Finally, after a long work and writer’s delay, we continue our interview with Steven Savage! He is the lead writer at the blog Fan To Pro, Consultant, Writer and overall Professional Geek. This time, we’re talking about his current and upcoming writing projects.
So you, have two books-Fan to Pro and The Best of Fan To Pro. Those who have read your works, know your main themes, but for those who haven’t, what’s your main mission when you are writing your books?
I make tools for people’s lives and careers. What I do is create useful analysis, speculation, or exercises and advice that people can apply to their careers.
How long does it take for you to complete an initial draft of a written project?
The best-of-books are made over time.
The other books are a bit odd. My first “non-best-of” book actually took a good 9 months – that was Fan To Pro, which was rewritten twice. My current book, “Convention Career Connection” took some 10 months, but I was interrupted for about 4-5 months during that.
I’ve got it down to the point where I can write a book about every six months. The formatting and editing actually is the worst part, so I’m starting to outsource that. I’m also moving to dictation software. So get ready to see things come faster . . .
With the struggle of “Paper” bookstores and routes such as Borders, do you worry that publishers and writers are going to lose their ability to reach the masses who have not yet or may not ever make the transition to E-books and E-publishing?
It’s sort of six of one, half-dozen of the other. The e-publishing movement means you can reach more people who are part of a smaller population that is very book-oriented. So really in a way you can reach more people, but you’re reaching a subpopulation. It’s very strange, and for some authors it works, for some it doesn’t.
As you also do E-publishing, what is the hardest part of the entire process of converting from print to E-formats?
Bullet points. I kid you not, those never convert right.
The problem is there are 3 formats – PDF, ePub, and Kindle. PDF is easy, but you often want to remove breaks and padding pages for PDFs. ePub isn’t too bad with the right tools as it’s really a web page. Kindle is challenging because some elements don’t quite translate right unless you’re careful with them.
I think conversion is, straight up, one of the big barriers to eBooks being used by even more small publishers.
We have heard through certain sources, that you use dictation software to aid in your writing process. Do you feel it would help writers who don’t feel like typing, and would you recommend it to someone in that same predicament?
Certain sources? My blog? Of course!
It’s actually a mixed bag. It’s NOT for everyone or for every writing style. I don’t use it all the time.
It works for me because A) I often speak like I write, B) I can carry outlines in my heads and thus “read off of them”, C) Some of my writing is braindumps that are just edited. If you don’t work in any of these ways it may not be for you.
If it is? It’s great. I write 25% faster when using the software.
We have also heard of a new project that is in final production.. Can you tell us anything about it? We also like pictures too. :)
That’s Convention Career Connection. It’s a guide to creating career events for cons, and it has a simple 5-part system to help you make events – paired with a huge list of ways to carry out those parts! The idea is that there are five things that make a good career event, and if you can fulfill them all, your event will be a success. So I walk people through their options.
Want to see more? Go to http://www.conventioncareerconnection.com/
If there is one thing you would like anyone who reads any of your works, walks away with, what would that be?
The confidence that they can turn their geekery into a career.
Any final advice to those who wish to join the writer’s movement?
I like calling it a movement – because it can be! Write. Go and do it. You can get your words out. If you’re good, you’re good. If you’re bad, you can improve. But go communicate!