Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Who am I?

I am a publisher.

The question of identity is a central part of anyone’s existence. In my case being a publisher is the central part of my identity!

But it was not the case before. “A publisher” a few years ago replaced “ a teacher” as the central part of my personal identity. Although I retired as a Full Professor and as a Dean I had for almost 20 years seen myself first and foremost as a teacher. Gradual promotions and the introduction of various audit systems within the British higher education took the joy out of being a teacher and I decided to focus my attention on another part my identity. I have been a practising publisher ever since I entered secondary school education. Then at the age of 50 I came out and felt that being a publisher was my main avenue of serving humankind.

It is worthwhile saying that I was born in Isfahan (in the centre of Iran, a city of great many blue Mosques) where people are born to be good with money matters! A part of being a publisher involves making a little bit of money go a long way!

Most of my childhood was signified by the fact that I was very thin, as I did not like the taste of meat. My parents thought I was clever but lazy. I enjoyed reading books, any books, on any subject. Seeing the film Farenheit 451 (based on Ray Bradury’s book of the same title) articulated for me what I had felt about books. Books and other forms of representation of ideas via words were my favourite cultural artefacts. In the same way as music, art or performance resonates with some people, books gave me a handle on life – that of my own and of others.

I got into editing the school magazine, as it was a way of getting out of doing the compulsory Physical Education classes. By the time I was sixteen I was being published in the national press under various pseudonyms, as well as competing in the national school journalism competitions.

I wanted to become a journalist but my parents did not approve of that career choice, as it was dangerous at that time in Iran with Shah’s regime. I ended up enrolling for an electrical engineering degree. I managed to publish my first book. My second, a children’s story, was turned down by the censors.

7 comments:

Graziella Tonfoni said...

It is thanks to Masoud Yazdani that a huge amount of my handwritten materials
could turn into a set of really visionary, highly dense, and fully advanced
books.

More precisely, it was obvious that some of my most advanced theories, back in
1996, needed careful daily testing and also demanded to be shared somehow, as
to be allowed to turn into a whole diluted set of multiple versions, over the
years, whose verified main topics, could be accessed by the international
scholarly community respectfully. It took me a whole book (I Diari della
Creatività Scientifica e Letteraria di Graziella Tonfoni , Pitagora Editrice
Bologna) which was published in Italian in 2005, to tell my autobiographic
story of scientific dedication this daily struggling for theoretical and
methodological perfection, also reflecting on my literary style.

I mean to acknowledge Masoud Yazdani’s continuing efforts in supporting me my
scientific and literary intent. I want, to indicate the strength and tremendous
courage of the Publisher of Intellect books to make all of this happen so
patiently and so honestly.

So this may infact be a relaunching and refocussing on the originating meaning
and original intent of the very first edition of my originating book on
Communication Patterns and Textual Forms, original version published in 1996 by
Intellectbooks, as read first and approved by Masoud Yazdani, and then
commented by himself personally, and then read for English spelling by Wendy
Momen, and then formatted as dense as possible by Robin Beecroft.

A book of scientific visions and literary stylistic models, as illustrating the
author’s, myself, most advanced theories while in the carving and testing of
it, indicating the existence of one more collateral and different theory, I was
parallely carrying in my mind.

All of this came for me in addition to my extended and widely published work,
which had been known for her scholarly action and extensive teaching of it,
i.e. Writing as a visual art.

Before actually being sure about my statements I wanted a book of committment to
exclusively undisclosed and exclusively safe testing at noone’s risk.
Masoud supported my efforts which were against any economical interest of him,
as it was infact about publishing materials while still waiting to be fully
sure if my theory could really work at no hazardous side effects.

I would like to call it a book of silence and modesty at no expectation of
immediate scholarly reward, therefore manifesting the courage to only partially
indicate the existence of a solid and new and extremely powerful model running
in linguistics and physics, and therefore not a derivative of any artificial
intelligence based approach.

While I was infact still fully involved into artificial intelligence and I still
am now, it took courage to the Publisher to actually invest into my paralleling
work on such new nuclear linguistics (n-new) theory of language, very much
unheard of at the times and even unspelled by myself.

I wanted to test each of my assumptions as to be entirely convinced myself they
were in fact accurate.

My Communication Patterns and Textual Forms approach, shows a very difficult
choice, and a really harsh path, and also a peculiar style too, as it was about
describing something n-new, using still a look simple language.

But readers should look carefully, as each single word and paragraph is just the
entrance door to many unfolded and to be disclosed paragraphs, and lines, each
of them activating more and more chains of semantically sound reactions, and
pragmatically consistent aggregations, all along sentences.

This is one of the main peculiar aspects of such unique theory, as conceived and
written exclusively by one single woman scientist, also very much involved in
literature, beside linguistics, and very concerned about science and
responsibility issues.

Masoud was involved with the planning of Communication Patterns and Textual
Forms. There was a brilliant idea of full relevance to this book structure at
the time, which was based upon Masoud Yazdani’s encouragement and suggestion,
which was infact to create a really entirely n-new way of packaging this
already very different book anyway. Masoud Yazdani invited myself, therefore
supporting a woman scientist, who had dedicated so much of her life to carving
each single sentence and line, to make her book ready to be turned into a
multiple readership essay.

As President of Intellect his suggestions were also a guarantee that such
innovation would be acceptable and therefore approved to appear in print and be
freely circulated as to allow multiple versions later on to come.
His concession was fully legitimate and extremely generous, as some of the
copies were meant to be for free access, and others were just circulated in
limited sets as they required adaptation skills and flexibility to each of
their translators.

This shows a full dedication to ethics in publishing, and you see well why I
feel the need to express my appreciation. As for our agreement at the time,
each future version was allowed freely but also had to be bound to the very
promise to quote and represent exactly and precisely the original spirit of the
n-new version, i.e. CPTF, as to provide an example to those scientists, who
rush to conclusions and do not wait until they are fully sure of their
assessments.

It was Masoud Yazdani a Scholar and Professor himself, the one encouraging me to
continue along this healthy and wise line of political action, also
materializing into a very specific table of contents, meant to incorporate
reading suggestions of relevance to a highly diverse audience. So this is also
the story of a highly competent and very visionary publisher who has allowed
and supported one single woman author, encouraging her to organize a chapter as
atypical as Part Three, which could be turned into a documentary titled Easiest
Writer (indicating the joy of writing science literarily as manifested by the
author herself a literary scientist).

Any of my scientific and literary actions effectively defined by Masoud a post
modern attitude toward technology are all to be referred back to a woman in
science and literature committed to accuracy in interpretation for scholarly
conflicts containment and editorial policies strategies verification. A tag for
full reward to Masoud Yazdani and to Intellect books as first publisher ever in
women scientists for peace in literary studies, should be handed out for due
recognition and I hope my interview is serving the purpose of starting the
chain of gratitude many authors should in fact express in written words to him
and all of you.

Gareth Long said...

Hi,

I begged my parents for an Acorn Electron for Christmas, 1983, and also
begged them to give me the manuals in advance after we received it on
November 4th that year. They gave in.

The well-written Electron manual gave me an insight into the internals, and
machine language, before I turned the machine for the first time. Your book,
"Start Programming With The Electron" turned me on to the idea of
programming 'well' - even before I began.

Although my family pushed me to train in other diciplines, computers were my
obsession; I was self-taught in this respect - by 'self', I meant by reading
books, yours being the first. I now teach others, and have been assigned to
Singapore from the UK, to teach people here to apply creativity to their
knowledge in terms of software engineering.

I am now the software platform manager at a mobile handset developer, after
having worked in platform development and software engineering at several
companies for the last ten years.

I would like to thank you for turning my enthusiasm into a skill. You are
the nearest I've had to a lecturer in computer skills in my career.

I feel that I needed to hunt you down via the internet to tell you this :-)

Once again, thank you; your work created my career.

Cheers,

Gareth


Gareth Long

Software Platform Manager

Sendo Limited

Sendo Singapore Pte Ltd.

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