Craftsanity

I was recently interviewed about my work and Inventive Weaving on episode 176 of the Craftsanity podcast.

If you want to know more about the story behind the book, give it a listen. It’s a great way to pass the time while threading a loom, which is what I was doing when I played it.

It was tremendous fun chatting with Jennifer Ackerman-Haywood on the phone, and it reminded me how much I loved talking to other artists when I was producing Weavecast.

So much so that I’ve revamped the Weavecast website, separating it out from the now-archival WeaveZine site.

I also plan to produce new episodes, not at the monthly cadence I did before. But quarterly.

In other publication news, I recently heard from my editor at Storey that Inventive Weaving is going into a second printing! That means people are finding and enjoying the book. A big thank you to everyone who’s reading the book and recommending it to friends.

After spending years weaving and writing for a book, it’s great to have that book find its audience.

Happy Weaving!

Friday: Columbia Gorge Fiber Festival

I had a wonderful time at the Columbia Gorge Fiber Festival. It’s a new festival, I believe this was it’s fourth year.  It was small and had a great vibe, reminding me quite a bit of the Madrona Winter Retreat in Tacoma.

Friday night, there was a book signing with all the teachers and authors attending the event. I had the pleasure of meeting another Storey author, Lea Redmond.

IMG_2998She wrote Knit the Sky, which is about applying the creative process to knitting. It’s an innovative and lovely approach. In one project you use a scarf as a weather journal, in another you track the growth of a child. My favorite was the moon cowl. Half is white, and the other black, and you adjust how you wear it to match the current phase of the moon. Here I am wearing the cowl in the half-moon position.

IMG_3001Judith MacKenzie, my first weaving teacher was there. It felt full circle to have her there, sharing my journey from non-weaver to author of a newly published weaving book.

IMG_3021Another full-circle moment was re-connecting with Sarah Anderson. Once, traveling back together on an airplane after teaching at the Golden Gate Fiber Institute, she quietly confessed, “I just sold a book to Storey.” I leaned over and whispered back, “Me, too.”

She finished her book first, but I got there in the end.

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The fun and irrepressible Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (aka The Yarn Harlot) decided we needed a selfie, so this happened. I’m impressed she was able to fit us all in there.

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She offered to send the photo out to anyone who had Instagram, so five minutes later I had it installed and running on my phone. If you want to follow my feed, I’ve registered as @synemitchell.

In other news, I am back on the writing wagon. Today I wrote for 30 minutes.

Book release day: Inventive Weaving

For previous book releases, I’ve made a pilgrimage to the local bookseller to take a celebratory picture standing next to the book on the shelves.

With my time almost completely taken up with working at Google and spending time with my family, I’m not sure when I’ll have time to get to a local yarn or book store. So if you see a copy out in the wild, give it a pat for me, will you?

Cover for Inventive Weaving

This book is the culmination of four years of work, research, weaving that went well, weaving that didn’t, fear, day jobs, procrastination, more work, and heroic efforts on the part of my editor.

I hope you like it.

P.S. Got my 30 minutes of novel writing in yesterday and today. By the skin of my teeth today, but done!

Columbia Gorge Fiber Festival

My new book, Inventive Weaving, is scheduled to be published tomorrow, though I know that some folks who attended Rhinebeck or pre-ordered the book on Amazon have already gotten their hands on copies.

This upcoming weekend I’ll be promoting the book at the Columbia Gorge Fiber Festival, in The Dalles, Oregon. It’s one I’ve never been to and I’m interested to explore it. There are some great teachers there. Friday afternoon, I’m taking the Knit Smart class taught by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee

Friday, from 4pm-7pm, I’ll be participating in a book signing with all the luminaries teaching at the festival.

Saturday, I’ll demo weaving overshot on a rigid heddle loom from 11:00-11:45, near the registration desk.

Linda Gettman, one of my former students, is teaching rigid-heddle classes at the festival . I’m so proud of her! If I teach someone to weave, and they go on to teach others, does that make me a weaving grandma?

And yes, today’s 30 minutes of novel writing are done!

Reviewing Page Proofs for Inventive Weaving

This summer, I spent time in Seattle coffee houses and libraries going through the page proofs of my forthcoming book: Inventive Weaving.

Editing page proofs

This is the step in the publishing process where all of the photos and text are laid out as they will be in the finished book, and the author gets to go through and catch any little errors that have crept into the manuscript.

It’s an exciting time, the first time you see your book in print. I held by breath as I first opened the big envelope from the publisher. The team at Storey did a wonderful job with the layout, coming out with some innovations I’d never seen before, like running swatches of the fabrics along the outside edges of the pages to make the book easier to scan.

Page proofs for Inventive Weaving

The photos of the projects and stacks of fabrics were gorgeous. Seeing the page proofs is the first time you think to yourself: “This book is really going to happen.”

It’s also a lot of work. As the author, you have to go through the book word-by-word and image-by-image, scanning for errors, no matter how small. This is the last chance you’ll have to fix them.

After many long hours of review, I mailed a PDF of my changes to Gwen, my editor. After Storey incorporated my fixes, I took another look. I’ve published books before, I know that no matter how careful you are, no matter how many times you review the copy, some errors will slip through.

But right now, I don’t see them.