Wow, it has been a heck of a month so far. Oscar and I have been fighting off the flu since September, and only this week do we approach normal. Thank goodness.
I have been knitting, of course. I finished a shawl designed with yarn Knit Picks sent me, and it is blocking quietly in the studio. Oscar did a heck of a job in there so far, to the point where there was enough floor space for me to lay out my shawl, and close the door to keep it kitty-safe.
There is enough yarn left from the shawl for me to also design a cowl. I think I've settled on a stitch pattern, but it is one that will be challenging to convert to 'in-the-round' construction. This makes it more fun for me. :-}
I am testing a pattern for a platypus hot bottle cozy. It is a somewhat intricate knit, but I am a bit more than half done. I am test knitting it in exchange for a reference so that I might get further work as a tech editor of knitting patterns via Ravelry. Lynn has also said she will give me a reference, so that's good.
I am also having a great time writing a pattern for fingerless mitts, to be published in the Winter issue of a brand new online magazine, out of Tokyo. This means the pattern will be translated into Japanese, which thrills me :-} I lived there during the 1980s, so I am intrigued by this assignment. Plus I will be paid for the pattern, which is way cool :-} I have enjoyed working with Cassie, so I may contiue to submit to her magazine, just because I like her, and I like the idea of being connected to Japan through my knitting. Designs for homespun yarn are also welcome, which gives me another great reason to spin more! That pattern is due November 7th, but I hope to have it finished next week.
There are two submissions I wish to make by November 1st. One is to a yarn company, the other to a magazine. Both require email submissions, which means drawing a schematic of my pattern, and then scanning a knitted swatch in my preferred yarn. Then I need to write a cover sheet explaining why the pattern is perfect for them.
I have one 'swatch' finished (It's actually the scarfy-shawl I made for myself this winter) and have almost decided on which pattern idea from my file will suit for the other.
If I only get one done, it will be enough. I lost quite a bit of time being sick this month already.
I am cobbling together a process of organization for this new aspect of my designing. I want to keep a card with all the details (date of submission, to whom, and result) for easy reference, and also a file containing the swatch and schematic. If one place turns me down, I can easily then try another. I will also keep a computer record, of course, with the scanned swatch image. I want to be certain to stagger my submissions so that the due dates for the actual knitted objects are not too close together. Because a magazine will often change the yarn from what I envisioned, it is not sensible to knit the object before submitting the idea.
I took a class at the beginning of the month from Mary Beth Temple which taught me a LOT about submitting to magazines, yarn companies, etc. On October 20th, I will be taking another class from her, this time on self-publishing my designs. I already self-publish, but I am sure there is more to learn. I want to have a website up and running in January 2010, and I think this class will really help firm up my ideas for that, too. Thanks again to Liz for such a great birthday present!
(image is a reworked photo taken several years ago, up North)