It’s four months since I signed the Styling You book deal with Hachette Australia.
Can’t quite believe it really as so much has been jammed into that four months.
I’ve been reflecting on that a bit this week and thought I’d share with you here what’s been involved to date and where I’m at in the publishing process.
My printed out and edited manuscript arrived on Monday morning.
This kind of freaked me out seeing all those pages there as I knew I’d written more than I’ve ever written before on one project but I hadn’t actually printed it out (on account of being in possession of a $100 inkjet printer, the main job of which is to print out invoices and client briefs).
I’m about to get stuck into reviewing the edit and have about two weeks to complete that. My copy editor Elizabeth has marked all the queries and proposed changes and it’s my job to work through them and either agree (after all she knows books – I don’t), clarify or re-jig text.
Note to self: must not drink wine while going through VERY IMPORTANT edit.
A few weeks after signing the book contract, I started writing the words.
Lots of them.
My publisher and commissioning editor, the fabulously dapper Robert Watkins, set me fortnightly deadlines for delivering the words. And then I set myself an even tighter deadline to have the words finished before my girls’ week in Bali.
I’m a deadline girl from way back and this worked really well for me – even if meeting the deadline was sometimes down to the wire.
I found using online task manager Asana a great way to break down the project into chunks and keep on task for those chunks. Now, I’m using Asana for all aspects of my business. I can’t recommend it highly enough if, like me, you like a bit of electronic organisation in your life.
This organisation and time management was really important to me because I wanted to keep my blog running at the same time as I was writing the book. I aimed each week to do my blog writing Monday-Wednesday, leaving Thursday and Friday for the book.
I say “aimed” as life and procrasti-baking (when you adopt baking as your procrastination habit) often got in the way. On those weeks, I’d steal some weekend time for the book.
I’m also incredibly thankful for my small group of freelancers, who I commissioned to post on Styling You to help further ease the load in the super busy times.
Knowing that this workload and a busy family life (looking for a new home in Brisbane and daughter finishing exams and graduating from Y12) could potentially impact on my already dodgy immune system, I also made a pact with myself to keep on track with a mostly healthy lifestyle.
I’ll write a separate post on what I’ve done over the past five months in that department but, in a nutshell, I made my health a priority through some simple changes and new habits.
It paid off – getting me through to this point in one piece.
My book – Unlock Your Style – will be a bigger and better version than my original e-book version.
It will carry the same title but you will find even more tips, tricks and advice to develop and honour your style – no matter at which stage of life you are.
If you did buy Unlock Your Style in its e-book form, then thank-YOU. It’s now officially a limited edition as it’s no longer for sale.
The new Unlock Your Style will be a full-colour, 176-page book. You’ll be able to buy it in its physical form as well as electronically via iBooks or Amazon.
All that colour got put to good use during the recent photo shoot in Sydney.
I think I’m still recovering from that week – it honestly took more out of me than the writing.
The organisational side of my brain was worked to the max – sourcing and calling in fashion pieces and beauty product to match my already-written words – plus sourcing clothes for my “models” (Norlin, Dee and Jo) and I to wear.
If you play along on Instagram you would have caught some of the action … if not, here are a few photos from the shoot.
Now if only makeup artist Gina Guirguis and Schwarzkopf’s Theresa could arrive every morning and work their magic!
Schwarzkopf products used to style my hair
Photographer Steve Brown making me look book-tastic
Four “models” sized 8-16 feature will feature in Unlock Your Style the book – here we’re all wearing the Sacha Drake Catelyn dress – a dress that can be worn a tonne of different ways
I’m so grateful to my girlfriend Natalie at Zambezee Boutique for loaning me most of the clothes that will feature in my publicity and author photos next year.
Photographer Steve Brown was a dream to work with – and we did make him work – 570 photos over three days – as well as a behind-the-scenes video.
I couldn’t have completed it all without the help of the girls at my agency (they happily stockpiled all the requested product that I organised from my Queensland base to be in Sydney in time for the shoot), my publisher Robert and my girlfriend Simone, a former model and model agency owner, who flew down to help all things flow smoothly behind and in front of the camera (and importantly be there for a celebratory champagne at the end).
The graphic designer is currently working on the cover and inside design. I’ve seen some early ideas and just love them.
My edited text and the photos from the shoot will be typset into this design and I’ll next see my words looking fabulous in a print-out of the book for any final – minor – changes before it goes to print.
This will all happen in the New Year … 2014 is going to be a big one. I just know it.
If you have any questions for me about the book process, fire away in the comments below.
PS. If you’d like to be the first in the know when pre-orders become available and when and where I’ll be launching the book, sign up here.