Since we announced the publication of our book, Little ideas for living life well, we’ve been asked how we’ve gone about writing it. A book produced by three people, living in different cities on two continents is a bit out of the ordinary!

How to write a book at long-distance

The answer, as to many challenges over the last year and a half, is thanks in large part to Zoom. As we’ve written our blog together since 2017 from our homes in Wales and the U.S. we’re veterans of the video call. We’ve always had a regular schedule of meetings so we can plan our content and made sure to have an agenda so that we don’t spend the whole session chatting. A definite temptation when you’ve been friends for over 30 years! When we decided to embark on writing the book, that structure lent itself perfectly to the project and so we made a plan to speak twice a month, with a task to complete or a section of text for each of us to write every time. In between, we shared drafts by email and edited each other’s copy until we had a version we were happy with.

Although we both enjoy writing, as the book progressed, we realised that we needed someone with a flair for design to help us transform the text into something someone would want to read. So, we approached our friend Cristina, who brought her talent for photography, design know-how and great eye and turned our typescript into a full-colour book, transformed by her original pictures and sketches. Each time we met, we’d share the screen on our Zoom call to discuss different pages, tweaking photos, colours, fonts and placement until we were all happy. We checked and double-checked the text for mistakes, spotting something new each time, of course!

One of Cristina’s photographs from the book

When we felt we had the final version ready, we chose the publising company Ingram Spark to produce and distribute the book. Cristina used the design software they recommend and uploaded the finished proof, ready for printing.

Seeing the book for the first time is special

All ready for readers

All in all, it’s taken about a year and a half to reach the stage where Little ideas for living life well is out in the world. It’s been the best of projects for the pandemic, giving us something to focus on and a reason to connect. We hope it will be an equally enjoyable read.

If you would like to buy a copy, our book is available online internationally and can also be ordered by your local bookshop. All the details are here.

See you next time, do stay safe and well,

Claire and Sam


2 thoughts on “Writing and designing our book

Leave a Reply