One Book Out, One in the Hopper

After seven long months of writing, reading, coding, and learning, learning, learning, I finally have something to show for it. Jonathan Chaffer and I just had our first book published. When we started back in December, the goal was to write a single book of roughly 250 pages. Somewhere along the way, however, we got a little carried away and ended up writing so much that the publisher decided to split it into two books—a 380-page tutorial and an approximately 300-page reference.

The tutorial, titled Learning jQuery: Better Interaction Design and Web Development with Simple JavaScript Techniques, was officially published a couple weeks ago and is now available on the Packt Publishing web site and at Because it’s such a niche product, I doubt you’ll be able to pick it up at your local Barnes & Noble.

The second book has the tentative title, jQuery Reference Guide: A Comprehensive Exploration of the Popular JavaScript Library. We just have to look over the final proofs of a few chapters before it goes to the printer, so we’re hopeful that this one will be out sometime in August.

jQuery: write less, do more
Devo Freedom of Choice

The publisher even let me take a picture for the cover. If you don’t know anything about jQuery (and even if you do), you might wonder why I would squander the opportunity for a cover photo on a stack of dumbbell weights in the sand. Well, the weights mirror the shape of the jQuery logo, which is derived from the Devo energy dome. Also, in the book we refer to jQuery “doing the heavy lifting” for certain programming tasks. I took a few shots of the weights in my house, too, but the publisher liked the ones at the Lake Michigan beach better. This photo was taken in Holland, Michigan, right down the steps from my parents-in-law’s cottage.

This whole process has been a wonderful learning experience for me, and I’m finally letting myself feel some sense of accomplishment. I must say, though, that it will be very nice to have a little time for other things again. (By the way, my wife, who knows me better than I know myself, laughs at this notion, fully expecting to find me immersed in some new project before too long.)

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