Thursday, May 17, 2007

No, really...

The photos are just for entertainment--(yes, that is an alpaca from New England, with a part of his neighbor in the photo. Oops, they moved while I was shooting this.)

So, I see or email people, and I tell them about what's going on with this book thing. Well,I get a wide range of responses. It's sometimes genuine pleasure, support and excitement--that's most of the knitting and spinning folks. I'm grateful for that support and excitement, it's buoying me up. I've also had strange looks from people who say, "WHAT are you writing about?" (psst, they don't know about the 50 million knitters in N. America.) Also, I'm very familiar with the green monster; I know some of it is jealousy. That's ok. As long as we can all be polite, well, hey, I've been outrageously jealous of other writers, so who am I to comment?

Part of me is barely treading water, unable to stop. As of today, I'll have the "deal" part of this thing for two weeks. Yup, that's all. Two festivals. Two weeks.
I'm madly trying to set up the book's projects, and burning up the keyboard, communicating with people. I take "breaks" (hah!) and email with friends. I (mostly) remember to eat. Since the professor is away this week, I even remembered to take out the recycling and trash.

(Note: this is a Tunis sheep, I wrote an article about them here but I don't think I'd ever recognized one until I saw it at the NH festival.)

I'm trying to keep up with everything as the goal posts shift (along with travelling to write about a lot of festivals, and 25 projects, apparently writing a book is not like writing the two theses I wrote for college and grad school, there are more style rules than the Cornell and UNC universities theses' requirements...and I have an editor, too!! who knew about editors in grad school?)

Anyway, in the last 24 hours, I've hit a level of complete blood boiling anxiety. Perhaps it's because I want to treat everyone I've asked to contribute honorably, but I don't have the budget, or the information to do that right. I don't know how "we" are going to hit all the deadlines. Or maybe it's because yesterday, I got a call about a hotel reservation and I wasn't sure if they were talking about Denver or Sedalia, MO. (really.) I'd lost track of all the places I'm travelling.

I'm not asking for anyone to feel sorry for me. I've heard that already and it bothered me some--"I can't say I feel sorry for ya!" In thinking about it, I've worked very hard for months to make all this come together, and it's taken years to lay the ground work. It's ok to be happy, busy and be completely scared and stressed by it. It's work. I enjoy it, I'm glad that this is what I do for a living, but no, going to every festival is not like vacation...and truthfully, it's not much of a far, all the expenses?-- are on the credit card. Yup. I'm footing this bill, and my grass needs to be cut and the dustbunnies are taking over the house, and I don't know when I'll do that either. Moments at each festival are fabulous. Being on your feet two days in a row from 7 AM until 4 or 5 and talking nonstop at fairgrounds? Not always so fabulous, but I'm ambitious about this and I want to succeed.

In fact, I found out that an article that the professor and I wrote has been accepted for publication in a book, so it's all good news lately. No really, it's all fine, I keep telling myself. Some stress is supposed to be good stress.

I made jam today. I removed myself from the computer for an hour and a half, and had strawberry flavored fun. Taking a break from this work thing was such a relief, I can't tell you. If you want the best jam, you got to make your own...Then, in the mail, I got one of the fleeces I sent off for processing on April 30th. It is clean, lofty, chocolatey roving. It reminded me again why I love all this stuff. Now, I'm off to "relax" and work on a design for the book in front of the TV until the dogs and I fall asleep. No...really. There's no time for spinning tonight, but I might just bury myself in some roving for fun.


Blogger Peggy said...

Adorable animals, yummy looking jam, and you are right, you haven't tasted jam, preserves, or jelly until you've made some homemade. Glad things are going well and moving right along!!!! How exciting!!!!

May 17, 2007 at 7:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm just now catching up after my own trip to NH and a long backlog of blog reading. Congratulations on the book deal, it sounds like a wonderful concept (perhaps I'm a little biased?), and I look forward to seeing it.

May 17, 2007 at 9:44 PM  
Blogger Romi said...

Breathe in. Breathe out. Walk around. Pat the doggies. Enjoy it. *g*


May 17, 2007 at 10:15 PM  
Blogger sarah said...

Just think how much easier thesis-writing would have been with an editor helping! I daresay it will get more hectic yet - from reading other blogs it sounds as though the last bit of the marathon is run uphill with a hungry leopard in hot pursuit - but you will get it finished and it will be wonderful.

May 18, 2007 at 10:00 AM  
Blogger Cathy said...

You are definitely up for the challenge. You have a cheerleading section. With flash cards "GO Joanne! Yea!!"

May 18, 2007 at 10:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a jam question...I love to make jam, but I have never mastered strawberry. The pulp always floats to the top. Have you discovered the holy grail of strawberry jam-making? Do share! (I love to throw in a few leaves of fresh tarragon to the strawberry...sigh!)

May 21, 2007 at 12:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feel as though I missed some big news somewhere along the line. I know you're working on your book, but I missed the message about your festival-going. If you get a chance, would you recap what you hope to accomplish at all those festivals?

Meantime, glad you're still enjoying your homemade food. Strawberries here are scarce due to weird spring weather, and I envy you your jam. Hang in there!

May 22, 2007 at 10:09 PM  
Blogger Debbi (and Bob) Brown said...

Pretty Tunis sheep photo. I tried the link to your article and received an error. I'd love to read it. We love the Tunis sheep breed!

Debbi Brown
Unicorner Farm

May 28, 2007 at 7:53 AM  

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