In Retrospect

One of the most interesting (or frustrating, depending on who you are in the process) things about publishing, is how long it takes things to go from start to finish. It takes a really, really long time for things to go from beginning to end. Sure, we can put people on the moon, and a whole computer can fit in your pocket, but it still takes more than a year for a book to go from my head to your bookstore. For the last few months I’ve been working on the 2010 “Never Not Knitting” page a day calendar, and the whole thing has made me a little freaked out. Firstly, there’s the fact that nobody is using the 2009 Never Not Knitting one yet, so who knows what anyone thinks of it, and here I am, boldly churning out the next one, without benefit of any feedback at all. Thursdays in that calendar (and this one) are titled “The Way Knit Was”, and for all I know, all of knitterdom will universally agree that you hate hearing about knitting history in a calendar, send me thousands of emails begging me to never do it again, and I will be helpless to change a word of it.

Then there’s the fact that I’m writing entries for dates so far away, that I worry that something will happen in the world that makes what I’m writing now totally irrelevant. The day you guys will start using this is more than a year away, and there’s no way that I can know that what I write for April 10th of 2010 will make any sense at all, considering that I don’t know what will happen on April 10th of 2009. Sheep could be extinct, wool could be rare – knitting could be revolutionized by the invention of something I can’t even imagine right now (self installing zippers would be good) and here my calendar will look stupid and ignorant. I worry. (I know that me worrying excessively will come as a terrible shock to all of you. It’s so unlike me.)

I’ve been trudging along, finishing these things, making decisions, writing, writing, writing.. all with an eye to the deadline of December 1st, and I think maybe it was making me a little more stressed out than I thought it was, because today (oh glorious, glorious day) I finished the thing and emailed it to my editor (days early, I feel so proud) and sat here completely stunned by what happened in my head.

My first thought was “Wow. I’m so glad that’s finished. What a load off my mind.”

The second one?

I think I might want to knit something other than 1×1 rib.

138 thoughts on “In Retrospect

  1. I’m looking forward to opening my 2009 calendar! And to starting my Noro scarf. Can’t wait to see what you knit next to get through the next writing deadline!

  2. The 1X1 rib love is suddenly ever so clear. I am sure everyone will love it. I for one rather enjoy reading history tidbits. πŸ™‚ Congratulations on finishing early. That in and of itself is quite the feat.

  3. Stephanie, I got your calendar a few weeks ago and was unable to wait to read it. Doubt I’m the only one. My feedback to you is that it’s a great read, and I’m looking forward to the 2010 version.

  4. I have already read most of my 2009 calendar. I look forward to reading it again as the days come and go next year. I like the tidbits too.

  5. You needn’t worry – I find knitting history fascinating! I’m so looking forward to January 1, so I can open up my calendar! I’m being very self controlled – I haven’t even taken it out of the box yet! I think I’m growing as a person. πŸ™‚

  6. Last night, while I was up with a wracking cough and could not sleep, I read Free-Range Knitter, specifically the bit where you are comparing the creativity and execution of knitting and writing.
    I think you’ve reached that point again! :o)

  7. Congratulations on the book and on the next few, maybe lazy days before the deadline, with a sense of “mission:accomplished”! Yay!

  8. Thru feast and famine, wars and peace, over time and continents, knitting is still knitting. It is a craft th at is pretty much a constant (new techniques noted) and that knowledge, that I could be shifted almost anywhere on the planet, in almost any century, and pick up some string and sticks….and make friends and influence people…makes me think 2010 will be fine. In more ways than one.
    Be of good cheer. And, Happy American Thanksgiving! You are done!

  9. Ah ha! Now we know why you needed the comfort knitting.
    Don’t worry– sheep will not go extinct; yarn will not become rare. You probably have enough yarn on hand to last you through any short-term shortages.
    Congrats on meeting– and beating!– your deadline. Hurrah for making a living!

  10. I have your 2009 calendar on my Amazon wish list, not that anyone ever looks there but my husband, and he actually knows what to get me without help. (The people who don’t have a clue don’t look at the wish list for some reason I can’t comprehend.)
    I’d really like you to work on that self-installing zipper thing. That would be awesome.

  11. I’m hoping for your 2009 for Christmas but I think hearing about knitting the way it was sounds quite interesting!
    As for that 1×1 rib? I think I would have given up on that a long time ago but that’s me. πŸ™‚ Your scarves are beautiful!

  12. Well done on being in front of the deadline, maybe this represents a learning point that you can apply to your Christmas knitting? (although it’s more fun the other way, for us at least)
    This afternoon I was thinking about your endless fascination with the pretty colour changes – I’m so glad that it’s not just me. I don’t feel half as shallow now.

  13. Should all become extinct by 2010 we could laugh at the anachronism and enjoy the difference. The world as we know it would have changed – but nah, I don’t think it is going to happen.

  14. my OCD makes me afraid of those calendars. the need to do every day’s activities as it comes up fill me with thrills of excitement.
    Then Fenner wakes up, Christmas surprises me again, a client’s server crashes and I realize that I can’t follow a sock pattern at the same time.
    That being said. We are trekking to LK tonight – see you?

  15. My confession—-I already loved your 2009 calendar and loved it. I only look forward to rereading it when it actually is 2009 when i plan to limit myself to a page a day

  16. Writer. Employed. Nope, I’m failing to see the downside.
    (But points to whoever it was yesterday who pointed out that repetitive knitting is a response to pressure.)

  17. well you made me want to knit some 1×1 rib! can’t wait to get me to the LYS to get some noro…. i’m probably not alone – noro should be paying you for the endorsement!

  18. Stephenie,
    Perhaps not so weird to be completing 2010 calendar, as there are already “Used” 2009 calendars for sale from Amazon. Maybe there are people out there who are actually one full year ahead of me, (and you)? It really does boggle the mind, I’m trying to get things cleared up from last week! At times, last month! Ah, I will just go at my own pace and wait until Jan.1, 2009 to begin tearing off the little pages. Looking forward to it, also..Happy American Thanksgiving, ’cause you know we Yanks love ya!

  19. There really needs to be some kind of way to save those ‘early on deadline’ days to use when you’re going to be late on deadline. If you figure it out, please let me know.

  20. Thursday history sounds GREAT!!!
    You really do worry too much. Nothing that has happened–from zippers at all, to velcro, to knitting machines, to being able to buy socks at the store for under $1 a pair has stopped the human race from loving to knit. We all appreciate your effort.
    I don’t blame you about the rib, though. If you need someone to finish one, or to take some yarn off your hands, just give me a holler! πŸ˜€

  21. Congratulations! On both counts – the 1×1 loop has ended AND your calendar for 2010 is finished. To me – since the calendar is completed – nothing can change. The sun will come up and go down just as you’ve written. Just in case the sheep do go dry, though, I think we’ve got enough fiber stashed to last us (the world) through the dry spell AND the next ice age. (We might be down to some odd combinations…but that’s where the 1×1 Brooklyn Tweed pattern comes in handy again.) We might even have enough to share with the weavers. LOL

  22. I gotta ask: Did your Noro have splicing knots in it? I was surprised to find them in such an expensive yarn. My skeins were more variable in gauge than I expected as well. Is yarn that goes from fingering to chunky supposed to be charming?

  23. Next you’re going to tell us that all your Christmas knitting is going to be done early too…but then again, many of us still believe in Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy (even if we are one or the other or both!).
    Seriously, congratulations on sending it off!

  24. Your new book AND your 2009 calendar are the only items on my Christmas list this year and if I don’t get them, I’m buying them for myself! And learning knitting history sounds absolutely delicious. Hum, maybe a whole book on it??

  25. Don’t worry McPhee (I’ve begun to refer/think of you as McPhee because when I say Steph people assume I know you on a personal level and since we’ve never met I figured I might be pushing it…) I bought your 2009 calendar a couple of months ago, and admittedly it is a Christmas present for a friend but she is Knitter and I know she will love it because she introduced me to your books in the first place. Now I am secretly hoping that she will buy one for me as well.

  26. I bought your calendar at the I Knit day in London. And I’m hoping that my hubby is buying me your latest book for Xmas – I’ve dropped lots of (not so subtle) hints! I’ve shown great restrain, and the calendar is still boxed up! Hope you’re impressed! Well done on beating your publishing deadline. Celebrate with some non 1×1 rib knitting!

  27. Self-installing zippers would be great!
    And self-installing buttons too, I suck at sewing on buttons.
    Why is it that I can follow a 32 pattern repeat for lace and can’t sew on a proper button?

  28. Be bold. Try some seed stitch! πŸ™‚
    And since most of us here have worn out at least one copy of everything you’ve written so far, it’s safe to say that we’ll continue to enjoy whatever comes up in the future.

  29. I can’t wait to open my 2009 and I’ll buy the 2010 and won’t be able to wait for that one either….silly girl. We all feel that way.

  30. Since I’ve had a copy of the 2009 calender for a couple of weeks, and though I haven’t read through it yet, I’m sure some of your followers have read the thing from cover to cover. If you haven’t gotten any bad feedback so far, take it as a good sign.
    So, what’s the plan? 2×2 rib, or even 2×4? Or you could really break out and do a broken rib. I think I’m about to be daring and start a seed stich scarf for holiday travel knitting.

  31. Well, my roomie is cursing me for introducing her to the Noro Scarf, since now she’s obsessively knitting it, having frogged her first gift scarf for her brother to work on Noro instead. And well, I don’t knit but I spin and listen to Cast-on and read Yarn Harlot. But I almost want to go buy the 2009 calendar just to read it and give you feedback! πŸ™‚

  32. Oh! I am very tempted to go open my 2009 calendar, and reassure you it is all fine and dandy, but I have been holding on to it for two months now, avoiding the temptation, just so I will have it to look forward to in the coming year. So i can’t ruin all that hard work of not looking by looking. What I am going to take from this story is that YAY! There’s a 2010 one! And I haven’t even started my ’09 one. That means I have TWICE the calendar to look forward to! See? It will be fine.

  33. Well, I know what *I* want for my birthday for the next two years! And if something humongous somehow happens before the second one, then there would just be nostalgia for simpler times like when you were writing that. So you still win.
    (One year? That’s fast. Seventeen months, for me, from acceptance to publication date on book one.)

  34. Just today I started my first bicolor 1×1 rib scarf, inspired by you. I chose Cyprus Mohair (there’s no Noro here in Istanbul) and it’s lovely (so far, at a full five inches). Thanks!

  35. I second seed stitch. Ooooo….seed stitch in two row Noro silk garden.
    I’ve been reading your past entries as I’ve been hiding from homework this week. I like your “boring” entries more than your “interesting” entries. Your obsession with one by one rib makes you appear approachable, down to earth and well, loveable. Because we all love someone who can laugh at their inconsistencies.

  36. I preordered my 2009 calendar and opened it right away. πŸ™‚ I like it! I didn’t read it all, postponing the pleasure of reading daily. I think it’s a winner. I’ll preorder 2010, too. Glad you’re past the calendar work and ready to take on more projects. I’m wondering how many scarves you’ve finished and if they are gifts for Christmas?

  37. If it were anything else besides knitting… I’d understand your fears. However – not much has changed in knitting in 700 years – so don’t worry.
    I LOVE knitting history – it’s one things I love most about knitting – it’s timelessness. I am connected to a woman by her fire 200 years ago making a sock for her child just as I am. Keep the history part – and have faith that whatever you’re called to write will fit in perfectly with that day.
    Am loving your latest book – I read an essay each night as a treat…

  38. I love that you were sticking with the basic knitting under pressure of the looming deadline. I have six or so lace projects going, but as I work away at a big publishing project (on the freelance production side), I have been working on–a hat. When the book is done, it’s back to lace for me!

  39. Not using it. Ha.
    Mine is open to January 1 on my desk. I’ve already gone through it once without ripping the pages out.
    Cannot wait for 2010.
    And me thinks you needed the 1×1 rib so you could knit but stay focused on finishing the calendar.
    And even though I HATE 1×1 ribbing, I’ve got one of these darn things going too because I hated the other scarf I was making out of the stuff.

  40. This is why in my historical research I don’t touch anything that hasn’t been dead for at least 1000 years. After all, when chairman Mao was asked what he thought about the French revolution, he said “It is too early to judge.”… I think he’s got a point there (and you have one about the self-installing zippers. Now that would be great)

  41. I LOVE KNITTING HISTORY!!!
    It is inspiring, interesting, and relaxing. It makes me feel very thankful that the only reason for me to be knitting is because I really and truly enjoy doing it. The knitting expertise of the women in history also make me feel lazy and push me to learn more about my favorite hobby. I had no knowledge of this knitting calendar, and can’t wait to get one! Don’t criticize it so severely, there’s no way it won’t be useful to and loved by at least a few hundred knitters.

  42. I have been told twice by seperate persons I am not permitted to buy your 2009 calendar for myself. I hope this means this will be my Christmas present, because I am not sure there will be any left the day after Christmas. I must always request your books specifically at the book store, so I know anything you write will be a hit. Cast on a sock or sweater and enjoy the next few days!

  43. Um, I have actually opened my 2009 calender and peeked through it a bit, kind of like when you put candycanes on the Christmas Tree and really really try to hold off on ahem, checking the canes for quality control issues and stuff. And then it is suddenly December 20th and your tree is nekkid of candy canes! But unlike the Tree, the days on the calendar do not go *poof* and disappear like the candy canes do. Which is a good thing because I would really like 2009 to have all the days it is supposed to have, and not have to borrow any days from 2010. Though if I did borrow a few days from 2010, that just means you would have to start the 2011 calendar soonest…
    (Sorry for the ramble, is late where I am…)

  44. i will ask the if your calendars
    can be part of the bail out plan
    perhaps by 2010 we can afford one

  45. I bought the 2009 calendar as soon as the LYS I work at got it in, handed it to my husband and said, “Here. This is what you’re getting me for Christmas. Go hide it and wrap it later.” He still hasn’t done either of those things, so the temptation to open it and start reading is great… but I figure, I’ve gone this long, I can hold out for another month.
    I for one love the idea of knitting history once a week In fact, I vote for knitting history twice a week, on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Maybe some additional knitting history on weekends, if a holiday falls during that week. I may not be speaking for most knitters, though.

  46. I didn’t know you had a calander, I am so going out to buy it this weekend. As for the 2009 calender, don’t worry, if something revelutionary happens in the world of knitting making your calender obsolete, just call the editor and have the whole thing changed to a the way knit was calender. Problem solved. By the way, personally, I love knitting history, folklore etc. So when I get the calender, I will look forward to reading the Thursday entry.
    P.S. have you had a chance to try the bananna cookie recipe I sent you?

  47. I was given the calendar for my birthday. It already has a place of honor in the kitchen but I haven’t unwrapped it yet. I think we’ll definitely want the 2010 version!!!

  48. So about half way through your post I thought to myself “so that’s why she’s just knitting scarves – all her creative energy is otherwise engaged two years in the future thinking of 365 humerous and pithy things to say about knitting.”
    Your last sentence doesn’t suprise me.

  49. I am also among the many who got your calender months ago, and I am very much looking forward to reading it every day. So, if Thursday is for history, is there a chance that (with a wink and a nod to us readers) Tuesdays will be for spinning?
    Do not worry, we all love you pretty much unconditionally. Even if some catastrophe happened to make you feel the 2010 calender was…not relevant, I, for one, would no doubt find solace in the tiny, peaceful, consistent family that is knitting.
    And now, surely, with the deadline met and December right around the corner….we will begin to hear about IT. My unfinished knitting list is so long that I am considering starting a mental betting pool with myself about how much will actually get done. I might as well get some entertainment out of the fact that I have an optimist living in my head, as well as a very rude individual who jeers and mocks my knitting list but contributes no actual work, prefering tv instead.
    Congratulatuions on your success!

  50. I have started knitting squares for a Barn Raising blanket for the living room. I knew that the lack of creativity and focus was impacted by work’s demands these days…
    But now, when people ask why my out of office creativity is low, I can use you as my inspiration for embracing the lack of creativity.

  51. Let’s hear it for historical Thursdays! If we can have spinning Tuesdays, it is only fair we take a day to pay homage to our art.
    Hope you treated yourself to some knitting for the early finish – whether 1×1 ribbing or not… As a semi-reformed procrastinator, I’m deeply impressed.

  52. Then you shall be anachronistic rather than irrelevant. The calender shall harken to vintage rather than out of date. And we shall, all of us here commenting say, we read the post where…..

  53. I know I’m getting your 2009 calendar for Christmas because I pre ordered it and told my 15 year old that he’s all set for me for my christmas present! Thankfully, I handed it to him the moment I got it in the mail so I haven’t been able to peak at it.
    I love the idea of historical Thursdays… I can’t imagine not liking something you’ve done… and you getting it done early.. congrats. that’s a feat I’d be bragging about for the rest of the winter. 1×1 ribbing has it’s place in our lives

  54. I can tell you what will happen on April 10 on both years. It will be my birthday….and you have my permission to publish this, as yet, little known fact.

  55. Re: Obsolete knitting techiniques.
    My favorite go to reference for all things knitting is *still* The Complete Guide to Modern Knitting and Crocheting. circa 1947. So even if there is something new under the sun, I’m sure whatever you write, it will still be relevant.

  56. I bought the 2009 as soon as I could and sneak-peeked up through March before Guilt overcame curiosity. I had to hide it far far away…. I did love it. So, keep on all through 2010. It will be great! Got my Noro skeins and am ready to start my first 1X1 rib scarf – thanks for the inspiration – the end of semester is coming and I need something captivating, intriguing, but not too difficult to see me through the final weeks of class and grading umpteen million papers. The alternative is tons of chocolate and the outcome would be substantial – if you catch my drift.
    Come to think of it. The 2009 calendar should maybe be required reading for this special topics course I will teach next semester… hmmmm. Better go look again…

  57. Don’t worry — we’ll all be glad to read whatever you write, whenever you write it!
    I now have a request of you: Please consider joining the “blog rally” described here: http://runningahospital.blogspot.com/2008/11/engage-with-grace.html
    It’s a wonderful effort to encourage families to discuss end-of-life wishes during their family gatherings this weekend (I know, it’s not Canadian Thanksgiving — but many of your readers live in the US). Given your history promoting good causes, like Knitters without Borders, I can imagine you might be willing to support this one as well.
    Thanks for considering it!

  58. Interesting thoughts. What if what you write today is irrelevant in two years.What will the world be like? I wonder if we have these thoughts because the world seems to be changing so quickly, or if due to the speed of information transfer it just seems to be changing faster. I will ponder this as I do my stockinette. Congrats on meeting the deadline early!

  59. Congratulations for shipping it off early. I wonder if Lene is going to take advantage of the extra weekend? P.S. I love history,especially as it relates to my hobbies (knitting, baking and motorcycling)

  60. I have your 2009 ‘never not knitting’ calendar already on my desk and I’ve read a few pages and I love it…. especially the history pages.
    Congratulations on your early finish for the 2010, so… holiday knitting? Is there a schedule? :^)

  61. I can tell you one thing that will happen on April 10, 2009 and 2010. I’ll get a year older. Unless I don’t. But then I wouldn’t be here to complain.

  62. Heh. 2009 is read, ripped, and recycled. Bring on 2010. I’ll take 2011 whenever you can hurry up and get it done.

  63. I don’t have the calendar yet, but my Noro yarn arrived in today’s mail, and I dutifully handed the box over to my son, without one peek inside, so he can wrap it for my Christmas gift. From my husband. Whom I should probably tell. He’ll be pretty happy to know he started his Christmas shopping a little early this year.

  64. love your blog!!! I’m a new knitter. my daughter is in labor with her first baby tonight(thanksgivivng eve in the us)…so very happy this is my first entry.. not my last!! thanks

  65. Sheesh! I know how you feel, I have been knitting stocking cap type hats for about a month. Yesterday I started another one and decided to make something different… I knit a beannie instead. Well Happy US turkey day.

  66. I bought the 2009 calendar as soon as it hit the bookstore! Took it out of box and thought of reading but decided I woould prolong the pleasure and try to do it day by day in 2009. I like knitting history-I had knitting magazines from the 1960s and early 70s until I was hospitalized and they were sent to the trash
    pile by my neatnik daughter.
    cheers, Naomi

  67. I love reading about knitting history! Don’t worry, I’m sure a lot of other people would like to hear about it, too.

  68. Congrats to you! Completion must feel grand. Enjoy the spoils of it all for you will surely begin a new project (writerly and knitterly) before dawn breaks. Living with a writer I know you are writing as you are knitting even if you try to stop it. But please don’t we all love your words!

  69. I’m sure whatever comes out in the calendar for 2010 will be lovely. It’ll hopefully keep me organized for other things, especially helpful since I have to actively force myself to remember which day of the week it is. XD

  70. *gasp!* Something other than 1×1 rib?
    I’m currently wondering if you’ve caused a shortage of Noro with all your stripy scarf talk. I know *I’ve* been eying the shelves.

  71. Does this mean I’ll be ready to knit something besides socks when the tall people move out and the short people are in grade school? COOL! Looking forward to it!

  72. Congratulations on beating that deadline! And with a room renovation to boot – that’s just impressive. Really well done. Now I think a couple of days of knitting love involving the couch, good coffee and wine (depending on the time of day or your mood), and some lovely chocolate is in order.

  73. You can look at it another way – what if you put an entry for a day that is so amazingly apropos that people will be stunned by your intuition? That happens, you know. People will say, “Wow, she’s good! How apropos.” I think that is more likely to happen than what you are worrying about, although I understand it – for example, what a shocker about the economy, who saw that coming? I personally am looking forward to using your calendar, and I also think the history of knitting will be very interesting! I enjoy history and expect to learn a lot from you (as I always do). PS – Happy Thanksgiving! from across the border.

  74. I’ve definitely got enough wool on me to last through 2010. So don’t worry. At least at my house, it won’t be rare until likely 2011 even if it completely disapeared everywhere else NOW!

  75. Back to the scarf for a moment or two. Umming and aahing over which colours to order (our local wool shop doesn’t stock it). How much will I order? Do I need 4 balls? How long is yours? Scarf that is. Help quickly so I can add order to my Christmas wish list.

  76. Funny how things inside the mind can get so worrisome and apocalyptic so fast. It’s always the end of the best of things when you have a serious project that features that best of things.
    I think I may miss those pretty 1×1 ribbed scarves.

  77. Well I want to say thank you. The noro striped scarves have not bored me at all. I thought… oh thank all the gods! And rushed out to be just as enthralled by watching the color change. As I sit in my stress of writing grad school applications I just have to say… THANK YOU for telling me about the perfect project to do while stressed. I just bought yarn for scarf #2 today.

  78. When you’re ready for a new project, may I suggest the Kiki Mariko rug in the new Mason-Dixon Knitting book? I’ve become totally obsessed with mine, and I can imagine you becoming even more obsessed and churning out a dozen of them. Don’t your girls’ renovated bedrooms need throw rugs?

  79. I can see why you would be worried, then again you are The Yarn Harlot. You’re SuperWoman. Why the heck should be worried about anything?!?
    My 2009 Never Not Knitting calendar is on its way to me from Amazon and frankly, I can’t wait to get it. The only dilemma I have is whether I should keep it at home, next to my knitting chair or in the office.
    I think you should tackle a really elaborate cardi or pullover now with cables and such to take your mind off the 2010 calendar you just submitted. πŸ™‚

  80. Nothing’s ever too far out of step, it just becomes “retro”. Oh, and…I think the idea of adding bits of knitting history sounds intriguing. (I honestly didn’t think there was such a thing as knitting history. I NEED this calendar!)

  81. Hi! I bought the 2009 calendar as soon as KnitPicks had it. I waited a whole month to start reading. Love the Thursday in History part. I would, however, like to see more of the Jewish holidays marked (heck, and Indian, and Muslim, and….well, whoever, really) that way I can use the calendar for knitting *and* planning the week ahead (because we all read more than one page at a time, don’t we?).

  82. I, too resisted the urge for the 1×1 rib. I work in a yarn store, for golly sake. Boxes of new Malabrigo colors, (even LACEWEIGHT!). Handmaiden, JItterbug, baby alpaca, yak, handpainteds, and……. quvuit! I’m teaching a sock class, getting ready for shadow knitting class, intro to lace , etc., Christmas presents, promised socks and hats. What am I knitting, you ask? that &%#$# 1 x 1 rib. Can you believe the beautiful shiny look of the Silk Garden? And how it’s all stripey colors instead of that “Noroey” gradual color change? It’s a disease, I tell ya. So is that why I’m already thinking about scarf #2?

  83. Plain vanilla socks. I just broke loose of a long stretch of garter stitch blanket square knitting with socks.
    By the way, I have the 2009 calendar sitting on my desk, and I’ve been resisting the temptation to read it all through… Maybe I should have? πŸ˜‰

  84. I must confess that I gave up buying knitters calendars, but I am sure that yours is wonderful! If I were still buying knitting calendars, I would like one with a “break” once a week. So please continue!
    Happy birthday, Annette and Beth!

  85. I used to work in publishing in the textbook industry. I know how you feel. Although, I was in design, so we waited on the writers and editors, not the other way around. When I worked in it, though, we were getting shorter and shorter deadlines. The government were getting the standards to us later and later and expecting the books sooner. Sometimes, I miss the work, but not the deadlines. Anyway, this is my first time leaving a comment, but I’ve been reading the blog for a while. Any chance I can get the calendar in South Korea? lol I’ll probably just have my mom ship me a copy as a Christmas present. πŸ™‚

  86. Oooh, I love my 2009 calendar. It came last week and I can’t wait for the new year to begin. It is humorous, but more, it is a lasso back to the calm realities. It makes me think of knitting and not the harsher moments of life. Nice to hear your voice, too, in what you write. Good quotes. I tried not to devour it in one sitting so it will be a surprise every day. I already am looking for the 2010 calendar. I wonder if we can pre-order it on Amazon?

  87. Now here’s something bizarre. I clicked on your calendar link and discovered that Amazon.com is advertising six USED copies of your 2009 calendar. Can you work this out? A)Why would you want to buy a used calendar? B)Actually, what ‘use’ could it have been put to in the year before the one it was written for?

  88. Oh you can’t stop knitting the Yarn Crack scarf now! Say it ain’t so! Congrats on beating your deadline though. That would be way too much pressure for me. I can’t imagine writing a 2010 calendar now. (That’s probably why you’re a writer and I’m a dyer LOL!) I think you’re much braver than you realize because writing a calendar over a year before you need it is a tremendous leap of faith. Now back to my regularly scheduled scarf!

  89. I get like this even when I write a few months in advance for a magazine. It melts my brain. I feel your pain.

  90. You can write that it is my birthday with my address included. :O)
    Also, regarding the scarf addiction thing: I think that you may be fogetting the addictive quality of knitting Noro. For some reason, the color changing makes you knit “just to the next color”. Then combine that with striping “just to the next row.”
    I just finished a child-size Tomten Jacket in 6 days. Reasoning: Noro color addiction and all garter stitch knitting.
    Or maybe just plan old knitting addict.
    My husband asked me if I was going to get carpal tunnel last night.

  91. I didn’t know you were doing the calendar until I was in Borders Glasgow at the end of October, browsing for something picturesque and/or amusing to brighten 2009. And lo! I spotted your calendar. I never even considered a knitting calendar might exist. I have managed to not open it, but have placed it on a very high shelf until Jan 1st. It will then most likely reside on my desk, freaking out the muggles. Marvellous. I may take to knitting on my lunchbreak soon…

  92. Don’t worry, I don’t know why other people love each and every word coming out of your pen, but I love the way you put things more than the things themselves. Take a bad singer rendering a good song – unbearable. Take a good singer interpreting a hideous song – still great, sometimes even stunning. I mean, you wrote about refurbishing and still kept me interested. If that does not say it all.
    On the other hand, maybe being nervous only is the penance for spreading the scarf bug. I never was interested in scarfs, neither did I have a strong inclination to buy Noro, and a 1×1 rib honestly bores me stiff. But since one week I am toying with that yarn and I even frogged my attempt at a 2×2 scarf yesterday, because it really looks better in 1×1.
    And now you sneak off for something completely different after having passed the torch? I hope you fitted in some knitting-bug-vaccination appointments for us in your next calendar. I for one would need it. LOL (But I might not want it – all of a sudden I cannot even remember what I did without scarfs.)

  93. Self installing zippers? What a fantastic idea! And I have an idea how it could work, too. On the selvedge of the zipper fabric, they weave in little loops, appropriately spaced. Then, as you knit, you pick up the loops and knit them together with the last stitch of the row. (or a couple of stitches in, to give a little flap to cover the zipper). Ta-da! There’s probably a really good reason why that wouldn’t work, but I’m not seeing it at the minute.

  94. How did I miss the fact that you were putting out calendars ? What planet do I live on ? Can hardly wait to get my hands on one. Congratulations on getting 2010 done and freeing up some time for Christmas.

  95. My first comment to your blog. I’ve already read the 2009 calender, a month at a time like chapters. Can’t wait for 2010. When I found your blog I started at the beginning in 2004 and spent weeks reading. It just like a great book I couldn’t put down. Keep up the good work. You even inspired me to knit clogs for my brother-in-law. Now I want to see if I can find the leaf socks for a leaf pattern.

  96. Didn’t I tell you about the jumping up and down and squeeling and the immediate purchase when I saw your calendar for sale? I would never have done that had I not been fully confident that it will be fabulous…as I’m sure 2010 will be too! You are brilliant!

  97. Nooo, don’t leave out the knitting history!! It’s the two most interesting subjects in the world combined! SO COOL!!
    Can’t wait to see the calendars. πŸ™‚

  98. Thursday and “The Way Knit Was” sounds like my favorite day (of course, I know nothing about the other days). Knitting history is the BEST!! Worry not!

  99. I’ve put your calendar on my Christmas wishlist. This means that I’ll probably buy it for myself, put it under the tree (along with a mysterious box of chocolates that always shows up) and act surprised when I open it.
    p.s.Being Canadian, I’m sure you grew up knowing the words AND meaning behind the song, “Allouette”. Growing up down here stateside and monolingual I sang this little ditty in happy oblivion until recently. Then, like the fool that I am, I divulged the translation to my 7 year old this week. In the overall scheme of childhood songs, this isn’t any more disturbing than “Rock a Bye Baby” and likewise, should I assume that French speaking children too don’t contemplate the lyrics too much?

  100. I’m not reading the previous bazillion comments, but I wanted to voice my opinion that we need MORE knitting history!!! You have at least one fan here who will appreciate those Thursday features. (My favorite column of Knits used to be the one where they’d show a knitting artifact and do some detective work on it, telling us all about whatever they could figure out about it… I miss that writer…)
    Congratulations on finishing the ms. early!

  101. > Sure, we can put people on the moon, and a whole computer can fit in your pocket, but it still takes more than a year for a book to go from my head to your bookstore.
    Well, yeah. But how long did it take to put people on the moon or to make pocket-size computers? How many years of researching, studying, thinking, organizing, checking, and rechecking? How many hours over how many years of work did it entail? And how many humans were involved?
    It took way, way longer than a year for each.
    I’m an editor by profession, and I know how long it takes to conceive of a book and then get it into print and finally into your friendly bookstore: really, really long! But your editor is your friend. We make writers and books look good. We take sows’ ears and turn them into silk purses. Or cotton purses, anyway.

  102. Now the decks are cleared for the annual Christmas knitting frenzy and melt-down. I loved “Free-Range Knitter” and I have been holding off on the calendar. Soon, now.

  103. We’ll love them in spite of the Knitting History – hahah – even though we only come here by habit to look at the pretty pictures . . . .

  104. I already have your 2009 calendar and I think it is great especially that you remembered New Zealand on 6 February. Cheers

  105. It’s called conservation of energy: there really is only so much that we can wrap our heads around at one time, although I suppose some of us can wrap more than others. Did you know there is conservation of happiness too (there’s only so much to go around any given group of people)?

  106. Hey! If 2010 is a good year we will knit to celebrate…If it is not so good we will knit to console ourselves. Either way we will love your calendar and blog because it brings out the togetherness of all knitters. blessings Joan

  107. So glad to hear you’re working on a self-installing zipper to be available 4/10/10.
    (Seeing how many people share my button/zipper ineptitude, it’s a wonder there aren’t more people running around with cardigans that don’t close.)

  108. My dearest Harlotta,
    1. I have my 2009 calendar and have managed not to peek since I like a surprise. 2. I read every page of “No Idle Hands: A Social History of American Knitting” and was interested by every word.
    I think Thursdays will be ok.

  109. Have to ask – did you use yarn you dyed yourself for the sock you’re working on? The colour’s are absolutely beautiful!

  110. I have 4 of your 2009 calendars stashed for gifts..one being for me of course..I’ve hardly been able to contain myself to not rip the package apart and sneak a peek..but being a good girl here..

  111. We may not be using it yet, but we’ve definitely gone through it! We’re Harlot fans, aren’t we? It’s fabulous! πŸ™‚

  112. Steph,
    I preordered the 2009 Calendar, received it in August and read every page, I couldn’t resist. It is great, and I can’t wait to read it again through daily use.
    I’m sure 2010 will be fantastic!

  113. well, Stephanie-I was first introduced to your writing when I was asked to write a book review of one of your books.The same friend just gave me “The things I learned from knitting-whether I wanted to or not,” and I must say I can’t wait to get started! Keep on writing! and excuse my ignorance-I must not get out much-but what is the calendar thingy everyone is raving about? I feel like I’ve been left out of something BIG-someone ‘splain please

  114. Yes! Knitting history! Always, always *please* include the history.
    That’s one of the most fascinating parts of knitting; that it connects us with with the hands of the long-forgotten.

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