Linda Zajac: Four Unofficial Guides to Minecraft

Creative Mode

THE UNOFFICIAL GUIDE TO MINECRAFT CREATIVE MODE
THE UNOFFICIAL GUIDE TO MINECRAFT ENCHANTMENTS
THE UNOFFICIAL GUIDE TO MINECRAFT MAPS
THE UNOFFICIAL GUIDE TO MINECRAFT REDSTONE
Series: My Minecraft Alternator Books (Grade Level: 3–6)
Linda Zajac
Lerner; August 1, 2020; $9.99 (paperback), $21.99 (library binding)
Creative Mode: ISBN-10: 1728414563; ISBN-13: 978-1728414560
Enchantments: ISBN-10: 172841458X; ISBN-13: 978-1728414584
Maps: ISBN-10: 1728414555; ISBN-13: 978-1728414553
Redstone: ISBN-10: 1728414571: ISBN-13: 978-1728414577
eBooks also available

Zajac reports:

I was asked to write this four-book series, which covers various aspects of Minecraft game play. I had worked with this publisher before on two other Minecraft books for kids https://www.nasw.org/member_article/linda-zajac-unofficial-guides-minecraft-survival-minecraft-mods.

The time frame was exceptionally tight. The publisher wanted four books with glossaries and STEM/coding sidebars in less than three months. During that time there were two major holidays and I had a five-day vacation booked. Although it seemed like an impossible task, I took the job because I didn’t have any commitments at the time and I like a challenge.

Linda Zajac

Enchantments

To get a visual sense of my outline and text due dates, I wrote the eight deadlines in my planner. Then I raided the library and checked out every young adult and adult Minecraft book that was on the shelf. Systematically, I scanned through each source, making a list of the pages that pertained to my topics. This way, I knew which books I needed for each of my subjects. Although some outlines weren’t due until December, I finished all of them in a week. Psychologically, checking off half my deadlines was a huge stress reliever.

I tackled the books in the order they were due. Whenever I was at a loss for words, I’d switch to the next book and work on that one for a while. During this flurry of writing, I also received additional unrelated work, so, I ended up taking work with me on vacation. I met all my deadlines, but it was close. I turned in the final book on the day it was due.

Shortly after the books were done, I received a screenshot wishlist for each book. The screenshots were fun, but they took time. I devised redstone contraptions, built the Mark Twain House, and designed a working rollercoaster. You can see the rollercoaster and other redstone contraptions in these videos: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL6G4ISUdMeIehw-hl6lG3mhnz0PSu3zE0

I wish I had known that the screenshots the publisher asked for early on would end up on the actual covers. I didn’t squander time, though, so I wouldn’t have done anything differently.

Contact info: -


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Advance Copy

The path from idea to book may take myriad routes. The Advance Copy column, started in 2000 by NASW volunteer book editor Lynne Lamberg, features NASW authors telling the stories behind their books. Authors are asked to report how they got their idea, honed it into a proposal, found an agent and a publisher, funded and conducted their research, and organized their writing process. They also are asked to share what they wish they’d known when they started or would do differently next time, and what advice they can offer aspiring authors. Lamberg edits the authors’ answers to produce the Advance Copy reports.

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