The years 1982 to 1984 marked a critical shift in the computer book trade. The markets for these titles were accelerating, and so were the challenges!
Previously I had placed each of my books with Howard W. Sams, then a small press based in Indianapolis, Indiana. Sams was directed by people I would characterize as ‘short-sleeve farmer’ Hoosiers. These fine down-to-earth people had souls whose motivations were fused with the corn stalks that rose from soil to sky just beyond their office windows. Over time, they evolved as parent figures to me.
There was just one problem!
I now was ready to author more book projects than Sams was positioned to produce. It was time to beat my wings with greater force and speed. A new path before me, I began to test the larger technical book publishing firms. Joining forces with the mighty McGraw-Hill in New York, I created 4 titles for their Byte Books division.
- Word Processing Primer
- Computer Animation Primer
- Apple Backpack
- 8086/8088 Microprocessor Primer
New York City intoxicated me, I felt like I had reached the peak of my career. Lovely women editors worked me over till I was willing to sign anything. Still these books sold well, and opened me to a whole new kind of publishing, allowed me to work with professors and professional writers, but I will not soon forget the ‘back story’ that I lived during these times: unproven authors, over optimistic delivery dates–all conspiring to make these books significantly more work than first imagined.
David Fox’s Computer Animation Primer became a cult classic, and today its pages have been immortalized at http://www.atariarchives.org/cap. David completed this title in 1982, but the publisher did not get it on the market until 1984! As you can see, I had to grow another beard.