Unexpectedly Prompt

Every now and then, just to keep you on your toes, things happen off schedule. Things like the printer sending your book to you.  Now usually…usually things get delayed and you have to bang your head against the wall and wail and wonder why the universe is taunting you. But occasionally, it works the other way.  Occasionally, things come early.  That’s what has happened here.

The latest mini book is arriving from the printer early.  Quite early in fact.  So early that I get to spend this weekend getting the website set up and doing all the background machinations necessary to put it up for sale.  Full details will come on Monday, but let’s just say that by this time next week, the book will be in the mail!  In the meantime, how about a quick cover shot and a little peak at the individual projects?

ndw cover s

sampler view s

Make a Little Trouble

Remember how, when I’d show you projects over the last few months, I’d say ‘yes, they’ll be part of a new mini book in the fall?’  Well, that mini book went off to the printer this morning!

It includes the socks the rail bridge ate, the socks that played chicken with the train, the socks that got us sternly told off by the security guard (I see I neglected to post about that, perhaps I’ll have to remedy that soon), the mitt that got away…temporarily, the cuff that’s firmly pinned in place, and the hats that took a field trip.  It’s a rather fun little collection if I do say so myself, and I can’t wait to show you all the proper pictures when it gets closer to release.  That release will be either the end of October or the first week in November, not quite sure yet, but I promise to keep you informed.

But for now…now I’m going to do the only reasonable thing to do upon completion of a big project.  I’m going to take the day off.  (Well, at least take the day off from knitting stuff…there’s rather a large pile of house stuff that wants my attention.)  There may even be a celebratory dinner (the ‘book’s at the printer’ dinner has become a tradition ’round these parts).

More Obliging Still

Sometimes you go to the sketchy parts of town to find the right atmosphere, and sometimes you find it closer to home.  Perhaps just around the corner, in the garage of an abandoned house.  You know, the garage with the hole in the roof and the tree growing out the middle of it and the distinct cant to the left.  Not the best thing ever when it comes to, say, property values, but very handy indeed when you need to grab a quick knitting pic after dinner.

That’s Space Cadet Creations’ Astrid yarn in a one of a kind color way.  This is another of the projects that will be in this fall’s mini book.  I’m putting the finishing touches on that project and can’t wait to have it done and off to the printer!

The Order of Things

By this point, you guys know me.  You know there is always a Plan.  Now the details may change, and the specifics are sometimes a bit hazy, but the existence of the Plan is constant.  The Plan keeps me on track.  The Plan is how I know what the next 4 books will be.  The Plan is all-knowing and all-powerful.

But I also tend to keep the Plan private.  I figure you guys don’t particularly want to know the details of what I’m plotting for three books from now.  That’s years down the road, and if I chat too much about it now, you’ll be terribly bored by the time it comes up.  Striking the balance between spilling my guts and never saying anything at all is a bit of a trick.  My natural position on the matter is something along the lines of ‘don’t talk to strangers,’ but that has its limitations.

All of which is a very long and rambling introduction to the next step in the Plan.  Do you remember the mini book I told you about back in April?  Then we had the photoshoot in May?  Yeah, so it’s just about time for it to make its debut!  We’ll start with the cover for now.

It’s actually been off at the printer for weeks and weeks already, meaning that I have the electronic version sitting right here on my computer.  But I learned with Knitter’s Curiosity Cabinet that it’s a bit complicated if you have preorders go on for too long or have the e book come out too much in advance of the physical book.  It leads to record keeping headaches.  So I’ve been displaying unheard of restraint and keeping quiet about the whole thing.  I’m fine with keeping quiet about things when they’re far off in the future.  But keeping quiet about them at this stage is just killer.

But no more.  The time for restraint is past, and the time for official announcements and timetables and general blabbing has come.  On Tuesday the 24th of July preorders for Rabble Rousers will open.  As usual, there will be some sort of special offer for folks who get it during the preorder phase.  One week later, on Tuesday the 31st of July, the e-version will go live.  Two weeks later, on (or possibly shortly before) the 14th of August, the paper ones will go in the mail.

Short and sweet…no waiting for ages and ages for your book to come in the mail (and no organizational drama on this end for me).

And don’t worry, I’ll show you lots more about the collection between now and then, and I’ll let you know the details of the different ways you can order.  But for now, I’ll content myself with ‘hey, look, it’s the next step in the Plan!’

Success

We had the photo shoot.  I remembered to bring both the camera and all the knitting.  No one died of heat stroke.  We did not get arrested (opinions vary on whether we were, strictly speaking, allowed to be in that building at that time).  All in all, the day was a rousing success.  Oh, and we got good pictures too!  These are just a few of the favorites of the moment.  There are lots more to be seen later.

Tumult cowl:

Clamor hat:

Uproar cuff:

Think Clouds

Ok all, the photo shoot for the mini book is tomorrow.  I actually sewed the buttons on today (rather than waiting till tomorrow morning).  All I have left to do now is lint roller everything one more time and finalize the shot list.  What I’d like all of you to do is wish us up some clouds.  It’s supposed to be warm and sunny.  I’d prefer cool and breezy myself.  I can manage the warm if I have to, but it will be easier to get the pics I want if it’s not too sunny.  Of course we’ve got lots of inside spots that will be great either way, and I know we’ll come up with something cool no matter what.  But if you happen to have magical weather-controlling super powers, if you could send some nice gray clouds this way, that would be nifty.

Stacks

I feel a tiny bit bad that it’s been so long since I’ve put out a pattern.  The last one was Chamfer in what, February?  Now to be fair, the e version of The Knitter’s Curiosity Cabinet did go live in March, so it’s not like you’ve not got something to keep your needles busy.  But still, I’m used to putting out an individual pattern every month or so, and the longer time frame is making me a bit twitchy.  But never fear, it’s all in the service of a bigger project!

After seeing how much fun Knitter’s Curiosity Cabinet was, I decided to experiment with taking some of the things I’d usually do as individual patterns and combining them into a mini book.  That’s what all the things you’ve seen around here since March or so will be used for.  I think it will work well, but it does mean that the once a month timeline sort of falls by the wayside.  Now I know waiting’s no fun, and I also know I find waiting easier if I know what’s going on in the background while I’m waiting.  So I thought I’d let you know where things stood.

The photo shoot is this Sunday.  As of this morning, all the projects for the mini book are done and blocked.  I’ve even got proof!  The only thing left to do is sew buttons one one piece (anyone taking bets on whether that will happen Sunday morning).

Down at the bottom there are the Ruction cowl and mitts in Malabrigo Arroyo.  They’re reversible, and I’m totally smitten with them.  Next up the stack is the Clamor hat in Briar Rose Wistful.  It’s scrunchy and slouchy and looks unreasonably adorable on everyone.  Peeking out from the middle is the Tumult cowl in Handmaiden Silk Twist.  I think it might be my secret favorite, and I want the photoshoot over with so I can wear it.  Next up are the Fracas hat and cuffs in Schaefer Yarn Company Nichole.  My secret plan is to send them home with Lauren as a thank you for her help modeling.  And on the top there are the Uproar cuffs in Plucky Knitter MCN Primo.  These are knitting crack and you should never ever start making them as you won’t want to stop.  You’ve been warned.

All the patterns are done, and testing is wrapping up.  The pattern text is over with the tech editor, and I’m finalizing the other, non-pattern, text this week.  The plan is to have the files to the printer in early June.  That means the e version will likely be available in late July, and the paper version available a week or two later.

Alright, I feel better now.  It’s still not quite as good as having a pattern ready to go for you.  But hopefully it works to show that I’m not just lazing on the patio sipping lemonade!

Less Crumpled

Still not benefiting from a full on proper block, but at least here it’s pulled a bit smoother than before.  The difference is encouraging.  With any luck at all, I’ll have it finished tomorrow.

Next will come a vigorous blocking session for all the mini book pieces.  The Boy and I checked out the planned location for the photoshoot this weekend, and I think we’ll be able to get some really good shots.

In the meantime, I’ve been putting all of your bugbite solutions to the test.  So far, Benadryl seems to be working best for me.  I’ll continue the experiments over the rest of the summer.  Anyone want to lay odds on me deciding to get a pet bat and solve the problem at the source?

Crumpled

This is the final piece for the mini book I mentioned the other day. It’s still in the ever-exciting ‘crumpled pile of crap’ phase that most knitting projects have to endure.  I have great faith though, and I’m pretty darn sure it will be properly cute once I have a bit more done (and once it gets a suitably vicious block).

The mini book is coming along well.  Next up is a wee photo shoot, maybe even this coming weekend (which is good because if we wait too much longer we risk heat stroke while modeling knitwear, and that’s no fun at all), a final edit or two, and then it goes zipping off to the printer.  Barring some really exciting disaster, it should be out this summer.  Maybe even as early as July, but August is likely more realistic.  I’ll come back with more info about it in a week or two, but until then, let’s pretend this was one of those lengthy and engaging updates you were hoping for.

You See, What Happened Was

So, um, I accidentally sort of wrote another book.  Well most of another book.

I don’t mean Book the Third.  Book the Third is (or rather will be) a full on proper book.  The big kind.  The kind that takes a year to put together and involves enlisting the help of photographers and stylists and models and editors and print coordinators and distributors and yarn companies and librarians and likely a competent bartender towards the end there.

This is more of a mini book.  Something quite a bit heftier than an individual pattern, but not nearly the all-consuming undertaking of a big book.  I don’t exactly have the word for it.  Baby book isn’t right (and has too many other connotations), booklet sounds too puny, book sounds a bit too grand.  For now I’m thinking of it as a mini book.

It sounds a bit crazy to do this right now, but it’s actually more or less perfect for how my world works at the moment.  I know I’ve complained here before (what, me, complain…but I’m the soul of stoicism) that it feels like I don’t have time to actually knit when I’m in the middle of writing one of the big books.  I’ve also spent a fair amount of time moaning about the timeline of the big books (Knitter’s Curiosity Cabinet was done in March when the ebook came out, but no one sees the paper version till June).  I’m not the patient type, I don’t like all that waiting around for months.

So I’m doing a mini book.  It solves both of those problems.  It’s a slightly smaller scale production, which means the timeline will move much faster (no waiting weeks on photographs or layout, no waiting months on a massive print job).  I’ll also be knitting the samples myself, so I’ll have something on the needles as Book the Third comes together (thereby lessening the chances I’ll go completely off the deep end).

As for the the patterns themselves, they’ll likely be seven of them.  Six of the patterns are already written (hence the ‘um I accidentally wrote a book’ bit at the top of the post).  Five of them are already knit or mostly knit.  Testing is underway right now (this is where I take a moment to reassure you that even though this is happening on an accelerated timeline, the patterns will all still be tested and edited, I want this to be fast, not insane).  The layout is mostly done.  There are a few more things to do, and I’m sure I’ll tell you way more about this than you want to hear over the next few months, but I’d say look for this one to be out around August.