THE OLD WOMAN AND THE BOOK
Just suppose that you are techno–old woman. The term old here is used to indicate the level of technical knowledge not the number of wrinkles.
As schoolgirl just after computers were introduced to the English curriculum, you could wield a nifty biro and use a (non-scientific calculator) but techno-wizard you are not. Pre-book is the term for this era. Your terminology would have been old (“inter-web, photo-thingy”) and so on.
Your phone was an ancient and your preconceptions even older.
Old means treasuring the comforting soft pages with their odor and texture. They don’t reprimand you or condescend if you misunderstand (and if they do you reciprocate and swiftly turn the page).
Old also mean that you are stubborn. Stubborn
When the heavens open and your exquisite grandchild blesses your life with his birth: you tell your family that you are going to write a book, they smirk and chuckle. Much merriment is to be had. But you are old and stubborn so you decide not only to publish but to self-publish.
You haven’t completely lost control of all your faculties however, so you go online you sign up for a course that promises you will have your own book to treasure and stroke on completion.
A nice lady guides you through the process with patience and encouragement. She teases out your hidden talents and tells you quietly that you can.
Old means that you type the text with two fingers and teach yourself Word, Excel, PowerPoint and how to use the internet. You balk at illustrating yourself so a nice boy offers to help.
The little twit disappears without doing anything, braces and all. He also takes your disk-on key thingy. So you work on instinct; you draw, sketch and paint, learn illustrator, graphics and Paint.
Stubborn is what stubborn does.
The world needs to know that it has become spectacular, it has been carrying on as usual.
Old is cussing at the computer screen and then apologizing profusely when your interior launcher won’t launch the interior and you realize you should have used Explorer instead of Chrome.
Old is crying like a baby when you see your book onscreen and the pages turn by themselves. Your little miracle has been immortalized.
Old means you sigh thinking that your job was done.
Then the portals of hell swung open.
Your generation likes to stick it to the man but apparently Amazon is the man. The gigantic very far away man. You cannot confront him directly but need to go through a very nice boy in India who politely tells you that as a Create Space author you cannot advertise or even ask people to review your book. You have to market it yourself (you call it do their job for them) but
they bind your hands and feet. Your friend’s reviews are denied but the big companies’ published books are immediately put on the front page.
No one can see your book and you have to sell it on social-media. You start a pen pal relationship with Deepak but life is too short.
You start a pen pal saga with the polite boys but you realize that you are very small and old and they are not.
You learn about Goodreads and make a little progress.
Old means being stubborn but not being stupid. You shall stick it to the man. You turn the book into a workbook and an inter-active toddler experience with quizzes tee-shirts.
You translate it into two languages and turn the whole thing into a concept for early-learning, teaching toddlers the way they learn-interactively and vocally.
And you shall make sure that your Spectacular Boy rules the world but won’t turn into the man.