Prof. Matthew G. Kirschenbaum on writing a book

In Treasures on August 15, 2012 at 8:21 pm

A while ago, I preached in the benefits of bibus and electronic citation archiving. Here now is the much more elaborate version from a professional. I enjoy his blog very much. So if you are not subscribing to this one (which I could understand) at least subscribe to his.

Matthew G. Kirschenbaum

Nobody teaches you how to write a book. Yes, in graduate school, you may get “feedback” on your dissertation to a greater or lesser extent from mentors and peers. But that typically has very little do with the process of executing on a marketable book project (and even scholarly monographs have to be marketable, all the more so in the current publishing climate). So writing—making—a book is something most of us figure out on our own, as an assistant professor, on the tenure clock. In my case my first book, Mechanisms, had relatively little in common with my dissertation—really only a single chapter (some of the work on Afternoon if you’re wondering). But even though I had an advance contract for it, I didn’t really know what I was doing. It was very much a process of feeling my way, stepping along from one passage, paragraph…

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