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I would say that you should explain your credentials to the doctor and let
make the decision of what you have to contribute. He may not be looking for
anyone with any extra knowledge of the subject.
That being said, though, I suggest you be very clear before you sign up just
doctor wants you to do, what the schedule for the project is, and the
doctor's commitment to writing the book in the first place. I have a friend
who took a similar project with a noted specialist (don't ask me who--she
would never say). After they made the deal, the details of which I do not
he basically dumped a bunch of books and articles in her hands and expected
her to write the book. After months of diligently researching and writing
she had no success at all in getting this guy to even review her drafts. I
do not believe the project was ever even finished. He always claimed to
be too busy to spend any time on it. And after all this work, all she would
gotten anyway (except a small salary) was a co-authors credit.
> Recently, I was given a lead to a writing job coauthoring a book with a
> medical toxicologist. The doctor is looking for someone who is interested
> the topic and interested in writing, but not necessarily an expert in
> medical toxicology. As a writing student--and intern--focusing on science
> writing, I feel that I lack the experience to do justice in this, which I
> see as primarily an editing position. I will refer the doctor to the job
> postings on this list and at NCSWA. However, one of the doctors main
> interests--"...how mold affects the indoor air and may make people
> sick"--relates directly to my internship at Home Energy Magazine. Indoor
> quality, as this is known in building science, is an area I am learning
> writing about in my internship.
> It seems ideal to have jobs that can be mutually beneficial, as these two
> could, so I hate to completely pass-up this opportunity. Does anyone have
> any ideas how I could contribute while maintaining my integrity as a
> by not out stepping my current skill set?
> Chris Morris
> P.O. Box 1315
> El Granada, CA 94018
> Fax: 650-726-7797
> E-mail: cmorris -at- sfsu -dot- edu