Cecily Fitch was at the end of her long journey of becoming a published author. She was a bit worn down from the long process and yet still glowing with excitement at finishing. Her book Cut the Cr*p: a Book About Modern Cloth Diapers is almost ready to be printed and released!
Hey Cecily! I bet writing this book took every second you had! How much time do you think you have invested? Honestly, how did you even make this happen in the first place? I know how hard it is to squeeze ANYTHING in when you have little kids. And this seems like an impossible task. You are obviously driven, but you also must be super organized as well. All I can tell you is WOW!
To be honest, I lost count at 1,000 hours of research, and that doesn’t include any of the writing and photography.
I fell in love with cloth diapers quickly and wanted to learn everything I could about them. The more I learned, the more I was amazed at all they had to offer and the more I wanted to share that with as many other parents as possible. So I got to writing.
It took me about 3 years to write and what it required even more than organizational skills was determination. I quickly realized that I wouldn’t be able to sit down and knock out the project in a few dedicated months because that would conflict with my most important role and goals as a mother to my young children. I couldn’t imagine losing months of some of the most magical time life has to offer.
So I resigned myself to embracing the old cliche “slow and steady wins the race.” I did my research while my babies napped on me and slowly got to writing one hour at a time each night.
That really is how I did it, one hour, each night, over 3 years and the book is finally ready to publish!
Wow, only 1000 hours? LOL Very impressive. Some smart person I know once told me that it’s not passion that keeps us going. It’s determination. What you have done with Cut the Cr*p: a Book About Modern Cloth Diapers is very special.
You mentioned that you used an editor to help you get the book done. Had you worked with someone before? Or did you have to find them? I’m curious how you choose who you worked with and what was the process like.
This was my first time working with a professional editor. My sister is a published author with several traditional publishing houses in addition to self-publishing a book. She was able to direct me to some Indie author groups where I received recommendations for different editors.
I researched each one’s background, projects they’d worked on, and had calls with several until I found one I believed would be the best fit for my project. There are many types of editing and editors–which to be honest was very surprising–from developmental editing, copy editing, line editing, and more.
My editor worked with me on the overall flow of the manuscript as well as the structural integrity of my sentences and paragraphs. I truly have a new, deep respect for what goes into creating a good book.
After her first read through she suggested a large overhaul of the book and to work on cutting out at a minimum 20,000 words. I was 9 months pregnant and unsurprisingly devastated to get this feedback.
But as I looked over my work I knew she was right, and I wanted to produce the best product I possibly could to help parents learn to cloth diaper. So I took her suggestion and got to work again.
So cool to get a peek behind the curtain.
You mentioned setbacks. Were there many more?
I wouldn’t want to not ask about triumphs though. Besides finally getting a finished version of the book in your hands, were there other moments that made you stop and appreciate what you were really accomplishing?
Nothing else in the process felt quite like a setback, it was just a constant flow of learning about another new task I needed to accomplish before being ready to publish my book.
Sometimes I just have to look back on this journey and chuckle at my naivety early on. Originally, I thought that I would publish in April of 2022, so you could say I’m just a little behind schedule. I took a break when my second child was born and then have just steadily accomplished each task as I’m able.
Finishing the first draft of the book felt like a huge relief. Everything that had been on my mind and in my heart that I wanted to share with other parents about cloth diapering was now out in words. It felt really amazing to know that I had gotten it all out.
Another great moment was seeing the first formatted draft of the book–when all of the photos and text were in place. It looked so beautiful and I could finally start to imagine my work as a real book that real parents would be holding someday.
Cecily was so kind to take the time and share her journey with us. Her book is sure to be a must-have for any new parent wanting to live a more sustainable life.
Cut the Cr*p: A Book About Modern Cloth Diapers is currently in production with a release date of late 2023. Follow along for updates!
Jenn is a long-time cloth diaper educator and a passionate small business advocate. She has worked in the reusable diaper industry for over a decade, helping millions of families via her websites All About Cloth Diapers, Thinking About Cloth Diapers and Cloth Diaper Geek as well as hundreds of small businesses during that time. Her goal always to provide simple, reliable information.