Burning Issues

If you’ve toured the virtual publishing headquarters of Writers Glen Publications, WG Tower, you may be interested in what can be automated and how.

We have two burning issues:

  • Data management
  • Evaluation and deployment of best-of-breed open source tools

Let’s take from the top floor down:

## Executive Suite

Data management is the job-one requirement here:

  • Calendar
  • Contacts
  • Correspondence
  • Budgets
  • Timelines
  • Proposals
  • Business and project plans
  • Project reports
  • Sensitive data such as passwords

We could go for any one of several outstanding free and open source database programs. But that may be overkill. Our data records are simple, the volume of records minimal, and we have little to no need for fancy data analysis. Nor are transactions an issue since the publisher, though sporting many hats, is an army of one.

Indeed, simple comma-delimited records stored in files should suffice nicely.

An efficient text editor is mandatory. Spreadsheet software? Check.

Our motto: Keep it simple.

Punch the down button for operations.

## Operations

More data flowing in and out of this floor:

  • Budgets
  • Invoices
  • Purchase orders
  • Contracts
  • Digital assets

Ah, a simple accounting or bookkeeping application is top-of-the-list here.

Let’s drop down to the IT department.

## IT

More data management. But, ah, we see the need for an a text editor and any number of network management and web development tools.

The good news: Free and open source offerings have us covered.

  • Hardware Inventory
  • Network Management
  • Script Development
  • Web Development

Shall we proceed down to the library?

## Library

Data, data, and more data.

  • Project archives
  • Deployed shell scripts
  • How-to tutorials
  • Notes
  • Resource links

## Editorial

Here we compose, edit, revise, and typeset text. We crop and scale images, create tables, graphs, and diagrams. We design books, typeset manuscripts, and

We need an efficient text editor, world-class image editing, diagramming, and typesetting tools. Mustn’t forget file conversion.

## Marketing

Here we develop marketing strategies, compile lists, develop marketing collateral, plan and execute marketing campaigns. We share software tool requirements with every other floor from editorial to executive suite.

So there we have it. The burning issue? We need:

  • Efficient management and storage of data files
  • World class software tools
  • Simple shell scripts to automate all that can save time, money, and non-creative effort.

Note that we have little choice but to tangle with tech— same-ol’-same-ol’ for many self-publishers.

It’s unavoidable.

But if you’re among the many self-publishers who could care less about what happens between fingers tapping on keys and exquisite words popping up on your monitor, keep an open mind. We’ll take it slow and easy.

Strive to relive your child-like passion for exploration and discovery. There are wonders to behold. Opportunities to seize. New horizons beyond limit.