only figures that there was some question as to whether or not permission was needed. I was asked to contact Amazon about them. I contacted their customer service and was directed to send a draft to an Amazon Permissions email address. I did that and never received a response. Eventually, my editor told me that we could use them, but they would all have to include the web browser. I had cropped them all down to only show the content, so I was going to have to redo all of them from scratch.
Another exercise, which I pulled straight from my workshop, involves a layout for an address book, including contacts’ photos. For fun, I had used the fighter pilots from Star Wars: Biggs Darklighter, Jek Porkins, Dak Ralter, John “Dutch” Vander, Tiree, etc. I couldn’t have those copyrighted images in the book, of course, so I decided to acknowledge my coworkers—the developers and designers that have helped me to reach the point in my career at which I could write the book. I invited them to provide photos for my mock address book, which you’ll be able to work with in chapter 8. Those people are:
- Rob Veltre
- Jeff Christensen
- Doug Fellner
- Will Ross
- Steven Schwab
- Kelly Dolan
- Joe D’Alessandro
- Henry Burke
They’ve all been outstanding collaborators from whom I’ve learned much. Including them in the book is the least I can do to thank them for their contributions to it.
To be continued…
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