Friday, October 29, 2010

Book Photoshoot

Yesterday was photo shoot day.  Above are photographer, Christine in red, and my book's editor, Kelly in black.  All the photography for the book is already done by Christine and her team. Kelly was able to show me some of the early photos for the book!  They are great, clean and crisp and modern.  Kelly and Christine took me to a local park, (the fact that the publisher's offices are so near my home is a convenient twist!).  Yesterday we were taking the "head shot" for the book's jacket. I can't wait for you to see more photos of the content of the book. 

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Fiction and non-fiction

Insatiable (audio) by Meg Cabot
Yes, another Vampire Book, but a lighter hearted one. At least the actor who read the book seemed to have a wry sense of humor about the whole thing. It was average, the same plot as always, Average to beautiful young human female courted by dashing, mysterious man who turns out to be a vampire.  At least the ending was a little different than the average vampire book, and for that I was glad.

Dark Lover by J.R. Ward
Yes, another Vampire Book.  Much darker and more mature than Meg Cabot's book.  This one is a guilty pleasure.  It's not for the more conservative reader.  It's the first book of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, which is an elite group of vampire warriors who protect 'civilian' vampires from a small group of supernatural 'humans' who try to hunt them. Violence and graphic romance abound.

Shameless (audio) by Karen Robards
Finally, not a vampire book. The first book in the Banning sisters trilogy.  It's a a period romance, if I remember correctly... vaguely.  I remember the heroine was strong though, and not a shrinking violet, which is nice.

The Forest for the Trees by Betsey Lerner
This non-fiction book was written by Betsey Lerner, a literary agent/editor.  She writes about her experiences with authors, what is typical and what is not.  What an author can expect from an agent and editor. I found this to be a pretty easy read.  I did skim parts.  I found the discussion about authors' neuroses and eccentricities to be both entertaining and ironic. 

The Strangest Secret by Earl Nightingale
A short, read it in an evening, non-fiction motivation book.  Nightingale talks about making a plan for success and the power of our thoughts to create our future.  One of the earliest books of it's kind, first published in the 1950s.

Black Hills by Nora Roberts (audio) I really enjoyed this one.  Set in the Black Hills of South Dakota, it was nice to read about a location that's rarely written about.  A young woman establishes a wildlife refuge and finds there are opponents to her mission.  With the help of a childhood friend, they work to solve mysteries and murders that begin to surround the refuge.

Shattered by Karen Robards (audio) The whole way through I felt like I had read this book before.  It wasn't terribly surprising.  A socialite lawyer returns to her home in Kentucky to be with her terminally ill mother.  Stumbling across a 'cold case' that has odd coincidences to her own life, as the lawyer seeks to find answers, odd 'accidents' begin to plague her and her mother. Luckily, her childhood friend, who is quite handsome, if from the wrong side of the tracks, happens to be the District Attorney, and her boss.  You can guess how it all works out.

Fired Up by Jayne Ann Krentz
The first book of the Dreamlight series, I won't be reading the others.  I chose the book because I have read and enjoyed other books by Jayne Ann Krentz/Jayne Castle/Amanda Quick, all the same author.  This book was abstract and full of imaginative, if complicated magic and psychic phenomena.  I found the plot too complicated.  Complicated isn't bad as long as it is interesting, this wasn't terribly compelling.  I finished the book out of a sense of wanting the author to redeem herself, but really, it was just a blip on her otherwise entertaining list of books.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Give me your best Caption!

"La la la, I can't hear you!"
"If I can't see it, it didn't happen"

Back to stitching.  On the hook today... a variety of colors I wouldn't have immediately chosen myself, but now I think it looks really, really great.  Who would have thought? Well, the editor did. :) A good editor makes my work look even better.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Sneak Peek

Here's a sneak peek of something that was still on the blocking board! 

It's going to be a crazy busy week. This week, on my hook is Caron Simply Soft yarn.  I'll be watching some movies and listening to audio books and in general, crocheting with focus!  How do you focus when you need to get some serious work done?

Friday, October 22, 2010

What's inspiring my next project?

Lots of color.  I subscribe to a few fashion magazines.  Do I ever plan on buying an original Armani or BCBG outfit or Prada shoes? Nope.  The only thing I have ever purchased after seeing it in a fashion magazine was probably a cosmetic seen in an advertisement.

Often the advertisements is what takes my notice in the fashion magazines. Are there even any articles in them? LOL. Yes, I know there are a few articles sprinkled in amongst the advertisements.

The marketing geniuses behind all the advertisements, though, have likely done a little bit of homework about trends. I like to leaf through the magazines and see if I can spot any themes, especially themes that I like.  Now, there certainly are hundreds of colors shown in the magazines but look at the gorgeous colors I found in the latest few issues from more than one magazine.  Teal blue/green.  I also spotted another color theme, but it didn't interest me as much as the teal.

After pulling these images, I whipped up two swatches and laid them on top of the color collage and photographed the assemblage to keep and jog my memory for future work.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Making Progress

 Today I am attempting to finish of 3 unfinished projects.  If I can do it, oh what a great day it will be!  Here are a few more photos (the last I'm going to share, I promise) of our Florida trip.  Above, good old miniature golf!
 The family at Sea World.
 Arr, arr, arr... the sea lions at Sea World. 
And the gorgeous fall colors of the Tennessee mountains out the windshield on the way home.  Just beautiful.

If I'm going to attempt 3 UFOs today can I encourage you to get out 1 of yours and spend a few minutes on it? Let's all Go Crochet!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


We went to a pumpkin carving party this past weekend. Above are the pumpkins our family did.  Tom did the Mickey free-hand in honor of our recent trip to Disney.  The other one is hard to see, it's a very complicated Igor holding a skull on a tray from a template from a pattern book.  That's the one Chief had his heart set on.  

Has anyone done a yarn/knitting themed pumpkin? How interesting (but not scary) would that be?

Don't forget your Tunisian "Patina" Scarves!  How's your progress coming along? Don't abandon the project, just another push if you can get it done by the end of October it would be great.

Some of our friends on Ravelry are talking about a new CAL.  I'm thinking it would be around the 1st of the year.  What kind of item would you want to CAL? 

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

knitting in the dirt

I was trying to knit at Chief's soccer game the other day... look at the nice, lush grass they had to play on... We are in about an 8" deficit of rain and it's really getting bad. 

The very basic knit scarf is just because I had an overwhelming desire to knit something the other day.  I'm using Claudia Handpaints.  I can't remember the variety by it is 100% Merino, dk weight.  It's lovely and bright. 

Monday, October 18, 2010


Look at the photo I just found!  Look closely at Chief.

Catching up

 My younger step-sister, Amy, got married in Orlando last week.  Poor us, we had to go.  We had skipped a summer vacation so that we could turn Amy and Kris' wedding into our family vacation.  Above, I had to get a family photo as it is so rare for all of use to be polished up at the same time.  I realized it was the first time my little guy had worn a shirt that required ironing. :)  Chickee had a gorgeous brown dress that looked so lovely with her brown eyes and blond hair.
 The wedding was literally 5 minutes from Disney.  Tom and I figured it would be cruel to drive the kids all the way to Orlando, see Disney from the road and not visit.  Here are a few photos from the Magic Kingdom.
 Chickee had fun driving the cars in Tomorrowland.
This giant Mickey Jack-o-lantern was the inspiration for one of our family jack-o-lanterns.  I'll share photos soon.

As far as crochet I made good progress on a blanket all the way to Orlando, but then all progress stopped as we were involved in fun.  Today, I'm desperately hoping to make some serious progress and get back into a productive rhythm. 

Friday, October 15, 2010

Tara's Tunisian Scarf

Interweave Crochet's new Accessories Issue!

I really, really loved this yarn.  It's Lorna's Laces Pearl.  It's another simple, fun, great Tunisian pattern.  If you enjoyed the Tunisian Lace Ascot or the Patina scarf, you're going to like this one too!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Carolyn Cabled Purse

We're back!  We were away at a family wedding so we turned it into a family vacation.  More on that later.  First, though, here's a little purse I made for the Interweave Crochet's new Accessories Issue.  Poke around in the preview and see if you can find another little Tunisian something of mine... if you can't find it, I'll tell you about it tomorrow!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Ammonite Scarf-close up

Sometimes I take photos while I'm making a project.  I want to have them for later reference. I take them to help explain tricky parts.  Here's a detail shot of how the motifs join together in the Ammonite Scarf which was recently published in Inside Crochet, Issue 10. A foundation sc is made, the stitches are worked across the length, then instead of turning to the back, the right side continues to face up and you rotate the motif so that the next stitches are worked on the underside of the foundation row.  When subsequent motifs are joined to the first, they are joined during the underside pass. 

Monday, October 4, 2010


I just mailed my book edit!  Woohoo!  I'm so glad that yet another hurdle is passed in this journey of writing a book.  It's really getting exciting now.  It's up and available on Amazon for Pre-order, which frankly is just silly.  Amazon is willing to take your order now, but you still won't get it until May or so, it's just not ready yet!  LOL.  I guess this is just Amazon's way of gauging how popular it's going to be? I don't know.

What you can't tell by the cover and title... the Title is "Go Crochet! Afghan Design Workbook, 50 motifs, 10 projects, one of a kind results" What you can't tell from the title is that ALL 50 motifs can be mixed and matched with EVERY OTHER motif in the book.  So truly, you can find a way to configure blankets in hundreds of combinations.  There are 10 projects in the book made from the motifs and one of them... get this... one of the blankets uses ALL 50 motifs!  Ok , that's all I'm going to say on that today.

Have a good one!

Friday, October 1, 2010

CAL: Tunisian Scarf

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Patina Tunisian Scarf Crochet A-long!  It's not over yet.  You still have the chance to finish your projects.
Everyone who completed a scarf before September 30 and posted a photo either to me or on the Ravelry group, all those people's names went into a drawing.  Any of those projects, if they were pledged for donation in the 60 scarves in 60 days Challenge, Dee's Challenge, those people got their name in the drawing a second time.

The name pulled out of the drawing for September is.... Kimb0 from West Chester, Ohio!

So,  Ravelry mail or email me with your mailing address and I will send your prize out.  I'm going to give you a choice of prizes... either 2 free patterns from my Ravelry store, or a selection of 3 matching skeins of Red Heart SuperSaver, or 3 matching hanks of Louet Gems. 

All the September entries... will go BACK in the hat.  Anyone who completes a Tunisian Patina Scarf by October 31, your name will be added to the hat and another drawing November 1.