As some of you know (mostly the Canadians, admittedly) it is hard for yours truly to do the tour thing in Canada. I want to do it, I love to do it, it’s easier to do it…BUT…. It’s a very big place, and for reasons that are pretty complex (my publisher is American, I am Canadian, there is a complicated bit of border business in between) the US publisher shouldn’t be the ones booking stuff in Canada. The Canadian distributor is responsible for events here, and for reasons that are similarly complex (bigger country, more kilometres to cover, 1/10th the population, fewer cities to stop in and the fact that they only make a small portion of the profit – a hint is the difference between the Canadian and American prices on the back of all books) it doesn’t make a lot of sense (no matter how much I want them to…) for them to behave and spend money the way the US publisher does.
Understanding all this (or not understanding it, but coming to realize that “cost -efficiency” is everything in business, and while I think of this as knitting, they think of it as business) there have been only as many Canadian dates as they can manage. I did Vancouver, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Montreal, Ottawa and Kingston…and more Canadian stuff is coming up, as fast as everyone can sort out all the complicated stuff. I decided though, that while everyone was doing the math, that there had to be an event here, at home in Toronto (considering that I live here- it’s not like travel was an issue) and started trying to figure out how to give local Canadians knitters the same chance to gather in an alarming herd of knitterliness that our friends to the south get.
Enter the esteemed Rachel H. the fountain from which all goodness springs. (Ok. Not all goodness, but a whole darned lot of it.) Rachel decided, since she had to go to Ann Arbor for a big knitting party – and since she would really, really like to go to another one, that it was in her own best interest to help me get it together. Since it is pretty much impossible to book anything with a bookstore without a publicist, Rachel decided she would marshal her considerable professional abilities and intellect, and become my personal publicist for the purposes of said event. I was grateful, but worried.
Rachel H. has some mad skills, but she knows not what it is like to try and convince a bookstore that you need chairs. Marketing an – well, marketing anything is easier than selling a bookstore on a “knitting event” but I gave her my blessing and she set off.
After a string of phone calls, emails and persuasion of various sorts, Rachel H. has managed to convince an events guy that if he builds it…we will come. I won’t tell you what she had to say to him about the sub-culture of knitting that runs fiercely through Canada, (nothing dirty) but I assure you, there is nothing I would enjoy more than shocking the daylights out of this store that is worried that a Knitting Event can’t pull enough people for it to be worth their time. (I forgive them everything, even the suggestion – when we asked for a downtown location with space, easy TTC and parking, that we might be happier in a “suburban” location. They just don’t know. We will show them. The scope and diversity of the knitting bookshelf at Indigo should be forever improved by this representation of knitting might.)
Your mission, my fellow Canadians (and any American Comrades who would like to aid in the revolution), should you choose to accept it:
Indigo at Bay & Bloor
(That’s the Manulife Centre)
Friday May 25th
It’s free, as always. Suggestions for a big honking afterparty location gratefully accepted. (It is Canada on a Friday night after all…there must be beer, or our National reputation will be shattered and the Drunken Knitters Club will be devastated.) The Hat lady for Toronto will be, well…me, and I’ll be laying your knitty love on StreetKnit.
Hope you can come, and I hope they have enough chairs.
All hail the mighty Rachel and the Indigo guy who decided to take a shot.
PS. If you were thinking about going to the Webs event (you’ve got to know people are doing it right when there is both associated charity events AND a cash bar) but were worried about space, never fear. The Webs people have your back and have moved the event to The Calvin Theatre. I think the is space for hundreds more knitters, (This threatens to be a very scary event – to say the least. Hundreds of knitters with a cash bar? Be afraid.) but they would still like you to register. I am trying hard not to interpret this move to a larger space as pressure, while being simultaneously giddy about that many knitters in one place.)
PPS. Amy is launching her book tonight at Lettuce Knit. Always a good party. If I can stop hacking up a lung long enough to be there…I will be. I do feel a little better. Though I did have to switch to a nice simple sock for knitting.
Cold meds and cables DO NOT mix.