Q: What is/are your specialist tech area(s)?
Joseph: My full time work is as faculty with the University of Colorado Boulder. I teach software and design classes for the College of Media, Communication and Information as Instructor of Technology for the Department of Advertising, Public Relations and Media Design. It’s wonderful to be able to teach this software to students and see the amazing work they produce! Previous my current position… I was involved in various roles having to do with software development for the University of Denver. My team and I build a lot of really cool stuff over the years and some of it is still heavily used. I also do a lot of tutorial and video based projects for Adobe from time to time. It’s all great fun since I’ve been fortunate enough to use the creative software I love for my entire career!
Q: How did you become an author for Packt? Tell us about your journey. What was your motivation for writing this book?
Joseph: I actually have authored a number of books for Packt – the first being ‘Flash Development for Android Cookbook’ in 2011. That was also the first book I’d ever written… though with this new release I’ve now written eleven books all together. I wanted to write ‘Mastering Adobe Animate 2021’ in particular because most of the existing Animate books are much more geared toward beginners and I feel the market could use something that goes beyond these books in both background and practical example.
Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?
Joseph: I’m always working in Adobe Animate for various teaching opportunities or giving feedback to the team at Adobe – so the research aspect is simply my day-to-day work with the software.
Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?
Joseph: No – the process of writing and editing was very smooth. The most challenging part is always hashing out the initial structure of a chapter… but once that settles into place, actually writing the content is quick and painless.
Q: What’s your take on the technologies discussed in the book? Where do you see these technologies heading in the future?
Joseph: One of the things I really enjoy about Adobe Animate is that it is able to target so many different platforms and file types. Some are used on the web, some for television and film, and others for interactivity and development purposes. It’s always great to see these various platforms expand and become more useful as time goes on… and as new platforms are introduced… Animate can take advantage of them as well!
Q: Why should readers choose this book over others already on the market? How would you differentiate your book from its competition?
Joseph: I do not like to see this book as in competition to other books. Rather, a work like this is complementary to many of the existing materials out there. Every author has a different take and focus on the software and its use… and all these perspectives are valid. Much of what is contained in this book expands upon or deepens the reader’s understanding of workflows and processes they may already be familiar with from other works… and hopefully makes their time with Animate something richer and more well-rounded as a result.
Q. What advice would you give to readers learning tech? Do you have any top tips?
Joseph: Don’t accept the given or predominant narrative around any particular technology – especially is overly negative. Most people don’t know what they are talking about and simply repeat given points ad nauseam. It creates a kind of stale energy around any subject when there is no opportunity for discussion, appreciation, and debate.
Q. Do you have a blog that readers can follow?
Joseph: Sure. My blog can be found at http://inflagrantedelicto.memoryspiral.com/
Q. Can you share any blogs, websites and forums to help readers gain a holistic view of the tech they are learning?
Joseph: There is the Adobe Animate blog: https://blog.adobe.com/en/topics/animate.html – also Ajay Shukla’s blog articles on the Adobe blog mainly focus on Animate: https://blog.adobe.com/en/authors/ajay-shukla.html Matthijs Clasener has a great set of videos on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/SoftTalk/ And I often stream Animate workflows Live on Behance: https://www.behance.net/JosephLabrecque
Q. How would you describe your author journey with Packt? Would you recommend Packt to aspiring authors?
Joseph: My editorial team on this book was superb. Everything came together very quickly and I was able to produce the materials in a matter of months due to having a highly organized team behind me. We had a really nice flow back and forth to solidify the book and ensure is was as free from error as possible. Being the author of so many books at this point – I can assure you this is not always the case!
Q. Do you belong to any tech community groups?
Joseph: I’ve been an Adobe Education Leader since 2007 and am also an Adobe Community Professional and a member of Adobe Partners by Design.
Q. How did you organize, plan, and prioritize your work and write the book?
Joseph: I developed the structure and topics I wanted to cover early on. What actually writing each chapter, I try to work from a general structure and then break things down to smaller pieces depending upon the material or any project examples being worked through. Certain tools or workflows that I wanted to include did bounce from one chapter to another at times either due to the fact that a chapter might be getting too large or that as a project evolved, certain items would be more or less suited to any current plan… it all works out though!
Q. What is that one writing tip that you found most crucial and would like to share with aspiring authors?
Joseph: If you are having trouble writing – just stop for a while. Do something else and come back to it later. Oftentimes, the pages will just emerge one after another as if from a stream if you just take a little time to switch things up a bit and let your mind breathe.
You can find Joseph’s book on Amazon by following this link: Please click here