love, Cher

I wonder exactly how long I can get away with posting pictures of pathetic progress on a small sock?


Yeah. Today is probably it. Sorry.

I would have written something interesting about …. something, maybe even knitting (I screwed up another sock. One I wasn’t showing you. It’s terrible. It’s knit like I’ve never even SEEN a heel and is the best evidence possible that I don’t have the brain for anything right now) and instead I went to Thomas Allen (the Canadian Distributor of the book) and signed books for Tuesday:


Seriously. HOW LONG IS MY NAME? (And doesn’t that look like too many books? I think so.) That’s three and a half hours of signing my name. My HYPHENATED NAME. What was I thinking when I put a hyphen in my name? I should have started this whole thing with something shorter. Like “Steph” or “Cher”

(PS. If you’re planning to come to the pub afterwards, could you put a shout out in the comments? Rachel’s trying to get a head count so we don’t crush them.)

195 thoughts on “love, Cher

  1. Wish I could say I was coming to the pub, but it’s a bit of a drive. You know, I’ve tolerated the sketchy political leadership, crappy economy and lack of healthcare availability – but it’s an event like this that really makes me wish I were a Canadian, eh? I can see the taking of wacky sock pictures becoming a national event.

  2. At least your name isn’t like my usually hyphenated name.
    Mary Cruickshank-Peed
    I sure wish I could come to the pub afterwards, I could use a pub-and-knitting night. Instead I’ll have to join you in my imagination…

  3. Stephanie, please do not be so hard on yourself. Somedays are so crazy around here that I don’t get any knitting done either and I am not also trying to finish up one book while I do the publicity for another. We all understand! By the way, I almost bought a ticket to be with you all in TO next Tuesday – it sounds like it is going to be a blast! I’ll be thinking of you (enviously) from out here in Winnipeg.

  4. A nice glass of wine will probably help the cramp in your hand after signing that many books. However, you might want to ask your parents what they were thinking when they gave you long first name. You are one of the few people I know with a first name longer than my own. Oh, my last name, not hyphenated, but I use both maiden and married, slightly longer than yours. But, I don’t autograph books, or write in as entertaining a fashion.

  5. Its ok, Steph…….. time to exercise the hand……stretch fingers, one, two, one, two, one, two…… now curl them, take a swig of beer….. and repeat till you’re nice and relaxed. How’s that for a nurse’s Rx?
    A Twisted Knitster………

  6. Hmm, when I went to post a comment it disappeared. I wonder if it will come back? Anyway, the sock is lovely, and so is the pile of books. Hitting POST with fingers crossed…

  7. Definitely have a glass of wine, a bit of chocolate, and try to relax. And don’t worry about the sock pictures (the fact that it happens to be progressing slowly this time is encouraging to those of us who are new to knitting socks – and knitting in general – and worry that we’ll never be able to get near your sock-making pace). And please don’t stop posting sock progress pictures (they’re often inspiring for some of us newbies).

  8. Hi Stephanie. Just saw the write-up in The Villager. The sweater looks fantastic on you I’m hoping to see you at the launch Tuesday but having a 10-yr old in tow -albeit a Yarn Harlot fan-complicates things. Have a blast!

  9. I would have loved to see the messed up sock. I think seeing your mistakes and stuff gives comfort to me, to see that even amazing knitters such as yourself have a major foul-up sometimes. Everybody knows you’re a great knitter, so there’s no mystery about that. But if you’re not a famous great knitter and the sock goes wacko, it’s easier to say, “I suck at this. Who am I kidding?” Instead I could say, “Oh but even Stephanie Pearl-McPhee has moments when she majorly screws up her socks sometimes…” You see where I’m going here.

  10. quinine (tonic) water is good for dealing with hand/foot cramps (not the other kind, unfortunately).
    quinine used to be prescribed in larger doses for that purpose, but an o.d. can cause eye damage, so most docs won’t write rx for it now.
    however, tonic water remains available. and if vodka or gin is added, you quit caring about the crappy taste fairly soon.
    8- )

  11. I went out this afternoon on a hunting trip and found your book “in the wild”. I captured it (at the checkout), and this evening I devoured it (I just finished reading it.) Great fun! I look forward to seeing you in Chicagoland soon.

  12. Goodness, that is one nicely striped sock. I’ll see about getting some of this yarn…

  13. I would be totally fine with a book signed by “Steph.” Clearly, that’s you. My goodness, that’s a lot of writing (the signing bit) after a lot of writing (the book bit). I’d be knitting plain squares by now if I were in your situation, and I’d probably be messing those up. Take it easy, ‘kay? πŸ™‚

  14. Thatzallata books. I remember signing several travelers checks once and screwing up my signature, and my name’s not as long as yours. The sock is nice! I can’t come to the pub afterwards but I wish I could so thoughts will be with you…

  15. All respect to Cher, and though fine actresses and strong women both, Uma knits and has a shorter name.
    Sign them SPM and we’ll think “socks per month”, still driving “vast distances, enduring many hardships” to hear you speak. If you know that movie in quotes, I’ll bring you a case of Wisconsin’s (in my opinion) finest when friends and I drive to see you in Madison. We’ll bring cheese curds, and if you’d like, a (mini)cheesecake.

  16. Richard Petty, the race car driver, once said that he learned how to sign his flowery signature by using his whole arm instead of just moving his fingers. He said that way he could sign for hours without getting hand cramps.
    Or sign like Amy Carter used to when her Dad was President – she started out with her full name, then started just signing her first name, and eventually just wrote a big “A”.
    Eagerly anticipating Madison. Wishing I could win an all-expenses-paid trip to Toronto. Hope it’s a blast!!

  17. Whee! My book is in the mail (according to Amazon). Though it’s not signed with your wonderfully hyphenated name. Maybe when you hit Portland and 3rd time is a charm for me (missed the last two times you were here).

  18. Yet another example, despite your desire to be perceived as a Godless Heathen Knitter, of your Protestant work ethic — NO author writes his/her full name. Is this an attempt to perpetrate a certain formal distance? (Bet you sign Rachel H, Denny & Ken’s books “Steph.”) Trying to give everyone their full ink-rights?
    Reprioritize — Pat Conroy’s contract specifies he has to have a masseuse on hand and a signing-break once an hour for a hand-massage. Go thou and do likewise.

  19. I went to my nearest bookstore, closer than the nearest yarn store. They didn’t have a copy of your book, seeing so many copies in one place is very disappointing. They could have at least had one?
    We aren’t that far from T.O.

  20. Hi, I would love to meet you in the pub. Lots of good pubs in Annapolis, MD. I couldn’t wait to get your book, so I went to my local Barnes and Noble and made them drag it out of the back room (chastizing them for not already having it on the shelves!) It is WONDERFUL!! and funny and sweet. I envy you your talent in writing and knitting!! Hope to be there in Annapolis on April 7th! Good luck with the signing and the tour.

  21. Rachel – me plus 3 others for the pub please. Trying to indoctrinate a few pals to the ways of The Harlot but I don’t think they’ll be up to blog comments yet. And Steph – slow progress and mistakes are reassuring to us all.

  22. Back when I was married, my last name consisted of both of our names (but no hyphen) — all six syllables! If I needed to sign my name over and over again, such as with traveler’s cheques, I would forget how to spell it after the first half-dozen or so.
    Congratulations on the book! I’m waiting to track down a copy here in Massachusetts.

  23. I am definitely in for the pub!
    Steph, I seem to recall that you said you might be able to personalize a book at the pub- is that still a possibility? I have a special request for a friend here in Kingston.

  24. Signing books is important, but don’t hurt yourself. It’s not worth that. You want to be able to knit. πŸ™‚

  25. I know there will be way more books sold than that pile. :O) The Blog loves ya! My copy will be on its way here soon, and then I’ll make a cuppa tea and have a good read. It will make my day. Thanks, Stephanie.

  26. Perhaps if you keep posting progress pics of your sock you’ll end up with a flip book animating it’s creation?

  27. I just got a notice from Amazon, too. Yippee!
    Can’t make it on April 1, but will try to engage in some inexplicable (and bloggable) knitter behavior on this side of the lake.

  28. I’m not 100% sure if I’ll show up at the pub…it’s after my library shift, so i might just go home, but I’d love to meet some of the people off ravelry. Put me down as a maybe…

  29. Can we pub in Seattle? Hummm,no, we probably would be more inclined to coffee shop it here.

  30. SO, wish I could come. Broke my ankle…driving ankle, couple of weeks ago, damaged tendons/ligaments…out of commission for traveling very far for a bit. Was suppose to go to Kniterary in Whitby to a Fiona Ellis talk/class on Sat that I have been looking forward to since last November. Bummer, sigh…

  31. I’ll definitely be there for the pub – barring any TTC work action.
    (I love that it’s a hardcover!)

  32. I love the book–it may be my favorite. It is in NY and I could not wait until Wednesday (to be fair, I am not sure I will be able to get off from work.) First Barnes and Noble showed it in the computer on Wednesday night but they couldnt find it in the store. Thursday morning I was luckier at another branch. Just finished it-but want to go back and reread it.
    Made me admit to myself that despite several gauge swatches for a new sweater–the garment is growing in size and clearly I need to decide whether to start over, or at least how to modify the pattern since what i have knitted so far probably is usable. So there has been a brief lifting of denial.

  33. Okay, you think that picture shows pathetic progress on a small sock. I’ve had a slightly larger sock on the needles for about ten days, I’m not doing a final edit on one book, or getting ready to launch another book, and I’m not even to the heel. I think you’ve got a perception problem, Miz Harlot. Most of us don’t knit that fast or that well. I’d be thrilled to be that far on a sock in, what, three days? It’s very pretty. Love the color. Love the stack of books. Wish one was for me but I live too far away.

  34. Congrats on finishing some of the signing, I can’t imagine the writer’s cramp and yet I hope you have to sign many more, including mine.
    And seeing a slow sock is an encouraging sight for those of us who have slow, aggravating socks as well. BTW I like your hyphenated name, it’s so…cashmere.

  35. I would love to ‘shout out’ that I would be at the pub, but that would only be wishful thinking. Instead, I will be amazed at the number of books you signed…3 hours, a huge quantity of books…how many books per minute? Amazing!

  36. I’m willing to look at more basic sock photos, but I’ve done multiple postings of a few inches progress on a basic stockinette-with-seed-stitch-edges scarf lately, so I may not be the best reference on that.

  37. Crush, crush, crush their heads!
    (I do miss Kids in the Hall!)
    Wish I could be at the pub, but since I’m on the other side of the country and all, maybe not!…However, I’m thinking I might have to head to my own local watering hole, knitting in hand, and have a pint on your behalf anyway. Definitely think I should freak some of the downtown Vancouverites with public sock photo-bloggin’ that day. Mwah hah hah hah!

  38. My signature has totally degenerated in the years I’ve had my job because I have to sign my name so many times. It’s got a few recognizable letters, but it’s basically a scrawl. But hey, my hand made the scrawl, so it’s my legal signature. That’s all that counts. I know some people whose signatures are more…abstract, shall we say?, than mine. No need to make individual letters. Life’s too short to spend several seconds per signature. It takes me about 1.5 seconds to sign my name, I think. It doesn’t matter if nobody can read it. If someone can’t read it, they’re less likely to be able to forge it.
    Nice sock. (Don’t you dare refer to that as pathetic progress. If that’s pathetic progress, then my knitting is slug-like, Ms. Lightning Bolt Knitter.)

  39. I hyphenated my name too. I had a good reason for this at the time, but some days when I have to sign my name alot I feel like I shot myself in the foot by keeping the two last names.

  40. I have a hyphenated name too and it is a real PIA. You could sign the books “Yarn Harlot”, everyone would know it is you and you’d save time because it is way shorter than the hyphenated name. Just a thought.

  41. I went to a book-signing once when the author had a serious hand cramp, so he put his fingerprint on the page instead. You might think about it….

  42. I plan to be at the pub. After a day of taking pix of my little sock, I’ll need some brew!

  43. I think you should sign some ‘Steph’ – ‘Cher’ might not fly. But really, they don’t have to be all the same. In fact, whatever is scarce becomes more valuable. Whomever makes it to the grand kick-off should get a bit of a reward (and I say that knowing there is no way I’ll be heading up over the border) – the Harlot’s full name. I can sympathize, my whole name is 20 letters, no hyphen.

  44. I had a hyphenated name not too long ago. Add the nine letters in Stephanie, and it’s a lot to sign! You go girl! Wish I could be at the pub, but you aren’t even coming into California this time ’round. Sigh…. πŸ™ April 1st is my son’s 17th birthday, so we’ll be celebrating too! Have a blast for all of us!!

  45. There are no Autograph Police. These are not bank documents. And unless you’re worried your mother might criticize your penmanship and/or professionalism, I’d go with “Steph”.
    If it makes you feel better, use a big fancy “S”.

  46. I sign so many documents during the day i’ve been reduced to just my initials!! Can’t wait to see you in Seattle in April. I’m looking forward to buying the book!!!

  47. You put the hyphen there? You mean, your Mom didn’t give you that name?
    I finally found the book today…at Barnes and Noble. Started it tonight. I keep smiling and chuckling while nodding my head affirmatively. Yep, so far, it’s all true. πŸ˜‰

  48. Hey, I pre-ordered it from Amazon too – where’s MY notice that’s it’s on the way?!

  49. Went to Barnes and Noble today and couldn’t find it. Finally asked, followed the nice lady to the knitting section (I looked there…), then to the front where it was supposed to be. She checked again and retrieved it fresh from the back. Going to curl up with it now. Oh, the rest are in their proper place in the front of the store.

  50. My sister and I will be pubbing it up afterwards. So that makes it plus 2… I’m totally stoked.

  51. hehe, looks like about 500 books! seems like it’s going to be a helluva party! congrats on getting the book out! πŸ˜€

  52. Count me in for a book and the pub and I am staying with my pal Jennifer so count her in too!! (she helped me inspect the tassels on the last yarn crawl…)
    R-e-e-a-a-l-l-y looking forward to this!!
    Cheers, Barbie O.

  53. How ’bout Bubba? Take some Ibuprofen for the pain-800mg, or a snort or two of Bushmills.

  54. Dear Steph – I won’t be able to be there for the book launch (more’s the pity…) but my charming daughter will be there for both of us, with her latest sock-in-progress.
    I wanted to say Good Luck! You seem to get very nervous about these things – have a little faith that a) you’re good, and b) the audience is very nice too.

  55. Dude. That is NOT too many books. They look like piles of chocolate bars; they’re that awesome. I do feel for your hand pain though, and I’m glad you survived it.

  56. The sock is great! Hey, a lot of us get really excited about socks. πŸ˜‰ Especially that sock yarn. Lion Brand Magic Stripes is probably my favorite sock yarn- it machine washes and dries beautifully. I can’t wait to get my hands on some Sock-Ease. I’m just now trying Austermann Step and it’s fabulous! It’s much softer in my hands as I knit.
    PS: Do you use Norwegian cast-on for your ribbing?

  57. Keep the faith. You are doing great. And personally I love to see the progress you make on the sock. I love your socks. One of these fine days I will get the nerve and actually KNIT a sock. I have wool that I love to feel so I should do it with that. However, right now, I am with you in the mind is mush stage. I have my first exam on Monday on medical/surgical nursing and I’m scared out of my mind. So hang in there, we are with you! And you ROCK!!!!
    And please soak your hands and wrists in cool water before bed. And ask a nearby human for a hand massage. The cat would do it, but let’s face it, we are their staff.
    Ann in Maryland

  58. Hyphenated? Shouldn’t that be DOUBLE hyphenated?
    You did sign them all Stephanie Pearl-McPhee-Dunphy didn’t you?
    You’re going to have to go back and fix them all if you didn’t!
    Tee hee.

  59. Oh, I love the piles and piles of books! My full legal name (not even including a middle initial) is 21 letters long so I feel your pain. If I ever write a book, I’m using my short hand internet name instead (Katie Fleck).

  60. Wish I could be there! Is there any chance of sqeezing in the Bay Area? I might be forced to fly to a west coast city… I am sorry about the name thing. You just don’t think of those things when you decide on a hyphenated name. I would accept any scribble!

  61. I do hope to be at the pub afterwards, especially as now Toronto pubs will not make our socks smoky.
    (I still feel like that is a new policy somehow.)
    BTW how can I set this not to show my email address in the comments …too much spam these days ….

  62. dang… I’d be at the pub if it was just a wee bit closer (and having taken lessons from your mulit-kilometer walk for beer & tp, I won’t even attempt arriving at the pub… errr, yeah, I’m a quick study. hah πŸ™‚ ) but man… I’d sure love to.
    Are you taking a virtual head count of all of us who will be raising a pint of stout here at home in your honor? I think that those numbers would blow your mind.
    Congrats again on such a grand idea as this new book. Can’t wait to read it.

  63. Randomly and tiredly musing on shortenings/nicknames….
    But, In my head it sounded like this
    πŸ™‚ Congrats on the Premier/Release!

  64. Most authors sign their names so scribbly that it could be anything. You could do that, and make it fun for yourself. Give yourself a rap name, if you like, and sign that. Or, consider using other celebrity names. If your signature is sufficiently scribbly, no one will ever be able to tell that you signed their book as Mister T.

  65. I will admit I didn’t read all the other comments…All I have to say is, I feel your pain, but my last name has 4 more letters in it than yours. It could be worse πŸ˜‰ My first name is shorter than yours though, so I guess it evens out.

  66. Dude, just sign it Steph.
    It’s things like this that make me glad that my new married name is 7 letters, first and last, total.
    My cousins have a 16 letter last name though, and they abbreviate it to 3 letters at the most (and that’s just when they can’t get away with going with K)

  67. I went to the bookstore today to get my copy. They didn’t have them in yet. The bookstore lady didn’t seem to understand that a knitting book can be a matter of some urgency. She looked at me like I was maybe a few marbles short of a bag when I pointed out to her that it came out TODAY. I resisted the urge to pull the sock out of my purse and jab her with the pointy metal needle when she told me it would be in “soon”.

  68. What a lovely pile of books – *hardback* books – a beautiful sight! Yeah, they do go with the sock, which is looking equally lovely. And we’ll take looking at sock pictures, loused up or not, any day; or don’t you recall your post of yesterday? [g] By this point, maybe not. In fact, considering the time you posted this entry, I sincerely hope you’re blissfully asleep now, hopefully after icing your hand and getting Joe to massage it with Aspercreme or such.
    Heck, I think you could go even shorter than your initials. Howsabout “YH”? C’mon, you know most of us stand in line because we want to say hi to you… The sig is gravy. πŸ˜‰ (Ok, I’d probably get some arguments on that.) But really, while I love that I’ve got signed books, the most fun was beaming back at you foolishly. And I’ll *always* cherish that hug I got from you at Powell’s last year!

  69. I just LOVE LOVE LOVE your book! I’m not anywhere near your signings so I bought it from Barnes and Noble. I’m up late tonight (new medicine for me equals sleepless night) and I finished it. It was hysterical; I was nodding my head in agreement with you while laughing my “arse” off.
    You did a wonderful job!!! Congratulations and enjoy your tour!!

  70. Hey, don’t be so negative. I think you’re making great progress on that sock, if my usual progress is any gauge!
    And by the way, too bad you’re not signing the books for….mine should be on the way to me pretty soon!
    Great luck with the new book, I’m sure it’ll be a great success.

  71. Stephanie:
    I have asked my daughter( who lives in NY) to come to the book signing at Columbus Circle. A year ago she was just diagnosed with MS in NY and I was at the Fashion Institute keeping my head above water and seeing the release your last book. You saved my head that day with your sense of humour and me attending something so special in a huge city, so far from home.
    I just read your first blog ever- 19 people responded. Just look how things have changed!!!!
    Every day I look forward to your writing. Thank you so much.

  72. Well, I can’t come to this event, but I just bought my tickets to see you in London! We’ll be welcoming you with open arms when you get here!!

  73. You don’t need to write out your entire name! Rams is right: if Steph is good enough for your very closest and best buddies, then it is good enough for all of us, imagining that a blog relationship makes us part of your circle of very closest and best buddies.
    Love, Steph…. I want that on my bookshelf!!

  74. I think I’m getting a sympathy cramp in my hand. Thank goodness you have knitting to keep them in shape for signing!

  75. Good luck with the book launch – it all sounds like too much fun! I, unfortunately, will not be at the pub because I will be soaking up Vitamin D in Florida – but rest assured I will be searching all the book stores in the area for a copy! Have a wonderful time – you deserve it!

  76. You’ll have to start signing your books “Yarn Harlot” πŸ™‚
    I’m the same way. I have a hyphenated last name, but I only use one of them while writing!

  77. Keep on with the sock. I’m actually hoping you’ll tell us what you think about the Lion Brand yarn. I’m very excited to find something I might be able to actually buy at the local hobby store that isn’t acrylic. (I don’t have a yarn shop anywhere near me.)

  78. DON’T apologize, even for one second!! You have teenagers (which is a profession unto itself), a husband (and a marriage), a house, chores, knitting for friends, projects, and yourself (let’s not even go into spinning), a blog, a schedule of writing different things in order to make a living, a TOUR (egads!) and God knows what else (getting to use the restroom once in a while?) and you are feeling that your blog efforts are less than stellar!!?? Woman, thy name is Amazing!
    Mary E

  79. could you have a really fine
    designed stanp made for the
    books you need to pre sign
    i am in florida land of the flu
    and cipro and being asked are you ok
    when out in the store and it is warm
    so i will be nowhere to meet you
    i will have a signed check in walmart
    lane seven on the 14th bring your book

  80. I just woke up, and I’m still bleary-eyed and under-caffeinated, and so it’s hard to pay attention to things. This is naturally why the first conclusion I drew upon looking at the photo of stacks of books was: Oooh! Pallet of chocolate bars! Stephanie must be thrilled to see that!

    Yeah, so, I’m off to make coffee now. Someone should get you a really good chocolate bar, anyways. πŸ™‚
    (P.S. I too am suffering from a sock I’ve screwed up. I keep telling myself that I’ll knit through the heel before I decide if it’s destined for the frog pond or not. Because after all, I’d hate to waste all the time I put into knitting it so far, right? RIGHT?)

  81. I think that may not be enough! My friend is coming over from McMaster University in Hamilton (and bringing a knitter-to-be) for the signing, clearly demonstrating the excitement level of your fans, so I think you’ve probably got it about right. Have a BLAST (and an icepack on your hand)!

  82. Hmmm… “Love, The Harlot” would be much shorter πŸ™‚
    And I’m planning on pubbing. Very much looking forward to it!

  83. In case anyone else besides me was curious about “the write-up in The Villager,” mentioned by another commenter, you can see it at — although unfortunately without the purported picture of “the sweater.”
    Geez — 3 1/2 hours of signing? You’d think you’d be rewarded, not punished, for having written a book!

  84. That sounds like a long time to sit down and write your name. I wonder after some time if it started to look strange to you? Or did you have trouble with certain letters and they started to look funny?
    No, I’m not tired of the sock yet.

  85. I don’t much care what you show on the blog, you always manage to make it humorous and fun to read!
    And I had a momentary brain glitch when I saw a pile of signed books, but then you are working on a book, and in my mind they were one and the same!!! Then I came to myself and said, “aha, she is working on the NEXT book”. How kind of you to keep giving us more to look forward to!!!

  86. Man… thats a lot of signing…
    ps my copy arrived from Amazon— love the formaat and size— already tucked it right into my knitting bag… first thing I did was open to the pages you sneak-peeked on the blog;)
    Wonderful job, congrats!
    you can show as many pics of the sock as you need too— we’ve all been there— it’s looking quite nice— wondering how it feels….

  87. My husband, a doctor, could totally relate to you with the name signing thing. He calls it “the power of the pen”! I bet your signature is way more readable than his, though (but just as powerful!)

  88. Could you just circle your name on the inside page, and write “ME!!”?
    Seriously, can’t wait to get my hands on this book. You’re great for signing them.

  89. lol. i, dawn willess-ruthstrom, am laughing with, not at you. dawn’s shorter than stephanie, but i’ve been with mr. for 6 years now and i still have a hard time saying ruthstrom.
    as far as the signing goes, you now have your gimped up writing hand to blame for bad heels. i know i can’t write a note to the teacher without my hand cramping up. you should have ordered stickers. and put them in yourself. . . that’s personal, right??

  90. I’m hyphenated too – just starting a new job and they assigned my login id for three systems, first initial & last name. Too late for me to request they put me in as something simple like Jones I guess.
    My hand aches just thinking of you signing all those things. Ouch!

  91. Dear Rachel,
    I will be at the pub – with a finished clapotis of Laura’s handspun. We can discuss how to take her down.

  92. Actually I’m a bit more excited about the beer than about the book, how pathetic am I?? Just kidding, congratulations on the book and I’m really looking forward to reading it and seeing if what you told me about a year ago is really included in it, hee hee.

  93. My legal signature is 18 letters and a hyphen long, so, believe me, sister, I feel your pain. When I was a schoolteacher, I dreaded the end of the year when I had to sign beaucoup attendance certificates, grade sheets, letters of recommendation, club certificates, etc. Otherwise I signed my initials- S.A. R-McC. Maybe you could sign Stephanie P-McP?? Of course, there are drawbacks; my students promptly nicknamed me R-Mc (pronounced Armac). When I was pregnant, they changed it to Big Mac. Hmmm…

  94. That’s a lovely pile of NEW BOOKS, I’m deeply impressed.
    Now that it’s too late, I’ve heard it recommended that a fine-point sharpie is a good signing tool. The felt tip is the important idea, it does not resist sliding over the page. (Ha! I thought that was knowledge I could never use.)

  95. I’m guessing that all those books will sell, and then some. Hope your signing hand recovers by Tuesday. Count me and my hubby in for the pub event!

  96. I completely agree with the hyphenated last name thing. Hubby and I both hyphenated when we got married to have the same last name. He’s a doc and I’m a counsellor and we have to write/sign our names on all of our charts/files multiple times per day. Some days we wonder if our egalitarian principles are worth it.
    I’d love it if you signed your books, “Love, the Harlot.” Can’t wait to see you in Toronto. I may make it to the pub; it will depend on how my boss (read: my 9 month old baby who will be in tow) feels after the launch.

  97. Quinine in tonic water sounds good definately add vodka or gin-vodka is my choice. Sock looks gorgeous!! I declare a moratorium on beat ones self up on not completing a simple sock quicker than lightening. See you at Webs in April. Unfortunately, can’t make it to Toronto to pub it with ya!!

  98. Yep, the hyphen thing. I did it for my children (their last name – even thought they said…Why?) and now every time I write a check..your name has one more letter than mine…I wonder why…
    Your Toronto opening sounds like so much fun, I briefly considered flying up there, but I do have my tickets for your St. Paul, MN appearance. You know, there are some great pubs close to the college in St. Paul….

  99. My maiden name was Lynda Michaluk, and in all he years before I got married, not a single soul who was saying my last name for the first time ever, ever pronounced it correctly. Let alone the idiot teachers who, on the first day of school, would call me Lydia. Hello? You’re illiterate and you’re going to teach me?
    So fast forward to my wonderful husband, who said to me just before we got married, You know, you don’t have to change you name if you don’t want to, you can keep your maiden name. I looked at him like he was out of his mind. Are you kidding? I’ve been waiting YEARS to get rid of that name!
    I’m with the crowd – just write a ‘heart’ SPM or ‘heart’ YH, and we would all be so very cool with that.
    Oh, and by the way, you still have time to drop down to Tucson after Salt Lake City, and make thousands of Arizona knitting fans so, so happy.
    Best of all possible luck with your new book and the book tour!

  100. I liked the Richard Petty advice on signing without cramps. As a children’s librarian who had to sign hundreds of summer reading certificates for children with my seventeen letter name, I discovered that every clockwise motion in your signature produces cramp. If you can alter your signature to a series of counterclockwise ripples, you can go on forever.

  101. I so feel your pain with the long name thing. Its 19 letters first and last, 24 for the whole thing and no one ever says it right. Unlike you though I can look forward to getting married to someone with a short last name. πŸ™‚ I agree with everyone else, just draw a heart and sign it Steph. Its short and its not like we don’t all know who “Steph” is.
    I do wonder though after about 2 dozen does your name look like its spelled wrong to you, or am I the only one that has that issue? Now its off to hunt the wilds for my own copy of the book.

  102. It could be worse. It could something like ‘engelbert humperdinck’ born (Arnold George Dorsey). Of course, sometimes the change makes tons of sense: Mandla Kadjaly Carl Stevland (Stevie Wonder).

  103. I think if I met you, I’d rather have you purl a few stitches on my stockinette sock that I’m sure to have handy. When I forget why I have the odd stitches, I’ll have forgotten I met you and it won’t matter any more- but while I do have that sock, I can treasure it. Plus there’s an inherent pun, and I like puns. And it’s probably less time consuming than signing your name.

  104. A long signature only matters if you try to make it legible.
    I could post pathetic progress picture of my scarf for days too. I won’t since I don’t have a book excuse like you.

  105. You haven’t told us if you like the sock yarn you are using?? The sock looks great.. Take several deep breaths every once in a while to help with stress;-)

  106. Dude, that’s totally why I go by Steph. In preparation for my impending fame. Well, that and I think Stephanie’s way too girly.
    And I’m totally going to make sure that if I get married, whoever I marry has a shorter last name than mine. Practicality, people. πŸ˜‰

  107. With this adoring crowd–you could post pathetic progress pictures a good long time. Maybe the longer the funnier, hmmmm.
    Don’t they make signature stamps???
    Or I like the previous suggestion–“Harlot”

  108. I wish I could come to the pub. When are you going to come to Winnipeg?? I know, out of your hands. Sigh.

  109. I am named for my granny – Winnifred Katherine Morris – born in 1895. She probably only had to sign her name in any official way (signing letters to relatives doesn’t count and she used Kitty) about a dozen times in her 98 year life span. She signed the whole thing, all 24 letters. She could never understand why I shortened it to WKMorris and use to sacrastically call me William Kenneth.

  110. Terrible? Heck, I can’t even KNIT a sock! That is one step out of my ability zone. I’m lucky to hold two needles…

  111. I have checked Borders twice and Barnes and Noble and neither had your book (Oange County,CA). You could go with S.Pearl-McPhee.
    Love the sock, hey———–progress is progress. It’s is the process you love. Enjoy your tour. Still looking to get a chance to see you………..

  112. Love the sock and the fact that you, too, make projects you don’t like. I’d love to be there but Kansas City is a bit too far for a one day trip. Perhaps you will visit this way soon? Looking forward to downloading the book from Audible dot com soon.

  113. Dude….that’s a lot of books, and that’s only in one area. You should start using your initials.
    All I can say is do a lot of hot and cold compresses for that signer’s cramp you’re going to get.

  114. Went to Barnes and Noble last night…they told me that your book would not be released until April 28th. Seems fishy to me…will have to look somewhere else.
    Wish I could join the fun in Toronto but it is just too far from Idaho. We are however planning a road trip to Salt Lake to see you there! Do we need to give a heads up to anyone about how many are coming? Will you have your books available for purchase at the library?
    The sock looks wonderful! Looking forward to trying the new sock yarn…I’m working on one now out of the Magic Stripe. Purple colorway.
    Have a safe and wonderfully enjoyable tour. See you near the end…

  115. Went by Knitch in Atlanta today to get your book so I’ll be ready for when you hit town in a week! See ya then!

  116. Congrats on making progress on the socks, and on all those books!
    I’ve always thought the prevelence of illegible signatures is because its easier to sign and harder to forge something like looks like a scrawl, but women tend to be a little pickier about the look of our penmanship: usually, our signature hardly looks different from regular handwriting. Would you perhaps consider a new “look” signing your mark? Maybe something with a few big loops.

  117. Oh, and probably yes for the pub on Tuesday. (Can’t remember 2 things at once any more!)

  118. I plan to be there!!
    You’ve already signed three of my books and I’m hoping you’ll sign #4 while I pick up #5!
    TTC going to cooperate? I’m getting my sock ready for the trip!
    Remember to step back and breath; so that you can enjoy all the wonderful moments that this launch will bring you. :o)

  119. Hyphenated names of the world, unite!
    I’m Karin Maag-Tanchak.
    Hey, at least you’re not signing ‘Stephanie Pearl (not Purl) – McPhee’ any more!
    And another Hey! You were doing what a year ago? Renovating an entire bedroom and such?
    Also: Hey! You could be unemployed…:)
    PS: nice sock.

  120. That looks like about the same amount of your books that I put out on our store shelves just yesterday — 5 cases – think there are 24 per case!
    The look great and I was laughing in bed last night reading my copy — luckily my hubby was in another room doing the taxes

  121. By my estimation that is about 500 books…three and one-half hours….hmmmm…that’s about 2.4 per minute. That’s a pretty good speed! Pick it up, open to the right spot, sign the complete name, close book, place on finished pile, smile at the people there who tell you they are glad they don’t have to sign all those books, pick up another and on and on. Gads, it sounds like hiking to the store was an easy trip compared to this one.
    Relax, sniff a skein of some lovely vintage wool, remember all the witty things you wrote, feel clever again, dream of all the praise you will receive in the comments today and just be damned glad you didn’t have to sign the entire print run!!

  122. I would love to have a picture like that of a stack of my books somewhere. I can only imagine the sense of accomplishment at seeing those. (Although, I’m sure it must feel much more like it once those are all signed.)

  123. You know, if you just signed “Steph” or “Stephanie” most people would figure out (from holding the book in their hands, no less) that it was signed by the author.
    Your perseverance to sign them all with your full name is a testament to your character. πŸ™‚
    P.S. I never hyphenated. It would have been Troyanek-Osantowski and I didn’t think I could bear the pain.

  124. Put me down for a ‘maybe’ on two for the pub! (It depends on work and on the TTC, which now looks like it won’t strike that day at least)

  125. Hey Steph, you doing anything before or after the book signing in Colorado on the 4th? You wanna hang out with me and a couple of girls? If you arn’t busy let me know…we could have a lot of fun!
    If not…no big deal…I will just “holla” at ya at the book signing πŸ˜‰
    Marly aka Yarn Thing

  126. I don’t think anyone else from my group of people have commented that they will be there yet, so I’ll put down that the three of us might show up, it’s going to depend a lot on how late it gets (unfortunately all 3 of us have early morning classes the next day).
    Ya, that is definitely a lot of books though.
    *looks sympathetic for your hands*

  127. I SO wish I was coming to the pub afterwards, but I’m in the wrong country… have a wonderful time, I look forward to seeing the pictures. The sock monkey hat is very cute. and so is Hank.

  128. May I suggest investing in one of those self inking stamps that you can have customized to look like your signature? If you are going to pre- sign some anyway, it might be a blessing to use a stamp instead… That or shorten your signature.
    Wish I was able to go to your signings…I live in Vermont, and just don’t have the money to travel…but I can’t wait to get yor book.
    Have a Great One!

  129. You are truly fortunate that your eight year old nephew loved your monkey hat. I have felt the pain of rejection from a child not liking a knitted object. I spent hours making the Morehouse Farms Alligator scarf for my five yes, five year old nephew. It was one of those projects that seems to go on and on-and the driving force behind completing it is to see the look on the childs face when he receives it! I finish and take it to my nephew- tell him I have surprise for him, and to close his eyes, I wrap it around him and tell him “open your eyes” – he looks at it – and I say “I made you an alligatore scarf do you like it?” He said “NO”. I think I heard my heart crack- and splinter right there- so I did what any mature person would do I took back from him – told him “see if I ever knit for you again” and proceeded to lecture my sister on her child rearing skills. The alligator stays with me now!
    PS. I received your new book today – and I love it! Outstanding job. Aside from the fantastic contents I love the size of it – big fan of petite books! – hope you are enjoying every moment of your success, you deserve it.

  130. my parents hyphenated my name when I was born and then for some reason when I got married I decided to re-hyphenate (dropping one of my names to add in his). I am glad that traveler’s checks have largely gone out of great usefullness because I still remember once signing 100 traveler’s checks with my entire long name, it was torture.
    Then I realized that a signature is rarely legible and so can pretty much be whatever you want it to be. So I made up a signature of my initials which makes me feel very clever every time I do it. From 21 letters to 3!

  131. Hello, tentatively coming to the pub afterwards if my companion is willing/able. Really looking forward to it!

    (*ahem* that would be a reservation for four, please)

  133. Another one for the pub – you can probably add a few people from the Toronto Hookups Crochet Guild and the T-ROCKS (Royal Order of Crocheters and Knitters) group too, as people were talking about both the launch and the afterparty at our retreat this weekend πŸ™‚

  134. That’s like, five hundred books, isn’t it?
    You can sign mine “Steph” if you want to. Provided I can find a way to come hear you this go-round.

  135. I’m impressed with both the sock and the signing! How far is SW Wisconsin from Toronto? I think that I would have to start now, right? Wish I could be there. Have a great time!

  136. I wonder if I left right now if I might make it in time. Then again, I should probably pack some clothing or something since I’m sure ya’ll aren’t wearing shorts up there. Hubby would probably kill me…
    Yup, I just asked him and he said I’m welcome to walk there, but we just can’t afford the gas.
    Guess you’ll just have to come to Phoenix, cuz there’s no way I’m walking THAT far!

  137. Steph,
    As the progress on your new book has mirrored the progress on my masters project on diabetes (try to find the funny in that PLEASE!!!) I applaud your triumphant finish. I have empathized with your struggle with nasty editors and drowned my sorrows in many a sock and lovely glass of cabernet. Thanks for the hope that my writing (though shorter but not sweeter) will be finished shortly.

  138. Do you find that you forget how to spell your own name when you sign it that many times? That sometimes happens to me, and I’ve never signed my name nearly as many times as you!

  139. I’m meeting with Terrie from Maryland, USA for the sock scavenger hunt and we’ll go to the pub as well πŸ˜€

  140. Rachel, I’ll be at the pub knitting for all I’m worth on Sock Madness round 2. Save a pint of Strongbow for me, I’m gonna need it.
    BTW – Hubbo is under STRICT guidelines not to call me on Tuesday, regardless of circumstances. No interruptions this time.

  141. YES to pub for two, please and thanks. Need to show off my first sock ever, a toe-up in progress.

  142. I expect that at least 6 of us will come to the after party at the pub…probably closer to 10
    see ya there! Happy Stitching!

  143. why not just sign them “Yarn Harlot”? That’s how everyone addresses you anyways?

  144. If I am counting correctly (and that is always doubtful), you have had five books published since your first one came out in March 2005. And this year, you have two books slated for publication in addition to the one you are touring with now.
    That’s a shitload of books in a very short period of time.
    I am impressed that you are able to write your name at all.

  145. I hope the Toronto sock hunt went well. Not only were cameras not allowed in the courthouse where I had to appear for jury duty on April Fool’s Day–NO KNITTING NEEDLES WERE ALLOWED!!! I remarked at the screening gate, “But I can take them on an airplane!”, to which they replied, “This isn’t an airplane.” I didn’t dignify that with a response–just tried to exit gracefully.

  146. Can you ship some of these to the B&N in Indianapolis,IN? When Mom called the other day to see if we needed tickets or anything the employee she spoke with assured here there shouldn’t be any problem getting seats, since they weren’t expecting a big turnout, and they’d only ordered 15 copies of the new book for the signing.
    There’s going to be another embarrassed bookstore if that’s seriously all they have. She tried to tell them they needed more like 150, but they weren’t buying it. Think your wonder publicist can talk some sense into them?

  147. Wow that is a lot, I mean a whole lot of books! I am sure your poor hand must have suffered after getting through piles and piles of the latest and greatest publication:)

  148. Perhaps it’s only the camera, but have you noticed the nice color effect between the sock photo and the books? Perhaps you should go for the green on the next pair.

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