Documenting the Tiny Tales Project

I just finished the Tiny Tales from India book yesterday, and since that went really smoothly, as did Tiny Tales of Nasruddin, I am ready to put my faith in the PROCESS here. Creating a book can be so full of weird worries and doubts and insecurities, but just like with writing itself, I need to learn to put my faith in the process... and I am really happy with the process I have been following, so I want to document what I'm doing in case that might be useful for others.

I recently finished a big series of posts about the blog/network approach I use in my classes (blog/network posts here if anyone is curious), and the way I did that was to plan out the posts, publish the titles, and then add in the links as I completed each post, while adjusting the topics/titles as the whole thing took shape. So, that's the same approach I will use here, and please let me know if there is some particular aspect of the production process you are curious about, and I will try to write that sooner rather than later. You can find me at Twitter (@OnlineCrsLady or @OnlineMythIndia, which is my class Twitter), and feel free to contact me by email also:

So, here's the list of topics I think it could be useful to document, and I've put in bold and added a blurb to the topics I've already written about here at the blog, highlighting in yellow to make them easy to see:

Blog Post Agenda

OER inspiration. I'd like to write a post about how I decided (in April 2019) to fully shift my efforts to OER creation, and also some shout-outs to the amazing OER and OA projects that inspire me.

Story inspiration. I need to write a post about the Freebookapalooza and all the amazing public domain resources for storytelling traditions, plus a shout-out to ABE Books and all the used booksellers out there.

100-word stories. This will be an ongoing series of posts since one of my goals is to create a kind of "recipe book" for 100-word-stories for teachers who might want to use these materials in their classrooms, teaching students both how to write their own microfiction and also how to re-write the tiny tales in new ways (all my Tiny Tales books are CC-licensed for reuse like that).

Creative Commons. That means I should also write a post about the CC license I am using and why I chose that license. I'm still torn about the non-commercial clause, and part of me is thinking I should just put the stories into the public domain with a CC0 license, so this post will be a good chance for me to just think about that some more.

Using Diigo for project management. Diigo is a great tool for project management in general, and it's perfect for these 100-word stories. I need to write a post about how I use Diigo to generate the first draft of the actual book.

In praise of plain-text. I'd like to write up a post about the value of using a plain-text file. It's not always possible, but it sure is handy to be able to have the control version be in plain-text which I then adapt for other purposes. I write in Google Docs, but I do so knowing that I am going to copy-and-paste the final version into a plain-text document (which is how I then generate the Pressbooks text).

link to Making the Audiobook. This post describes how I hijacked my proofreading process to make an audiobook. Now I actually AM EXCITED about proofreading. So, if you hate proofreading (I seriously hate proofreading), maybe you can try this same trick also. It's not the best audiobook... but the real value is actually making me want to proofread!

link to "Tiny Tales" series at Pressbooks. These are my notes about making the Pressbook for each book. I took notes when I did the Nasruddin book, then I referred to the notes again when I made the India book, and I ended up following the same procedure. The only difference was that I chose a different theme for the India book, and I'm just going to keep playing with the themes to see which looks best in print (I'm not really that interested in print distribution, but if I do enough books, I'll get to eventually try all the themes and pick one!).

link to Print Books and Pressbooks. This post explains why I'm opting for Amazon to create and distribute paperback versions of the books for people who want/need a printed copy, but I gave Lulu a try and it also worked great. Deciding factor: free shipping from Amazon.

Reclaim Hosting and digital distribution. My domain is with Reclaim Hosting, about whom I cannot say enough good things: educational web hosting especially for educators. I will write a post explaining how I am using my Reclaim domain space to support this project.

Randomizing widgets. I am creating randomizing widgets for each book, and I'll document the spreadsheet-based approach I am using to do that. It's working really well for both books so far and I'm exciting about bringing more random content to my website.

Class project. This is something new, but I'm hoping to use some Google Forms and a Google Doc to help the students in my three classes in Fall create a microfiction anthology that we can publish as a Pressbook. I'm really excited about this experiment-to-come!

Writer cat loves to write.
(made with cheezburger)

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