Milestones

I think I’ve explained before that writing books isn’t either as linear or as quick a process as I initially thought.  It goes in loops, at least for me.  There’s a general process for each project.  There’s some variation, but it usually goes something like this:

  • pick yarn
  • get yarn
  • play with graph paper
  • swatch
  • rinse and repeat as necessary to beat the swatch into submission
  • do some math
  • finalize swatch
  • finalize notes
  • take the notes from the graph paper and turn them into a real pattern
  • get sample knit (and do the first round of testing in the process)
  • try really hard to arrange to test the pattern with other knitters and to get the other sizes tested
  • send the pattern to a tech editor
  • incorporate tech editor’s genius suggestions

And while all of that is going on for the individual patterns (especially the sample and test knitting part), all the rest of the non-pattern stuff gets created. That’s it’s own special sort of work, but it is at least a bit closer to regular writing and doesn’t have some of the special quirks of pattern writing.

The result of this whole swirly, non-linear process, is that it’s a bit hard to know how far along in the project you are at any given time.  There’s not really a good way to judge progress.  And really, as far as I can tell, done is an exceptionally relative term when it comes to books.

But that doesn’t mean there can’t be milestones.  And today, I’ve decided I reached one.  Today, half the patterns for the next book are swatched, mathed, and written.  They’re not knit, they’re not edited, and they’re not in any way done.  But they are figured out, and that’s officially progress.  See?  I’m thinking these are going to be fun.