Setting deadlines, whether you meet them or not, is important. If you have no target how would you know if you hit, missed or came close? I find that I have to establish a plan and then strive towards it otherwise I meander and make little progress. I was pretty sure I had this eBook all figured out and it would be published by Memorial Day.
Stuff happened; additional responsibilities and side entertainments encroached on my time, sometimes with my complete complicity. One interviewee for the Bruce book was discussing the different friends that he knew who approximated his enthusiasm level. I said it would be great to interview them but the book might never get out. One interview pointed to another and another, and then I’d be issuing this book at Chirstmas. He stopped me dead in my tracks and asked, "What’s the rush?" My reason at the time was that I loved writing this but I had other projects I wanted to get to and I wanted to finish one completely.
That’s still true to an extent. I like the way the book is finishing. I am starting to believe that non-fiction books might have an aspect to them that there will always be something more you can add and the trick is drawing a finish line. One more interview, one more photo. Yes I want to get this out and, yes, I’m trying to be careful and make this the best book it can be, the best writing I am capable of, but I also understand I want a certain amount of closure.
Except for the last few interviews, the book is finished. There is still some more editing and I know I’ll add another photo or two but, basically, it’s done. The problem right now is that I still have three interviews left to do. Two are in Baltimore so I have to clear my schedule, sync it with the people I am interviewing, get down there and then get back and write it up. The last interviewee is hard to catch, [my fault, not his] so I’ll give myself until mid-July to catch up and then after that throw convenience to the wind. I could do this hard-to-catch guy over the phone but it would never be as good as face-to-face.
There is one other short [but important] interview but I can write that up after I make a few e-mails, place a 5-minute phone call and wrap it up.
There are several other good reasons to finish this. One is that I’m pretty excited to share this whole story and like a little kid on Christmas I can’t wait to publish this. Other people who have read excerpts enjoyed them and they are waiting, patiently, I hope. I’d had some wildly excited, dedicated Bruce fans, chopping at the bit and I don’t want to get them all worked up and then disappear on them. “Say, what happened to that guy who said he was writing a book about the Boss?”
Last week I received this great response from a Springsteen website offering to review the book. Turns out one reason they are excited is that they have done several Bruce book reviews but this is their first e-book review. I replied that, in addition, this might be the first inter-active Bruce e-book. If you’re going to do something new-ish then you might as well make it ground-breaking. I like the ring of it: “The first inter-active Bruce e-book. Cool!” I might add that to my provisional tag lines for the book – “the one Bruce book you cannot live without” and “everybody has a hungry heart −and a Bruce story.”
Mine will be out before Labor Day. I promise.