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Thread: News on my CP Book

  1. #1

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    Hey Folks,

    So, I thought I've give you some updates on what's going on with my book. I'm not doing this as a plug, rather I think that few of us have had the opportunity to write a book on CP, so I thought I'd tell you what the experience has been like.

    Here is the current status. The book is INDEED going to be published. About 10 days ago I was shipped the first draft of the completed layout for the book in two massive chunks. The kind folks at the publishing house asked me to return to them the entire set of revisions in about 5 days. Eeesh! After months of sitting around waiting, I had to jump into hyperdrive. This is what the publication process has been like: classic "hurry and wait, hurry and wait."

    Well, I looked over the first version and saw they had done a fabulous job with the layout. They did not have any problem with a couple of things I was concerned about, i.e.

    1)The use of Latin names.
    2)The clear acceptance of evolution in the text (crazy this is even an issue)
    3)The acceptance of the occasional sly joke

    Interestingly, they removed all citations within the text. This means that not only scientific references, such as (Clarke, 2003) would get killed, but if I said something like, "Coco peat is unreliable, as D'Amato points out in his book", they'd change it to "Coco peat is unreliable."

    This isn't too toxic, as I'll just create a detailed citation guide and put this up on my web site to aid the reader.

    Meanwhile, my wife Beth is quite happy with it, and points out that they didn't dumb down my occasionally complicated sentence structure.

    Anyway, they asked for my corrections, so I sat down and started writing corrections. When I was finished, a couple of days later, I had written a document FORTY-TWO pages long!!!Yikes!!!

    That's not to say that the draft they did was bad. It's just that publishing a book is a complicated procedure!

    One thing I regret about the book is that, I suppose in accordance with modern aesthetics in publication layout, they put a reasonably large amount of "white space" in the book to make it easier to read. My taste would be to fill such white space with figures or text, but it's all about making the book prettier.

    They've done a great job with the images, too. Nearly all the images are mine. However, I've had a couple of line drawing made to illustrate some hard things. Also, I've gotten some really cool images by some of our intrepid CP explorers to round out genera I haven't had field experience with. So the book looks nice.

    I'll post more here as things unfold, ok? It's a pretty cool process, involving boredom, excitement, laughs, and tears!

    Barry
    Carnivorous Plant Newsletter
    Co-editor

  2. #2
    Let's positive thinking! seedjar's Avatar
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    Yay Barry! Good to hear things are coming along. It's strange that they cut your citations - I guess the publisher isn't looking to pitch this book at the technical crowd. Keep us updated.
    ~Joe
    o//~ Livin' like a bug ain't easy / My old clothes don't seem to fit me /
    I got little tiny bug feet / I don't really know what bugs eat /
    Don't want no one steppin' on me / Now I'm sympathizin' with fleas /
    Livin' like a bug ain't easy / Livin' like a bug ain't easy... o//~

  3. #3
    nepenthes_ak's Avatar
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    sounds like youre definetaly expeireinceing publishing a book!

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] (seedjar @ June 12 2006,12:58)]Yay Barry! Good to hear things are coming along. It's strange that they cut your citations - I guess the publisher isn't looking to pitch this book at the technical crowd. Keep us updated.
    ~Joe
    Hey Joe,

    Yeah, they wanted to make sure the book doesn't come across as too technical and tedious. But cutting these was a big source in corrections on my part. For example, consider the change in tone of the following sentence:

    The horticulturist named Joe (aka Seedjar) is sometimes a real dork who can't even dress himself (Ozzy 2004; Bugweed 2006).

    vs.

    The horticulturist named Joe (aka Seedjar) is sometimes a real dork who can't even dress himself.

    Without the citations, it makes it look like I'm coming up with the comments about your dressing style. A BIG change in the tone!

    The only thing I regret is that I feel this book is built heavily upon the contributions of many other people, so its a pity they won't be acknowledged the way that I'd like. But I managed to get in my thanks whenever possible. You'll see how when the book is published!
    Carnivorous Plant Newsletter
    Co-editor

  5. #5
    Always a newbie glider14's Avatar
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    wow! im deffinatly getting a copy as soon as it comes out!
    Congradulations Barry!
    alex
    Everything is explainable. The seemingly unexplainable is but a result of our insufficient knowledge.- Hans Brewer

  6. #6
    Moderator Schmoderator Fluorescent fluorite, England PlantAKiss's Avatar
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    That's funny...I almost went to Amazon and ordered my copy today before reading your post. Then I decided I'd better wait til my next pay day.

    Congratulations! Really looking forward to it!
    "Fox terriers are born with about four times as much original sin in them as other dogs." - Jerome K. Jerome

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    endparenthesis's Avatar
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    Who's doing the cover? Does the publisher decide?

  8. #8

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    Funny you ask about the cover. Up until recently, Amazon.com has been using a dummy cover they rigged up, using someone else's VFT photo. They've been telling me that this photo will not be on the front cover, and I've been waiting for news of a new cover. I've given them several suggestions, based on my favorite images. I'm waiting to see what their art department decides.

    Now, just moments ago, I see they've replaced the VFT version with a new version, this time with a Cephalotus photo that *is* mine. So that's quite a relief. We'll see what happens next.

    I've just sent them a note asking if they can change my name on the front cover from "Dr. Barry A. Rice" to just "Barry A. Rice," the former seeming a bit pretentious to me!

    I'm not entirely certain the same cover will be used by all the publishing houses. So the US/UK version may look a little different from the Australian one, or the South African one.



    Barry
    Carnivorous Plant Newsletter
    Co-editor

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