In the last installment, I wrote of how WordWare Publishing asked me to write a book about Visio. I ended up writing nine:
"Visio 4.0 for Everyone"
"Learn Visio 5.0"
"Learn Visio 5.0 for Advanced Users" (customizing and programming)
"Learn to Diagram with Visio 2000" (a very basic book)
"Learn Visio 2000"
"Learn Visio 2000 for Advanced Users"
(You can purchase the last two as PDF books from my eBooks.onLine site. Click their title names, above.)
Through to the Visio 2000 series, my books were the best selling books in the market. And then Microsoft decided to publish its own book, "Visio 2002 Inside and Out." And it killed the market for me and the other authors, just as Microsoft has killed so many niches of the software market.
Here's how badly the market died. The 2000-series of books sold so well, that I hired Frank Zander to write two chapters on programming VBA in Visio. I paid him $1,500 for the work. "Learn Visio 2002 for Advanced Users" sold so poorly that it didn't even make enough royalties to cover his pay.
The Microsoft Press book became the best seller, which was too bad, because it was written as if it had to pass approval by its marketing department. Readers won't find a single reference to a problem, bug, or difficulty in Visio.
Bitter? I sure am. A series of books that gave me tens of thousands of dollars income a year was killed off by a company with $40 billion in the bank. The monopolist didn't need to choke off the modest income for a half-dozen authors, but it chose to do so anyhow.
Reminds me of a saying: "What's your's is mine, and what's mine is mine."