It’s a wrap. The Grade 6 Vocab Fun project is complete. I sent the last revisions in this week.
I might feel a twinge of sadness–it is the end of something fun and challenging, after all–except as of today, I’m doing the Grade 5 puzzles along with the Grade 1 puzzles, so there’s more fun to come.
Want to know one of the best parts of the project? The editors. The job’s over, so this isn’t sucking up. It’s true. As you know, this was something new for me: I’ve never worked for the education market, and I don’t have an education background. What do I know from a sixth grader?!
Hmm…let’s see…sixth grade. That would be Mr. Jacobs in the “relocatables”–i.e., permanent temporary buildings. He’d hold misbehaving boys upside down by their ankles. I memorized The Walrus and the Carpenter. Sometimes, on Fridays, he would say, “Take your spelling test,” and we were expected to write our ten or so spelling words from memory, spelled correctly, of course. His reasoning was that if we had studied them, we’d know them. Every Friday, I memorized our spelling words at lunch. We had assigned boy-girl-boy lunch seats and the boys I sat with hated me because I never failed to memorize the words in twenty minutes or less and always aced those tests. That’s what I know from a sixth grader.
It was a huge relief to discover the editors were smart, competent, knowledgeable, and fun. Knowing they were going over everything eliminated all pressure and stress and allowed me to be creative and have fun. When I missed my mark, they returned the arrow and told me to take another shot. It was teamwork at its best.
Of course, this doesn’t take into account the designers who I’m afraid are going to hate me since I really didn’t use the templates they’d prepared, and when I did, I mucked them up pretty good. I think I pushed every margin out to make more room.
Ah, but here they come again: the editors swoop down and head off the designers armed with pitchforks and Wanted posters with my face on them. They smooth it all over, don’t ask me how.
Oh, and the pace of the work was downright leisurely. The whole book was mapped out with ample time to complete each section. Compare that to: “We need these two books in four weeks.”
Vocab Fun is not destined to be a New York Times bestseller–there will be no book tour, no author signings, no glamour–but dang it was fun.
Categories: Children's writing