In 1998 I started writing nonfiction, and discovered that I really liked it. My first foray into the territory was a factual article for Analog Science Fiction and Fact. Titled “Catching the Wind from the Sun,” it explained NASA’s Genesis Discovery Mission and appeared in the November 1998 issue. Since then, I wrote magazine articles on topics ranging from aviation to education to science and technology. A couple of articles of mine had to do with business technology, for the Association of Corporate Travel Executives Quarterly. I’ve done some technical editing too, as well as press releases and radio ad copy for my church.
I really enjoyed articles I wrote for Gliding and Motorgliding International, an online magazine, and Soaring, the magazine of the Soaring Society of America.
I wrote a number of articles for Collegium, a magazine from the University of Houston. Some of my Collegium articles won awards: the 1999 Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) Special Award in the category of Science Writing, for two articles about technology research centers at UH; a Houston Press Club Second Place Award for an article on poet Vassar Millar; and a Women in Communications, Houston Chapter, first place award for the same article.
Over the years, I’ve done editing and book coaching for nonfiction writers. Here are two that stand out:
This book was authored by a someone with whom I worked as a writing teacher and coach, and I’m very pleased with the outcome:
Project Engineering: The Essential Toolbox for Young Engineers by Frederick Plummer (Butterworth-Heinemann, a division of Elsevier, June 15, 2007)
Science fiction, mystery and mainstream writers take note: if you have a story that somehow involves project engineering, and you don’t have a personal connection to that walk of life, get this book. It’ a terrific introduction to the world of project engineering and the thought processes of project engineers. And it’s a truly good read. Some of the early draft chapters kept me up past my bedtime because I found the manuscript so interesting.
I gave co-author Kristin Farry a great deal of editing and proofreading input, reading every chapter at least once and some of the chapters multiple times. This an excellent book and still in print. I’m glad I played a part in its creation.
Customer-Centered Products: Creating Successful Products Through Smart Requirements Management by Ivy F. Hooks and Kristin A. Farry (AMACOM, 2001)