Saturday, July 10, 2021

A Tribute to My Dad: William Robert Stanek

MAKE SOME NOISE TO SUPPORT MY DAD, William Stanek, and his many works of nonfiction and fiction! As some know, he retired from writing some years ago due to health and he needs to see your support, dear readers, to gather up the strength to return to the writing craft--and the books that have enriched and enlightened the lives of millions. Back when my dad was writing for Microsoft, many readers know I was a frequent contributor and also one of many who performed technical review of his work to ensure the books were as good technically as they could be. Beginning in 2015 or thereabouts, my dad made my contributor and co-author status official with cover credits, for which I am eternally grateful. As a contributor and co-author on some of his works for more than a decade now, I’ve had a front row seat to see him in action and was always awed by how he could understand the most complex subjects almost immediately upon reading them.

My dad’s the only person I know who could sit down and read a few thousand pages of whitepapers and other technical documentation and not only come away with a complete understanding of everything he read but also be able to fully implement the technologies he read about as if he’d been working with them all his life. My dad said that was a skill he learned from when he worked in Intelligence in the military and had to remember massive amounts of information to do his everyday work. Skills even the military seemed to recognize when they put him as a low-ranking serviceman in charge of the lines worked by those who many more stripes on their sleeves than him. His encyclopedic knowledge of all things Windows and Windows Server related is mind-boggling, and I honestly could never keep up. :)

My dad is the type of person who would sit down and read the current version of the ACPI specification (which usually runs over 1000 pages), and then remember all the relevant details and important updates when he wrote about it in his books days or weeks later. I guess you could call him a geek’s geek, except he’s not exactly a geek at all. You know what I mean if you’ve seen a picture of him from his glory days. If not, suffice to say he was built like an oak tree.

Growing up my dad was always there for my siblings and I, even if he was in the middle of a 20-hour work day, which he often was, as he often worked 7 days a week, 100+ hours a week, to keep up with the wild delivery schedules Microsoft required. Even so, every, single day, he made it a point that we as family ate our meals together. Breakfast and dinner at the least, and lunch if we were home from school. Every, single day, he greeted us at the door when we came home from school and at night he was there to tuck us in and read us stories. That’s a real dad, a superhero. I don’t know how he did it for all those years, because now that I’m working full-time myself, I find a regular 40-hour week to be exhausting in and of itself.

I would like to be able to keep working with my dad on future books, and I hope you, dear readers, want to keep reading his books. If so, please raise your voice and let your support be known!

 -Will

 

PS

While this is a bit late, I meant to post this on Father’s Day. Happy Father's Day!

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