Since June, after our second research trip to Italy, Paul and I have been working long days, long nights, weekdays and weekends, through holidays, birthdays and family get-togethers. Despite the long hours away from our families, they’ve cheered us on when the mounting work seemed to never end and the time away grew longer. Thanks to them.
Our return to Colorado was immediately followed by a wonderful visit from Agostino Arioli and his fellow Birrificio Italiano workers, Maurizio, Giulio and Giancarlo. It was great having them here in the United States and we had a wonderful visit. They soon left and I went to work. I pulled serious hours, as I said before, working from 9 am until 10 pm taking few breaks with the exception of dinner with the family. When they went to bed, I returned to work until the wee hours. Often I managed a few hours here and there of sleep to keep me going. I didn’t drink coffee for over a week once I had finished.
By November, we were nearly there. The final push to get the manuscript to the editors caused Paul and I to work 17 hour days. I simply moved in with him for the final two weeks. But we got it done. Then the handoff was made. Paul took over the hard hours creating sketches, painting, pulling photos, designing and editing. I don’t think he’s quite recovered yet.
With so many hours devoted to the book, our other projects that keep us in business, including this blog, were set aside. That meant a long couple of weeks catching up. And catching up we have done. Now what?
We wait for about three weeks for the publisher’s design team to finish laying out the book, including the foreword by Eric Wallace from Left Hand Brewery. Once the design department has finished their part, we will receive proofs to look over and make final adjustments and approvals. If all goes well it’s off to the printer and we will soon have a book.
For those of you not familiar with the publishing process, this is how it’s done; except, usually it’s a yearlong project, not months. But as you all know, our goal was to have this book out for the Craft Brewers Conference in April held this year in our hometown of Denver. Many people, as you know, are still unaware of the incredible Italian craft beer movement, but not for long.
Since our project began, Italy has seen growth to over 600 craft breweries, yet a stiff tax law has been imposed, the absolute nightmare scenario, which threatens to close some of these breweries and possibly cripple the momentum of the entire movement. But, perhaps, as often is the case in a crisis, this may be the glue that finally holds them together. Unity has not been a hallmark of Italian craft beer movement, but a campaign has been started by Unionbirrai to halt this unfair taxation that sees craft breweries paying ever-higher taxes while the wine industry pays none. We will see, and I will keep you updated.
When our book, Italy: Beer Country, is available we will let everyone know.
As always, we can’t thank the many supporters behind this project enough.
Till next week and our next blog,