Posted by on Jan 25, 2018 in The Shakedown Cruise | 6 comments

Before I was The Indy Author™, I spent over two decades as a project manager. I have my Project Management Professional certification from the Project Management Institute, and I believe that there is no problem that an Excel spreadsheet can’t solve.

I wrote and published my first four novels—The Sense of Death, The Sense of Reckoning, Rock Paper Scissors, and Snakes and Ladders—while working as a project manager supporting the supply chain arm of a large international retailer. I would joke about my Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde life—super organized (not to say obsessive compulsive) project manager by day, creative novelist by night—but the roles were not as different as they may have appeared on the surface. I had to bring innovation and creativity to my day job to get the work done in my corporate life, and I had to bring organizational skills to bear to get the work done in my creative life.

I’m still working as a project manager, and so I need to fit my writing and indy publishing activities around a nine-to-five, Monday-through-Friday commitment, which always has to take first priority (since, as of this writing, it is still what’s paying the bills).

As I became more committed to independent publishing, and to helping others discover and benefit from the indy option, I started thinking about what support I could provide, and I realized that sharing tips for better organization was a lesson I could share. But Project Manager Lessons for The Indy Author sounded so dry—I needed a more engaging way to convey my left-brain advice for achieving right-brain success.

While pondering this dilemma, I participated in a writers group meeting that was attended mainly by traditionally published authors. One attendee mentioned that she had asked a self-published writer how she knew when a book was ready without the input of a publisher. The response the self-published writer gave was that she published when she felt she was sixty percent “done.”

Sixty percent? That was horrifying, but I couldn’t come up with a good way to express why. Then I attended a charity event in Maine where one of the items being auctioned was a beautiful hand-built dory. And I found the metaphor that expressed why sixty percent was unacceptable, and that encapsulated my own approach to writing: writing is a craft in both senses of the word, and the author owes it to the readers to send them off on their journey in a well-built, seaworthy vessel.

This book will help you achieve that goal.