by Eileen M. Beasley1993


Our writers' group in '93
Produced its first anthology -
A shoestring product, though quite neat,
Hand photocopied sheet by sheet,
A kitchen table-top production,
With emphasis on cost reduction.

Flushed with success in '94
We set our sights on something more;
Printed and bound - a proper book,
An elegant professional look!
We searched for sponsorship to pay
and Reading Borough saved the day.
Three hundred pounds the Council gave.
The rest the group will have to save.

Of manuscripts there was no lack,
Prolific writers all came back
With poems and stories by the score
Until at last we said, 'No more!'
But only those involved would credit
Just what a pain it was to edit)
Perfectionists who changed their rhymes
Or altered poems a dozen times;
The passion and the altercations
At some suggested alterations;
The script withdrawn, the late revision
Oh for an editor's decision!
We read it through and doubly checked,
But still found errors to correct
A word mis-spelt, a missing letter;
Surely the typist could do better!
The little things we overlook
When too familiar with the book.

Next we designed the publication
And tried to get a fixed quotation.
Figures are vague, so we kept finding
Depends on numbers, paper, binding.
Before we can confirm the price,
The estimates must be precise.
The manuscript is now complete,
To get this far was quite a feat.

The printer wants the file on disk,
Converting text involves some risk.
From Wordstar, ASCII then to Word
That's where the next mistakes occurred!