A few people have left us comments asking about the writing process for our forthcoming book, Day By Day: Refining Writing Workshop Through 180 Days of Reflective Practice, since we announced that we were writing one last summer. These folks have queried us about everything from how we went about writing the proposal for our book to what the writing process was like. I e-mailed people back with answers to their questions, but since I’ve started to receive some e-mails about the process again, I figured I’d blog a bit about the writing process. On Tuesday afternoon I mailed back my reviews, on the copy edited manuscript, to our publisher. Therefore, I now have the time to sit back and reflect about where we’ve come to get to this point and where we’re going from here.
In the Spring of 2009, our proposal to write a book about enhancing the teaching of writing workshop through reflective practice was accepted by Stenhouse. In June 2009, Ruth and I got together for a few days and began planning out the first chapters of the book. We began writing in late July since we both needed to finish the school year and wanted to spend a little quality time with our families. We paced ourselves throughout the school year, finishing each chapter about every month. By mid-March, we finished our first draft of the book. We spent the next month revising. In addition, we also spent late March and most of April working on the introduction, the closing thoughts, the acknowledgments, and the book’s appendix. On April 19th, 2010, we sent our manuscript into our incredible editor. The team at Stenhouse spent some time reviewing the manuscript before sending it off to be copy edited. In late May/early June, we went back and forth with the production manager in an effort to finalize a cover. We also worked with someone from marketing on the back cover text. In late June we received the manuscript back from Stenhouse. Each of us was expected to review it to review the corrections, respond to queries, and make additional changes. While I chose to review the manuscript the old-fashioned way, Ruth chose to review the manuscript electronically. There were times when I second-guessed my decision to review a hard copy of the manuscript since it weighed eight pounds. However, now that I’ve read through it, I’m glad I reviewed the manuscript on paper since I think I would’ve gotten a headache reading that much text on a computer.
Next, the notations Ruth and I made will be combined. Then, the manuscript will be sent to a typesetter, which is someone who applies the interior design for the book, which we just received and loved last week, in a page layout program. In late August we’ll receive printouts of the page proofs to review. While this is happening, a proofreader will review the copy edited manuscript. And I believe (at the same time), the book also gets indexed. Once all of these things are approved, the book gets finalized and is sent to the printer. As of right now our book, Day by Day: Refining Writing Workshop Through 180 Days of Reflective Practice, should be published in mid- to late-October 2010.
If you have any other questions about the book writing process, which we’re still learning about ourselves, don’t hesitate to leave a comment or shoot us an e-mail.
I am a literacy consultant who has spent over a decade working with teachers to improve the teaching of writing in their classrooms. While I work with teachers and students in grade K-6, I'm a former fourth and fifth-grade teacher so I have a passion for working with upper elementary students.
I'm the author of Craft Moves (Stenhouse Publishers, 2016) and the co-author of Jump Into Writing (Zaner-Bloser, 2021), Welcome to Writing Workshop (Stenhouse Publishers, 2019), and Day By Day (Stenhouse, 2010).