“A book can be inspired by nearly anything,” writes Naomi Huffman in How To Make A Book, “...a seemingly stray thought you can’t shake, a lyric, an overheard conversation, another book. Whatever it is, turn it over again and again and again in your mind. Watch it. Listen to it. Be skeptical of it. Let it bother you. Most importantly, take notes.”
In that post, Naomi gathers a few prolific writers to ask them what the secret is to writing a book—and a lot of the advice is great! But one thing I’ve always felt that’s missing in all this advice about books and publishing is what not to do: where are the fuck ups along the way? What chapters did they cut out altogether? Where are the arguments with the book designer, the anxiety around release dates and online marketing and the book tour?
In short: where’s the drama?
That’s what this newsletter is for. I’m going to write a book and along the way you’ll see everything: the first draft, the sketches and diagrams, the bad prototypes. And because I’m not a book designer by trade then this newsletter is where I’ll learn an awful lot about books and make an awful lot of mistakes. At any time you can hit reply and give me feedback, advice, thoughts, kind words of encouragement, or a brutal, devastating critique if I so happen to choose the wrong paper stock. But please be kind.