One of the Amazon reviewers for Blender Foundations mentioned that later in the book, I stop providing shortcut keys for certain procedures, and that he had to go back in the book to look them up. He suggested that shortcuts should be bolded in the text to make them easy to find. It reminded me that I have a pretty specific methodology and reasoning for how I present shortcuts in the text, and I wanted to explain it, both to anyone using the book, and togive other people who are writing tutorials to some “behind the scenes.”
I try to carefully and deliberately manage how I deal with keyboard shortcuts in a book. I always present them in bold on their first occurrence, and keep providing them a number of times afterward. Eventually though, and especially in complex tutorials, I assume that people have become familiar enough with the basics that I can elide them from the text. In fact, I consider that a part of the learning process: it says that at a certain point, you should know this. If you don’t, go back in the text, find it and learn it! My goal for a book or tutorial isn’t just to get you to push the right button or make a pretty picture, but to actually learn the material.
For little-used commands, I will generally repeat the shortcut if a long time has passed since it was last used. However, for common items, I drop the reference after a while. That’s also why I include a little section on the best way to learn the shortcuts. I also usually mention when a shortcut is a “must learn” and when you’ll be okay not spending the brain power.
So, his observation that I don’t always provide shortcut references is correct, but there is a method to what I’m doing. The annoyance and grief you go through looking for the shortcut in the book is but a shadow of the pain that it will cause you if you don’t know that shortcut when you actually start doing your own work. School isn’t always fun.
Judging by the number of people who have told me that Blender skills never “stuck” for them until they tried my books, I’d say that for the most part it’s a sound methodology.