Q&A: Advice for prospective textbook authors

TextbooksQ: I have an idea for a textbook and I hope to put a proposal together soon and start looking for a publisher. Can you share any advice as I begin this process?

Mike Kennamer, TAA Vice President: “My suggestion for starting to look for a publisher is to first look at companies who publish in your field. I’d recommend that you review their websites and determine which one (or two) seem to be the best fit for your title. Many publishers provide information for prospective authors online, including what they look for in the proposal. Generally, they will want to see two chapters, a detailed table of contents, list of features, and information about who will use the book, the size of the market, and competing titles. If you are unable to find author information online you might consider contacting a sales rep and ask them to put you in touch with someone who does acquisitions for the company. Becoming a textbook reviewer is also a good way to form a relationship with a publisher. [Read More…]

How to get your boss’s support for your dissertation

writingIt’s not easy working full-time and writing a dissertation. A few fortunate doctoral students can quit work and devote themselves completely to the dissertation. But if you cannot quit, you can still make time for it—by meeting with your employer or supervisor.

Employers often encourage higher degrees, and some pay for them in whole or part. Your boss may be supportive of your academic pursuit and willing to give you released time and preferential schedules to meet the demands of graduate work. To gain what you need, you need a plan and rehearsal for the talk. [Read More…]

To Do: Register for TAA’s June Conference

It’s time to make your travel reservations and check your conference planning off your To Do list! Register today for TAA’s 30th Annual Textbook & Academic Authoring Conference.

TAA’s Conference will be held on June 9-10, 2017 at the beautiful Renaissance Providence Downtown Hotel, a 4-Star luxury hotel located in the heart of Providence, Rhode Island. The recently renovated boutique hotel is housed in a historic 1920’s era building, providing a one-of-a-kind backdrop for a memorable conference and visit! TAA’s discounted room block fills up fast; make your reservations soon to guarantee the group room rate.

New spring 2017 TAA webinars – Improve your skills

Whether you are interested in learning how to use social media to promote your writing, enhancing your approach to visuals, creating instructional media on a budget, writing and developing a college textbook, or creating ancillary materials and companion websites, TAA’s spring webinar series for textbook and academic authors has you covered. Join us as various industry experts share their expertise on academic and textbook writing topics. Sign-up early to reserve your spot! Not a TAA member? Learn more about member benefits and join today.

10 Disaster control guidelines for your textbook schedule

Drafting and production schedules are more important than one may think in the world textbook publishing. At the same time, deadlines can be burdensome for authors. Missing them is a principal cause of marketplace failure. An untimely textbook, finding no uncommitted customers by the time it reaches them, is doomed. Furthermore, postponement—pushing back a product another whole adoption cycle—is usually not a good option.

The best way to deal with schedules is to master them at the very beginning through realistic planning, starting with a drafting calendar.

Nominate yourself or a colleague for a TAA Award

The TAA Council announces a call for nominations for two TAA Awards: The Council of Fellows and The Ron Pynn Award. Any TAA member may nominate him or herself or another TAA member for these awards. The deadline for nominations is February 27, 2017.

Call for nominations to the TAA Council

The TAA Governance Committee announces a call for nominations for Vice-President/President-Elect, Treasurer, Secretary, and two Council positions. All nominations must be received by March 1, 2017.

How reporting royalty income affects taxes for authors

It is well established that an author who is engaged in the business of writing for income should report royalty income on Schedule C, not Schedule E. But what about a retired author who no longer is writing but still receives royalties from previous work? Should retired authors report royalty income on Schedule C or E?

TAA member and veteran textbook author Phil Tate conducted extensive research to answer these questions and has compiled that research into a document entitled, “How Reporting Royalty Income Affects Taxes,” which he is sharing with TAA members. Click here to login and view. In this document, Tate shares his non-expert, non-legal opinion to help you decide which schedule to use when reporting royalty income on your taxes.

6 Techniques to jumpstart writing efficiency and productivity

In our writing projects—dissertation, article, book, presentation—after the first brilliant idea or paragraphs of exhilarated creation, our enthusiasm may turn to mud. From my own experiences with tortured writing and those of my academic coaching and editing clients, I recommend the following six techniques, with credible rationales, to help you work more efficiently and write more productively.

[Featured Members] Finding, chasing, and becoming rabbits: Learning from others on the road to the professoriate

TAA’s featured member profiles generally feature veteran textbook and academic authors and industry experts. In this issue we are delighted to feature two recent doctoral-recipients-turned-assistant-professors: Tracey S. Hodges and Katherine L. Wright. Here Tracey and Katherine share insights on their writing practices, lessons learned, and their experiences chasing rabbits and becoming the rabbit to be chased.