I’ve heard only other authors know what’s involved in writing a book, but there is another tribe who know the precise weight of that burden — those with the misfortune of being in a relationship with a writer. I wrote this in a space of time painstakingly carved from the dense rock of life for me by my wife Megan. Washing dishes and giving the kids baths may not be “writing”, but without her doing those, this book wouldn’t be here.
I started this project while a programmer at Electronic Arts. I don’t think the company knew quite what to make of it, and I’m grateful to Michael Malone, Olivier Nallet, and Richard Wifall for supporting it and providing detailed, insightful feedback on the first few chapters.
About halfway through writing, I decided to forgo a traditional publisher. I knew that meant losing the guidance an editor brings, but I had email from dozens of readers telling me where they wanted the book to go. I’d lose proofreaders, but I had over 250 bug reports to help improve the prose. I’d give up the incentive of a writing schedule, but with readers patting my back when I finished each chapter, I had more than enough motivation.
They call this “self publishing”, but “crowd publishing” is closer to the mark. Writing can be lonely work, but I was never alone. Even when I put the book on a shelf for two years, the encouragement continued. Without the dozens of people who didn’t let me forget that they were waiting for more chapters, I never would have picked it back up and finished.
To everyone who emailed or commented, upvoted or favorited, tweeted or retweeted, anyone who reached out to me, or told a friend about the book, or sent me a bug report: my heart is filled with gratitude for you. Completing this book was one of my biggest goals in life, and you made it happen.