Recently I was approached to co-author a textbook. It would be about financial derivatives in Asia, with a focus on the legal aspects. This topic happens to be exactly what I do for a living (and have been doing for a living, for many years now). So I have the right type of professional knowledge and expertise.
I've checked out my co-author's profile. As he may want his privacy, I shall not mention his name here. All I shall say is that his credentials are pretty respectable. Among other things, he has previously written more than half a dozen legal textbooks, which were published by two well-known legal publishers, namely Sweet & Maxwell, and Lexis Nexis.
So he has solid experience in writing legal textbooks, and I have solid experience in derivatives. I guess we could make a pretty good team. Right now, we are at a preliminary stage of planning - sorting out the contents page, which is an important first step as it will give a clear framework for the entire book.
I do not know how long it will take to get the entire manuscript written. I suspect that it would take somewhere between 9 months and 2.5 years. Obviously this project will require a fair amount of commitment and hard work. But I am willing to go for it because I think that it is a very worthwhile goal, with good rewards to reap for all that labour.
Among other things, successfully writing and publishing a textbook is an excellent showcase of one's professional knowledge. Furthermore, the shelf life of such an achievement is fairly long. Years after the book is published, people in the relevant circles may still have a copy in their personal library, and will remember you because of that.
But quite importantly, I also enjoy writing, and editing, that sort of stuff. Organizing facts and ideas onto a written page is intrinsically appealing and interesting to me.
After Two Baby Hands was published, I always knew that one day I'd get around to a second book. I thought that it could be poetry again, or perhaps a collection of short stories, or a novella. But now it looks like Book 2 will be a legal textbook. Who would have guessed? But I'm game for it.