Today I did a mind-map for my idea and organised all my thoughts into categories that could be chapters.
Just Introducing myself.
I have a crazy idea for tech writing that I just can’t get out of my head since I submitted it as an idea to a tech conference. It’s a book/presentaton/blog series about solving FizzBuzz. Yes, the very same FizzBuzz problem that Jeff Atwood helped make famous. And it needs to be examined from every angle. Good solutions. Bad solutions. Solutions that should be bad but aren’t. Solutions enabled by different language features. Solutions that are abuses of various language features.
I’ve written 3 chapters of a rough draft of essays tangentially relating to FizzBuzz solutions that I will release on Kindle as soon as I get my Fire. I’m not sure how that will go over but I had to get it out of my mind. But for some of the solutions a dryly clinical and technical approach is needed: some of the solutions are beautiful like a flower, and others are beautiful like a car crash… you can’t not look.
This was all done before I learned of PragProWriMo. And the format for me seems like a perfect fit. 500 words per day, one day per solution. Worst case I have a 3 month backlog for a twice a week special topic blog post series.
I look forward to seeing what others write this year!
Okay, last year I participated in NaNoWriMo, and didn’t quite make the word limit on a sci-fi novel.
This year, I’m going to see if I can use PragProgWriMo to kick me in the butt to write a tech book I’ve had in mind for a while.
The working title is “What Smalltalk Taught Me About Ruby and Vice-Versa”. I’ve noticed more interest among Rubyists of late (and particularly among Ruby on Rails folks) in using Ruby in a more object-oriented manner, particularly the ideas about OO which come from Smalltalk, which was obviously a major inspiration for Matz.
I think I’m qualified to do this. I was one of the main characters behind IBM Smalltalk in the 1980s-90s, and was secretary of the Smalltalk ANSI standards committee. I was attracted to Ruby after ‘retiring’ from IBM because of the similarities to Smalltalk as well as some of the differences. http://talklikeaduck.denhaven2.com/2008/05/21/what-would-you-miss-if-you-had-to-stop-using-ruby-and-go-back-to-smalltalk
I’ve already written quite a bit http://talklikeaduck.denhaven2.com/category/smalltalk about Smalltalk in connection with Ruby. The question is if I can manage to organize some of what I’ve already written and new material into some kind of a coherent book.
I’ve got a contract to hammer out a “Unit Testing in ActionScript” title. I’ve got a good mind-map, but need to flesh out my outline so that I can get started on the actual words.
The topic of my book is audio programming in iOS. This is an area I’ve been interested in for a while, but have had no experience with. Why not pick up a new skill during PragProWriMo?
I see a risk that what I write might not be the most valuable information, as it’s not coming from an industry pro. However, I think it will be interesting to someone just like me who is an experienced programmer who wants to get started with audio.
- downloaded a new text editor (TextWrangler) so I could, “Use a Single Editor Well.”
- wrote 561 words for an introduction and 111 words for an overview chapter
- created a public github repository (https://github.com/gmcerveny/PragProWriMo2011) so I could, “Always Use Source Code Control.”
Working title: Pragmatic Guide to DNS
Day 1, 841 words.
If I spend more time on this today I’ll probably work on a mind map.
All kinds of intriguing ideas here! And looks like you’re all off to a good start. Nice to see some returning PragProWriMo and NaNoWriMo folks too - welcome back!
I’m looking forward to giving this a shot. I’ve been batting an idea around for awhile called IT Sucks and There’s Nothing You Can Do to Change It (Or is there?). It was scattershot but I began the work of turning it into a narrative today. I got started on an outline and think I have a structure. I also wrote around 850 words.
A long way to go, but this should be fun!
I kinda want to read that. :) Best of luck!
I’m using this month to work on a rewrite of someone else’s book, a particular take on computer history. Today, to get myself focused, I wrote a new elevator pitch for the book without looking at what had been written before. Just 250 words, but it got me excited. I want to read this book!
Day one done! I wrote about 1,250 words of my first chapter. My idea for this book is more linear than my last one, so I’m actually starting at the beginning, rather than somewhere in the middle. What an odd experience.
Posting my day 1 update late, but I got in 3 more pages and a good solid example.