It’s all the scary part

Late Friday afternoon this arrived.


My brand new book of essays about knitting. Free Range Knitter: The Yarn Harlot writes again. I wrote it.

It arrived late enough in the day that I had actually started thinking that it might not come until Monday, and that was fine with me. (I thought.) Then I wouldn’t have to spend the weekend exhausting myself working though my own deeply personal process of accepting that a new book has been published. A new book means swinging alternately back and forth for a few days between total juvenile pride and glee in my accomplishment (I have been known to dance) and a consuming fear and loathing of sending it out into public.

Here’s the thing. Being a writer is a scary job. Every part of it is scary. It is scary to try and say things so that people will understand you, knowing that if they don’t understand you, or if your idea is genuinely stupid, you will have no opportunity to say more about it or correct their ideas, or help them understand what you really meant and that you’re not actually the raving moron that they think you are based on the third sentence of paragraph six.

Once written, it is the book that has the relationship with the reader, not the writer, and it is the minute that I see that actual book… the finished thing – I realize that if I’m holding it in my hands, that more copies of this book are being sent to real people right this minute (and some of them even pre-ordered, and how terrible is that going to be when it sucks) and that from this moment forward – for the rest of my life- this book has made it absolutely certain that some people are going to stand around in yarn shops talking about how I’m a complete moron, I don’t deserve to earn any money (even a fraction of a dollar per book), and that frankly they wish that I wasn’t so full of myself that I thought I was special enough to write books at all. When I hold this book in my hands, that’s what I know.. and since every person has a voice inside them, the voice of their supremely unsuccessful self (a 16 year old short- skinny-bad hair-braces low self-esteem self, in my case) saying that anyway, the fear catches, and coalesces into nausea and a certainty that this can’t end well.

“From the moment I picked your book up until I laid it down I was convulsed with laughter. Some day I intend reading it.”

– Groucho Marx

I finished this book in the woods. I finished it sitting alone in the dark winter, snow falling outside, fire crackling near the desk – and when I finished it I pushed back from the desk and went and opened a bottle of my favourite wine, and I poured a pretty big glass and went back and sat there and stared at the computer. I stared and I thought to myself that it was a pretty darn good book – maybe even excellent, and I felt overwhelming pride and the happiness that comes from doing a hard thing as well as you can. I toasted myself, and I may have cried a little.

“Success is a finished book, a stack of pages each of which is filled with words. If you reach that point, you have won a victory over yourself no less impressive than sailing single-handed around the world.”

–Tom Clancy

Holding it in my hands today, my trepidation stems from knowing that there is no possible way that every person who reads it (and oddly, some people who don’t read it) will like it. There will be people who say that it’s not good, and I will have to lie in bed at night and try and figure out if that’s true. There will be people who love it, and as happy as I’ll be to hear it, I’ll have to lie in my bed and wonder if that’s true too. There will be the people who misunderstand me… and I won’t be there to correct them or mend my relationship with them. I’ll have to accept that they don’t know me, that the book isn’t me, and that just because they hate and misunderstand the book doesn’t mean that they hate me – that they don’t even know me. This will be extra hard, since these people often don’t say “I hated that book, it bored me to tears” but actually often say “Stephanie Pearl-McPhee? I hate her. She bores me to tears.” You can see how that might take a little self talk to get through. I have to remember it’s the book. It’s the book. It’s the book. They don’t know me. They’ve never met me. It’s the book. That’s their opinion of the book(s).

“From my close observation of writers…they fall into two groups: 1) those who bleed copiously and visibly at any bad review, and 2) those who bleed copiously and secretly at any bad review.”

–Isaac Asimov

Then there are the people who just aren’t going to like my writing.. and that’s totally fair. I don’t enjoy Dostoevsky’s writing, and clearly there a lot of people who disagree with me. I don’t take that too personally (except late at night. I never read reviews after 11pm.) Just because my sister doesn’t like orange and I do, doesn’t mean that orange is a bad colour, ya know? I find a way to love those people anyway. Then there are the people who have expectations I really can’t meet – no matter how hard I try. I still remember lying on my bed with a cool cloth on my forehead the day that I read a review of one of my books that said that it “wasn’t as funny as it could have been” and that the reader “only laughed out loud once or twice per chapter.” I lay there, in the dark with a cool cloth, resisting the urge to write back and say “Do you have any idea how hard it is to make someone laugh out loud once with your writing, never mind once or twice per chapter? How funny do I have to be lady- because that’s pretty damned funny” and realizing, as I lay there in the dark, that I really had to let go.

“Honest criticism is hard to take, particularly from a relative, a friend, an acquaintance, or a stranger.”

–Franklin Jones

Then there are the people who tell me I’m brilliant, who write reviews that make me glow with pride. (The reviews I show my mother.) People who line up at signings and say the most incredible things to me, compliment me, bring me yarn (I love those people) tell me I’m just so funny, and such a good writer and how much they just really, really love it, and lying in bed in the dark, I realize that as much as I really, really don’t want to…. I have to let that go too. That those people don’t really know me either. That if I can’t accept (and I really- really need not to) that you can hate me based on my writing, that you can’t truly love me based on it either. That neither one is really true… that almost everyone, whether they claim to love or hat me, is talking about the book. This thing that for better or for worse, is a thing separate from me, and then that’s hugely painful too, because really, the essays in this book came from me, and are deeply personal, and they were made by me and from me… but in the end just aren’t me… but are my work, and I can take responsibility for it and enjoy doing it well, but I can’t take it as a personal endorsement either way – just a much appreciated and needed professional one. Every person who comes to a signing moves something in me, and it’s my job to make sure it doesn’t puff me up any more than the criticism rips me up.

“To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.”

–Elbert Hubbard

I held that book on Friday, and I realized that it wasn’t just a book I wrote (although the thrill of that NEVER, ever gets old) It’s the beginning of a journey that will lead me somewhere. I’m about to get back on being critiqued, analysed, discussed, condemned and praised, and that this is simply part of being a writer. There is absolutely no way to write a book (no matter how silly or mundane) that avoids it. It is impossible to write a book that doesn’t open you up to all of the wonderful things and the hurtful things and the incredible things. It is impossible to do this scary job and say “I would only like the good parts please. I don’t have the self-esteem for the rest. Thanks so much.” I held that book on Friday and I thought “You twit”, and then I thought about the only real reason to write a book.

Every once in a while, I meet or hear from someone other than the people who read my book and love it (though I love those people, and really need them for balance) or people who read my book and hated it (and I try to love those people – and remember that I need them for balance) but someone who for some reason found a connection with the book. Someone who tells me that they read something I wrote that clarified something in them, something that moved them, something that made them laugh out loud, or something that helped them feel a sense of belonging, taught them something, or helped them somehow make a small movement in their life, and they come to me and say ” I wanted you to know that your book meant something to me” and in that moment, were it appropriate, I could leap across the table and kiss them full on the mouth… because what those people are really saying, no matter how they say it, is “I heard you”… and I can’t tell you how good that feels. In that moment, there isn’t any better job in the whole world.


So here we go again. This is my new book. I hope you like it. I do.

346 thoughts on “It’s all the scary part

  1. FIRST!!! Please post finished Misti Alpaca socks and advise if you found buttons in London. So glad you had a great trip.

  2. Once upon a time, I had a major research project published in a very small historical journal. The pride I felt in that (and still do!) was pretty cool. A couple of years later by chance I ran into someone that had involvement with my topic and asked me if I had read that particular article. I said “well, I wrote it” and was pleased that someone had actually read it, until I was struck with the paralyzing fear that ohmigoshsomeoneactuallyREADit.
    I can’t wait to read your new book, I’m sure it’s going to be fabulous.

  3. Congrats, Stephanie, and chin up! You’re a writer, and that’s an amazing thing-and you’re also a blogger, which means you actually do reach people and connect with them and clarify things for them *all the time.* You can get used to it, you can! Also, 1) love the quotations, and 2) yes, I preordered it.

  4. Yes, you’re so right. The minute a book lands in the reader’s hands, the relationship is between the written words that he/she interprets with his or her frame of reference. That’s the EXCITING part. The book is somewhat reinvented every time it is read by a different person. Too cool, no??? And I am SO looking forward to having it in my own mitts to read!!! Thank you for spending that time all alone in the woods just for us!

  5. Put me on the I can’t wait to read it list. I have enjoyed every one of your books so far. Please continue to humor us Stephanie.

  6. Oh Stephanie, where to start (I was a production editor for a college textbook publisher). First of all “you can’t [repeat can’t] please all the people all the time.” And most importantly, as to the book content THAT’S WHAT EDITORS ARE FOR. It’ll be a hit, and your public loves you (but you already know that, right?) 🙂

  7. Hi,
    Just wanted to let you know that I’ve read most of yours books, and my opinions of them ranged from -pretty good- (worst) to -I have read it 20 times, keep it on my desk except for when it is in my knitting bag, and tell all my friends- (best). I tell all my friends about your blog too, and admire you for having published even one book, which I really hope to do someday. Looking forward to the new one. Thanks for writing it!

  8. I really can’t wait to get my hands on this book! I read the little sample that you were giving out at Book Expo and I can’t wait to get to read the rest of it!

  9. Stephanie, I have read your blog and have bought all your books (The new one is pre-ordered.) I have never written to you but I want to say that I have laughed and have cried over your words so, yes, ” I heard you”. Thank you so much for all the pleasure you have given me. Sincerely, Gale McGee

  10. Congratulations! I can’t begin to tell you how often your work has resonated with me. It’s a great reminder of how similar yet different we all are and that, in so many ways, we are all in this together.

  11. Woohoo! I have been waiting for you to come out with a new essay book. While I have liked all your books, Secret Life of a Knitter was my favorite.
    Can’t wait to read the new one!

  12. To expose your self – your true self – to all who care to look (or read, or in your case both) is testament to the significance and value of both the individual and her community. Thank you.

  13. I just read your last one and I really enjoyed it. I have to confess I haven’t read your others (sorry !) – I had the ET reaction. That is I refused to go and see ET in the cinema (yes I know that ages me) simply because EVERYONE kept telling me how good it was. So I dug my heels in. Contrary like.
    But you were funny and clever in London so I gave you a try and I’m glad I did :0)
    Of course my 10 year old picked it up the other day and said :
    “Another knitting book ?”
    “But there’s no patterns in it ?”
    “So what’s it about ?”
    “Knitting.It’s funny.”
    “You are SO weird Mum.”

  14. I’m a writer as well (albeit not a published one-yet), but I’m getting my graduate degree in writing and need to share what I write almost weekly. I spent my first year obsessing over the fact that I wanted everyone to like my stories, when this summer it hit me: I’m going to write things that *I* would pick up and read. Writing is a hard enough job without worrying if other people will enjoy it. So what am I writing a short story about presently? Knitting, of course!

  15. Dear Stephanie,
    Congratulations! I remember you being in the woods when there was all that snow and you were writing through it all. My daughter was writing her Xmas list the other day – and asked what I wanted. I now know I’m going to ask her to buy it for my Xmas.

  16. Although I came late to your books, I am now in the process of reading them. I keep one beside my bed and before I go to sleep each night I read a bit from it. It almost always makes me laugh, but mostly it makes me feel understood. It’s nice to know that that there is someone else out there as obsessed as I am.
    Thank you!

  17. Well said! Writing is a journey and it is hard. I wish I could figure out how to be more fluid about it, because if I were then doing the academic writing I need to do wouldn’t be so intimidating. Sometimes it’s a lot easier to hope that nobody reads what you wrote and you can just put your head down and keep going… I envy you that what you write has a much better chance of being read AND understood AND heard.
    Looking forward to the new book!

  18. Yes. I say Yes.
    Thank you Stephanie.
    Heather – exactly same with me re/ ET. I’ve still yet to see it.

  19. I admire your choosen occupation! Most of us know that we will be working at the same job next year and that we will be paid x number of dollars. Yours is totally dependant on what you do and how well you do it…that scares me even just thinking about it.
    You do it so well, and it gives you joy…how great is that!
    So people buy her book, buy more than one and keep our Stephanie working!!!!

  20. I love your quotations, particularly the Isaac Asimov one. Congratulations on another book! I’m sure it’ll be a success. And I’m glad it’s in the same format as Yarn Harlot — I think that’s the only other one of yours that I “heard you” in. So I can’t wait to read this one!

  21. Steph, I’m a graphic designer and go through similar experiences whenever anything I design is finished. I also worked at an internationally known magazine for 12 years as an editor/designer. Let me just say that I have SO much respect for writers. It’s one of the hardest things to do, EVER!
    Congratulations on your newest book!!! I’m sure it will be wonderful!
    p.s. I preordered it too!!

  22. I have a personal connection with each of your books. They make me laugh, they explain stuff to me about knitting and about life. They make me feel like I’m not weird because I cart around wool and sticks and make wearable garmets for people. I know that I don’t know you. I know that I will never recognize you at Rhinebeck or any of the other places we’ll both be in life, BUT, I will always recognize your books and your blog and welcome both into my home.
    (I would like it if you would post who we can call for signed copies of the delightful little bundles of creativity if possible.)
    Thank you again,
    Deb in PA

  23. I don’t know you. I know your writing. You write very well. I enjoy your writing very much. Your writing is smart and funny and insightful. I suspect it got that way somehow.
    Peace out,

  24. Let me think. I have gone back and read your blog from the first day. I have read your books. And every once in a while something hits me – i am not the only one? I am not the only one who has to balance work and kids. Not the only one where there are days when I just want to hide, knit and drink coffee? Not the only one who looks at Seurat and is completely amazed by his detail.
    You have made me laugh hysterically and cry. I think you are an incredible person with an amazing gift to write and take pretty good pictures too.
    Some may hate, some may love but everyone who reads – learns. 🙂
    I can’t wait for the new book!

  25. I’ve been looking forward to this one.
    (And dare I ask that, in the midst of the joy and the angst of seeing another one of your books published, you take a moment to pour a bit of coffee on the ground for all those books that landed in the Drawer? It hurts to be misunderstood by readers, but it really hurts to be misunderstood by editors, and so never have an opportunity to be misunderstood by readers.)

  26. Stephanie, with all your writing–the books and the blog, the funny and the poignant–you have an incredible way of touching people, putting your finger on the point, saying what we all wish we could say had we the opportunity. Never fear: We “hear you.” Keep talking.

  27. if it’ anything like the other books you’ve written then I have to say in pure Aussie…No worries! (and I’m not even from down under, though I have been frequently accused of same).I look forward to getting my hands on it…maybe for my next flight to the UK.

  28. Stephanie,
    My friends think I am crazy because I insist on trying to make them read this knitting book even though they do not knit and why on earth would I want them to read a book about knitting, let alone watch youtube videos with somebody speaking about knitting, and why thinks keep coming out of my mouth that begin with “You know, the Yarn Harlot says…”
    A few days ago, I finally accepted that I HATED how Clue 1 for my mystery shawl was shaping up, that I had made some wrong choices and some mistakes associated with my inexperience with the yarn, and I sat there and I looked at it, trying to figure out how this disaster had happened and wondering why, when I hated the first three rows, I kept going instead of stopping and evaluating. 25 rows and a gazillion beads later, I finally accepted that I hated it and I wasn’t happy, and you were there in my mind, reminding me that frogging is not failure, that you do it all the time and that it is no big deal, and I like knitting, so frogging means I just get to knit more. Your books helped me internalize that it is okay to “have a do-over” and that it is not the end of the world, and that it is more important to love what I am knitting than it is to finish, or to follow designer instructions. (I know this sounds kind of like a backhanded compliment, so I want to say – you knit many things well, I enjoy all the stuff you knit well, but there is a lot more to learn from stuffups and triumphing over them)
    I’ve learned a lot about knitting from you, very little of it technique related (though I do have a bunch of those posts bookmarked for when I am ready to learn those things). I have tried things I wouldn’t otherwise have done because you blogged about the yarn, or the pattern, or the stitches, and drew me in and made me want to try something. I look at things that intimidate me and think “do I really want to try it,” and then I come here and see you knitting thousands of tiny little leaves and I’m like, you know, if the Harlot can do that, I can take this on.
    So I guess what I want to say is, thanks for being my knitting muse. Carry on, Stephanie, and may the knit be with you.

  29. Thank goodness you have the courage to get through all the self doubt and fear to give us something that will become a part of so many of our lives. I could blather on about how much reading your blog and books has helped me become a little more fearless but I shall stick with thanking you for sticking yourself out there where we all have the opportunity to get what we can from your writing.

  30. Congratulations! I can’t wait to read this one. Your writing is always fun and insightful.
    According to Amazon’s Publisher highlights there are 60 million knitters in America. WOW. You have a huge audience!

  31. Well, I can’t say whether I like you or hate you based on your books, but I’ve liked them, and I respect the work and wit that went into them. If I enjoy it half as much as I enjoyed them, I’ll call it another success on your part.

  32. Is this like the Canada Day disclaimer? Because you’ll recall how well that one worked out…
    But ET was really good.

  33. We hear you. (I know I speak for many.)
    We love you (as you speak to us through your writing).
    Thank you for your books, and blog.
    (Okay. I’m back to a little old singular person again. Another book! Super cool! I can’t wait to read it!)

  34. I am a minister, and your process is awfully familiar to me. Except on a more frequent and smaller scale, as I write sermons for Sunday worship services!
    At some point I realized that the most helpful thing I could do when I was writing (and later, preaching) a sermon was to remember that there are always two people sitting in front of me in a given congregation.
    The first is the person who sits in the pew thinking, “this is the most amazing thing I’ve ever heard, it’s changed my way of thinking entirely and inspired me…”
    The second is the person who sitting three seats over and one pew back from the first one, and thinks, “What in the NAME OF ALL THINGS HOLY is she talking about? Would this arse of a joker please sit down and shut up?!”
    It helps to calm that inner brace-faced, fly-eye glasses-wearing, flat chested, totally unpopular geek of a teenager that lives inside of ME! Because I know that all I can do is speak my own truth as best I know how, and someone’s gonna love it and someone else is gonna think it’s daft and boring. And everyone in between, too!
    Don’t know if it helps, but that’s what works for me.

  35. I am sure everyone is entitled to their opinion but I find it hard to believe people dislike your work, that is just me. I was wondering if you are doing a book tour for this book? One starting in toronto would be great (I am a student at UofT)
    Cannot wait for the new book!!

  36. Steph, I have read all your books, and I have had the privilege to see you speak in person, and although I don’t know you personally, I feel I can relate to you from your writings. I read your books and think to myself “Wow, there are other people out there who feel like I do about knitting”. It makes me feel good. That’s what you do, make people feel good.

  37. You don’t get it. We love YOU! We know you from reading your blog every day, viewing your video on YouTube, listening to your podcast interviews and reading your books. We’d love anything you wrote because we feel like you are our friend.

  38. First time commenter on your wonderful blog here, Stephanie, but I just wanted to say congrats. I love your books and your blog and can’t wait to get my hands on this one! Of course, that means I’ll have to put the knitting down for an afternoon or two in order to read…I think I can handle it!

  39. Here we go… your book meant something to me. I think in Knitting Rules you said, “don’t be afraid to knit crap.” That really spoke to me, and helped me take giant steps toward being that elusive fearless knitter I’d so love to be. A friend in my knit group categorized me as an adventurous knitter, and I was really pleased with that. So thanks! And congrats on the new book. I look forward to reading it.

  40. Make sure you always carry one with you in case you run into the clueless crocheter on the subway again.

  41. Well,
    I personally know we connect on a mother-wife level. The knitting thing is just the dessert part.
    Like many other before me have said, fear not the success of this new book. You are published. Many times over. And there probably are psuedo-writers and Lit. Professors that are just pissed about that.
    Living well is Life’s greatest revenge.

  42. I understand what you mean when you say that people don’t separate you from the book.
    I’ve read books I adored, and thought I really wanted to meet the author because (s)he must be wonderful and I was sure I would love her/him. Then I met the author and discovered that they were a big disappointment.
    In your case, though, the books ARE you (from what I can see). I can understand that your knitting books would bore non-knitters to tears, and you should understand that, too.
    But the majority of your readers are knitters (since that’s what you write about), and I haven’t talked to a single knitter who’s read any of your books that didn’t love you. You seem to have a great personality, and that shines through in your books (at least the ones I’ve read). So, people are going to like you and your books.
    At your next book signing, look around at all the people who came to see YOU! They wouldn’t do that if they didn’t at least like you. There are hundreds and hundreds! At each signing! And at least three times as many that wanted to come and see you but had the car break down/couldn’t get off from work, etc.
    And on that subject, I saw you over a year ago at Bailey’s Crossroads in Virginia, and found out some things that bear on this.
    I wrote some knitting patterns, and happened to sit in the audience next to someone who had bought one of my patterns, and she gushed about how wonderful the pattern was. I also gave you a couple of patterns, and was surprised and delighted when you asked for MY autograph! So, as an author of something as small as a knitting pattern, I thank you.
    There is a story by Robert Heinlein called The Unpleasant Profession of Jonathan Hoag. There is a quote near the end that I couldn’t find, but it goes something like:
    Writing is nothing to be ashamed of. But do it in private and wash your hands afterward.
    I thought you’d enjoy that.

  43. Book tour? Details? Please?
    And here’s one – your book Knitting Rules enabled me to teach my oldest son high school math. It encouraged me to try knitting socks, and I swear, if I hadn’t been absorbed with my sock knitting all those evenings I sat beside him while he worked on his problem sets, I might have screamed at him rather than be patient. To be patient, you have to not pay too much attention.
    And then I wrote an essay about knitting and teaching math and earned 50 dollars from a national home education magazine.
    So, see? You have an impact.

  44. You know, I’ve been rereading some of your books recently [compliment #1: somebody actually REreads your books]. They are still funny as hell upon second (or third or fourth) reading[compliment #2: your books are still funny upon rereading, even unto the 3rd or 4th time]. It is stunningly clear to me, as I try to write on my own blog, that you are indeed a talented writer [compliment #3], unlike me. It is also obvious that you’re a lovely person [compliment #4] and I regret deeply that I don’t get to sit around and knit with you [compliment #5]. I’m looking forward to reading this new book [compliment #6].
    So ditch the self-loathing. Go buy yourself some scrumptious reward yarn and a bottle of a decent merlot, and start planning a wicked fun launch party. Preferably one I can make this time, OK?

  45. Congratulations! I could never imagine doing what you do – I don’t imagine I could not internalize the criticism. I’ve only ever read one of your books, but it prompted me to want to check out the rest. I plan on starting with this new one. Bravo!

  46. Barf. It makes me barf on your behalf. I barfed before every show because it doesn’t matter how the audience loved me or hated me there’s that edge an artist has to stay on in order to service (literally) the audience without catering to them and losing your ‘self’ in that moment.
    oh barf. my stomach flipped for you.
    It’s exhausting. Congratulations on taking the leap again – that you keep putting it out there is ballsier than most people know.

  47. You give freely of who you are in your writing, and your compassion for others and your self-awareness are made open and visible through your words: and the rest of us aspire to that. To being as gracious as the best in you. That you are human and imperfect at it, but perfectly willing to say so, makes you all the more dear, and I for one absolutely cannot wait to get my copy of this book. Thank you for writing it.

  48. I have taken a few creative writing classes and while that in no way compares with writing books and putting them out there for the world, I think it makes me understand a little bit of what you mean about the whole “putting yourself out there” thing.
    I have to say though, that I used to be kind of a “closet knitter”. I learned young but didn’t realize that there was a whole world of knitters out there. Then someone told me about your blog and I came over here and pretty soon I bought your books and then I started my own blog and then I was on Ravelry and now I have a local knitting group and plan trips around yarn stores and I have become a Knitter. Because of the community of your blog as well as because of your writing. Some people may not like it, that happens but it does make a difference to lots of people.

  49. Stephanie,
    I always look forward to your books, and blog. I believe it is because you are so like so many of us women out here. Wanting to prove to the world(and ourselves) that we really can do it all! We can have a career, family, hobby and fun all at the same time. But, deep down we are all like that little duck – underwater, paddling like crazy. By reading your words, I have found a “friend” who I can laugh with, cry with and boost my self esteem with. Keep writing and just live in the moments of joy. We’re out here cheering you on!

  50. Thank you so much for this post. I have always been so afraid to stick my neck out for my true love (writing) because my self-esteem is on shaky ground to begin with. Your writing makes me laugh much more than twice per chapter, and this time it made me cry, too. (And this is a GOOD thing!) Keep at it!

  51. Dear Stephanie,
    Thank you for this post. You got me twice–once when you equated all the yarn we stash with the love we are trying to express for those for whom we knit, and in this post when you said.”It is impossible to do this scary job and say “I would only like the good parts please. I don’t have the self-esteem for the rest. Thanks so much.”
    My daughter at college is struggling with the fact that life dishes out hard work and unpleasantness regularly and unavoidably, and that you don’t get to say, “I would like only the good parts please.” I took so many more words and so much more time to try to explain that to her last night. If only I could channel your ability so sum up so succinctly, and with humor too.
    I don’t know you, but I do know your work and find it inspiring. I think I want to be you when I grow up! (Only without the Canadian winters)

  52. I like that the first comment wasn’t about the book at all but knitting pattern & buttons. Kinda’ “yeah, yeah that’s nice but what about the pattern for the socks!” I love that we’re all a bit obsessed! But, hey, it’s not liquor or crack cocaine. OK, we’re a bit obsessed by liquor but not the cocaine!!
    As for me, your blogs about spinning lit a fire in me that I’ve been trying to ignore, unsuccessfully. I haven’t spun seriously for over 25 years but those beautiful yarns did me in. I just ordered a batt and got the spinning wheel out. If I quit my day job I should have enough time to both spin & knit.

  53. I have to admit something. I was given your first book of essays as a Christmas gift from friends a few years ago. I love reading, and I love knitting, but I will admit that I held the book and thought: “Um, I do not read books ‘about’ knitting. How silly. Knitting is fun, but how can I read something ‘about’ knitting?” I was frankly a bit disappointed in the present.
    But, being ever the reader, that book sat on my coffee table for a while, until I picked up up and read a bit. And I liked it. So I read some more, and liked it even better. It made me laugh, it brought a few tears to my eyes, it made me smile.
    Then, I heard you were going to be at WEBS last year. I told my Mum: “We HAVE to go! She’s great!” My Mum felt the same way about going to a knitting lecture as I felt about reading a knitting book. But, she went anyway. She laughed, she enjoyed herself, we had a wonderful time.
    This year when I mentioned your talk, she jumped at the chance. And it was on a weekend! We had plenty of time! We shopped, we lunched, we wandered the town, and we sat and knit together and listened to you.
    And from someone who didn’t want to read a book “about” knitting, to someone who didn’t want to go to a lecture “about” knitting — she took my copy of your book to her cancer appts (she’s long since finished the book, but not the appts). She kept it in a ziplock bag because it was an autographed copy, and told me about the odd looks she got from everyone about keeping a book “about” knitting in a ziplock bag.
    Talk about full-circle, eh?
    Write on. Write on.

  54. If it makes you feel any better I pre-ordered your book May 7th and I rarely plan that far in advance for anything. As far as laughing out loud all of you books have had me in such hysterics that my co-workers began to look at me kinda funny when I read the last book during lunch.

  55. Yeah!
    I can’t wait until it reaches my area, unless I have them ship it to me!
    If I were within hugging distance, I’d go fangirl over you. Honest!

  56. I am just in the process of becoming a stasher (I mean knitter) and I really like your books. I enjoy your “voice”, I enjoy the bits of your philosophy that come through, and I think you are very funny.
    My great-grandfather had a really crass expression for these issues — “the only thing that everyone likes is a s***house”.

  57. If you could add it to your sidebar so we could order it directly via your site so your royalties from the sale would go up… That’s how I’d like to buy it.

  58. I copied the Hubbard quote onto a sticky note. Thank you. I’m about to take on a very public role that may or may not have something to do with Canadian politics and the fear that is gripping me is not the fear that I’m not smart enough or articulate enough or what have you (well, maybe a little) but that people will think these things about me. I’m trying to realize there’s not enough room in my brain for everyone else’s criticism and my own and I can only control one of those elements.

  59. I can’t wait to read this. So, is Hey Teach done to wear on tour? And, do you have some clean pants? Khaki, black and brown and you are set, or skirts in the same colors.

  60. I know comparing one’s book to one’s child is cliche, but the book is YOU the way that your kids are You. Start them off best you can, then let them go and see how they fare…
    Scary indeed. Don’t worry momma. You did good.

  61. Well, I love reading what you write. I love laughing until I cry when I do. I love seeing all the other knitters at your talks and feeling like I am part of a huge community that exists in the real world (and not just the virtual). I love reading your stuff out loud to my husband – even after waking him up, which he loves – and having him go, “You aren’t the only crazy one?” Nope, there’s lots of us. And you really do help some us feel connected. Thanks! : )

  62. Hi! I am so excited you have a new book coming out.
    Only one request. Just one.
    PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE!! Come to DC or Virginia or Maryland on your tour!! PLEASE!!
    I got to see all of the pictures and had to imagine the fun that was had on your last tour. So I am BEGGING you to PLEASE come to the DC metro area!! PLEASE?

  63. Not only did I pre-order, I pre-ordered TWO! That’s how fabulous I think your writing is! Please do a book tour in Florida real soon. Blogless Mary Lou

  64. I was one of those who preordered. Haven’t gotten it yet, but I’ll tell you this. I always find myself nodding my head in agreement at something you say in just about every chapter of what I’ve read of yours. I see myself in what you write. That’s why I keep reading.
    That and the fact you’re funny as hell.

  65. Can’t wait for the book. If you didn’t have to let go of the barfiness, the books wouldn’t be so good. If you didn’t want to let go of the high, you wouldn’t be so decent. You take adoration better than anyone I know, and yes, we don’t “know” you. And you’re no different from anyone else in that regard, even people we know IRL, we don’t “know” really. WYSIWYG I’m so glad you chose writing as a profession and are choosing to blog, I benefit and I know so many others do, too in all of our different ways. I just sent a book review off to my editor (zen center newsletter), so I am waiting for that unpleasant exchange of emails where he will want to correct my grammar and usage (and quash my style, oh, the drama of it) and I may want to argue. Your post today sure takes the edge off of that, thank you. Here’s to the success of this new book, ours now, and I hope my copy comes soon. And if you ever go Down Under, come by way of Hawaii!

  66. Stephanie, I’m a relative newcomer to your blog, and I love the way the blog and your books veer between confidence/trepidation/self-deprecation/glee, all with an oh-so-canadian kind of humour. I’ve read a lot of your archives recently, and I came across a post the other day about how you’d never been on a plane…I’m really struck by how your sense of who you are has expanded since you began it. I admire how much of yourself you put into everything you do, and how you let yourself be so open to expanding. Risky but not reckless. congrats on the book!

  67. Stephanie,
    I love reading your blog, so I’m sure I will love reading your book too (and I’m sure if I ever met and got to know you in person, I’d love you too).
    And this is my favorite style of artwork for the cover.
    Congrats on another book!

  68. I’ve read all your “stuff” Every one has things that move me You are a great writer and your style and subject feed the fiber obsession that I have had for 40 years…..YOU get me!!!!

  69. Ahhh, I love the smell of a new book in the morning.
    What? What’s that? Oh, is that a new book tour I see coming up? Can I request Kansas City? Please?

  70. I have faith–faith in your ability to tap into exactly how I feel about knitting, even when I never slowed down enough to know I felt that way, until I read each of your books. You are the J.K. Rowling of the knitting world. It was not possible for me to be even entertain the idea that I might be disappointed in the Harry Potter books because she connected with me in the very first volume. I know the book is wonderful and I cannot wait for my pre-order to arrive (although I wish we could pay you and have you make lots more money!) Congrats!

  71. Stephanie, I’ve read all your books beginning with Knits End when a friend at knit night read aloud your quotations. We all became instant fans. Then you came to speak to us at Madrona and we fell over laughing at your ability to draw us into your world and see things through your eyes. Keep up the wonderful work and I’ll look forward to keeping company with your blog as you create the next tome.

  72. I think that we say that the author, not the book, bores us to tears because we all know that writing is a very revealing thing to do. It’s like music– you always end up putting more of yourself into it than you think you do.
    But it’ll be lovely. I’m sure.

  73. I think the feeling is the same for everything that you create and then send off into the world without you, whatever it may be.
    I’ve never found anything that can take the edge off the terror, except for moving quickly on to the next thing.
    It’s my birthday today, and I was given two of your books. This in no way makes up for the fact that I couldn’t come and see you in London because I was working (wah! I had First Socks to show you and everything!), but it’s made my birthday a lot nicer. I had cake for breakfast, and refused to get out of bed until I’d finished reading.
    One day I’ll get around to blogging about how knitting has genuinely changed my life. Reading your work has encouraged me to feel as though there are people out there who will understand. Thank you. 🙂

  74. Dearest Stephanie,
    I call you that because today you are my dearest. I’m having a writing-confidence crisis, sitting here loving my first, rewritten six times, ready-to-find-an-agent, novel manuscript and scared spitless at the same time, and you have written the most wonderful, insightful blog post of the year. Thank you so much. I hope you don’t mind that I’ve printed it out to take to my (non-knitting) writing group to share the encouragement and inspiration.
    You keep writing your books and I’ll write mine, inspired by your bravery and sheer stubbornness.

  75. Your words mean a lot to most, pretty amazing. I just ordered your book and can’t wait to read it. Thanks for the courage to do something “scary.”

  76. “I hope you like it. I do.”
    Now that’s true ownership. To stand up and say that you like your book. That more than anything makes me want to buy and read it. It doesn’t matter if I like, others like it, or no one likes it. Because YOU like it, it is everything it needs to be.

  77. As a preacher, I can connect with what you’re saying about the good/bad/liked it/hated it comments. They’re people telling me something about what they thought about what I said, but it sometimes feels like they’re talking about me personally. What I love, though, is when people talk about how my sermon touched them or connected with their daily experiences in life. It means so much more to me then.
    As for your writing, I’ve found that while I don’t “know” you in person, I find that your writing leads me to believe that were we neighbors or went to the same knit night, I’d have a great time talking with you. My partner always laughs at me when I say that I’d like to visit Toronto some day. I want to visit Toronto because the way you write about it makes it seem like an interesting place to be. My husband says it’s because you live there. The two are not unrelated, I think.
    I think we are awfully lucky that you came along, with all your unique gifts and ideas, and I’m thankful for your writing. I’ve not only knit lace because of your writing, but I’m also planning on having a doula and home birth someday because of you, I’ve enjoyed butter tarts because of you, and I’ve learned a bit more about my neighbors to the North. All this, and I’ve had quite a few laughs. I always look forward to your blog and your books.
    Blessings as you re-enter the whirlwind of new bookhood.

  78. Every time I read one of your posts after just finishing a book, it makes me want to write. Something, anything, just to get this kind of connection with the world. It seems awesome (in the old sense of the word). Then again, I am a teacher and during my first year I would get paralyzed by the fear that one of my students might hate me. Also, that some students would say I was a great teacher, even during that first semester when I was a stuttering, babbling mess, when in fact they were just inspired by the subject matter rather than my pedagogical brilliance (or lack thereof). It seems pretty close to what you describe with the book writing. I know some of my students will associate astronomy (or even science classes in general) with me for the rest of their adult lives, and whenever I consider the prospect of ruining science for them forever, I also feel the need to lie down for a bit! This is a roundabout way of saying thanks for sharing the scary parts with us. It makes me feel less alone.

  79. I certainly don’t hat you, Stephanie. 😉
    My hat is off to you, however. Congratulations on having another book of essays out there. I *cannot* wait to read it.

  80. Congratulations on the book. I hear you about the criticism issue. I am a co-leader in an animal rights group (please don’t confuse that with an animal rights terrorist organization – we do not stalk those who do not see things our way – we prefer mediation and legislation). When some of the people in my group think that the steps we are taking aren’t “powerful” enough, that they are too slow, some of them have been known to write nasty emails behind our backs. They even send scathing emails to our Yahoo group. For the first time in my life I’ve learned that it doesn’t matter if they call me names and don’t have any respect for me or my decisions – I don’t hold them in high-regard either. What do I care what someone who I view as “less-enlightened” thinks? I hope for you that you can learn to feel that way, too. You’re a nice, interesting person. Remember that.

  81. This is a really beautiful glimpse into the writer’s soul. Thank you for sharing it.
    You are the reason I picked up needles and knit my first (and second and on my third) sock. You are also the reason I’m braver now about my knitting – picking patterns I thought were “too hard” and knitting in public and learning as I go – on the “good” yarn. (Because yarn is reusable, right?) So thank you for that, too. I am incredibly grateful that you continue to put yourself out there.

  82. I discovered your books one week ago and I’m currently reading my 4th… and I really enjoy them. You made me laugh, think (that’s great), and even almost cry with the little blue sock story. I read when I’m nursing since my baby boy is now trying to help me with the knitting…
    I’m excited to know there is more coming, so I hope you’ll continue for a long time, and thank you !

  83. Congratulations!!! I know you have lots of folks out there that love your books and your humorous writing. Enjoy the praise and just don’t pay any attention to those jackarses that don’t like it!! 🙂

  84. *sniff*
    This blog post is a thing of true beauty.
    (I know, this sounds a bit too much but bear with me.)
    I’ve read three of your books so far but I find myself often telling my (non-knitting) husband, “Yeah, that’s exactly what the yarn harlot talked about when …” to explain how life works. Or at least parts of it.

  85. Stephanie,
    Congratulations on your new book. I’m positive it will be just as wonderful as your other ones.
    You have inspired me with your books and your blog. I just finished reading Knitting Rules, and decided to be more adventuresome in my knitting. Then I read your last blog, and decided I *could* learn to knit lace. I spent the weekend with some directions, a ball of yarn, and size 9 circular knitting needles, and today I feel confident to knit lace. Woo-hoo!! It is all because of you. Thanks!

  86. Oh good! A new book. My wallet is also a book carrier, and I’ve nearly worn out your last book. I carry it in my purse and pull it out and read it at odd moments when I’m in a funk. It always makes me smile.
    So, thanks in advance.

  87. Well, Stephanie, I’ve had your book and Franklin’s book on preorder at Amazon, plus another one, and I can’t wait until they arrive! Had ’em shipped to my office.
    Go have some really good wine, some really good chocolate, and buy yourself some really nice yarn – you deserve it all! And please consider coming back to Philadelphia sometime soon.

  88. Wow! Bravo! I’ve pre-ordered, and I’m not worried about it; I *know* I’ll like it! I have all your others, and the 2009 calendar, too.
    I also understand how you feel (a wee bit). I had an essay published in Lela Nargi’s “Knitting Through It”, which came out in March, and couldn’t quite believe my eyes when I saw it. I also just had an art quilt accepted into a juried exhibition, set to tour Canada between October of this year, and the spring of 2010…and now I actually have to prepare it for hanging and send it off to the exhibitors — *put it out there* — like sending your first child off to school, first year, first day…
    I just say, “Keep on keepin’ on, Steph! You brighten our days.”
    P.S. When are the audio books going to come out? 😉

  89. I completely understand the fear & angst you’re experiencing. But, speaking as someone who read the Wedding Sweater saga aloud to a non-knitter last weekend (a non-knitter who choked herself laughing and couldn’t keep her exclamations to herself)… well, I think you can view it as an activity you’re compelled to perform that has no connection to reality whatsoever.
    Looking forward to the new book.

  90. I have the book “preordered” and hope it comes before my knitting retreat this weekend!!
    The favorite thing(and boy could I identify with it) was when you wrote about the sweater you had toiled on forever and you laid it on the bed to admire. Then Joe (who has never done laundry) for some ungodly reason decides to do a load-including the wool beauty on the bed!! I have a husband just like that. Whenever he says to me “hey honey, I thought you might enjoy a little help so I ……” I shiver and think of the sweater! Another favorite is your quest for the missing blue aluminum dp in the car. Joe is waiting to go somewhere and you refuse to leave until the “favorite” dp is found. I could hear the wheels turning in Joe’s head—the same wheels that turn in Dan’s as I hold up forward progress looking for a needle,a chart,a pattern, or just the right project to knit in the car.
    He’s saying to himself “women, can’t live with them and can’t live without them”–my wheels are saying “if I had shot him 30 years ago –I’d be out now!”. Kidding of course !!
    Keep writing and we will keep reading. Everthing you write may not appeal to all of us all of the time but we keep reading because you are one of us and we know you by heart.

  91. I first picked up Yarn Harlot in a semi-local yarn store. Thumbed through, thought it looked good/interesting/hilarious, bought it. I had been knitting about 2 months. And, yes, I enjoyed the book.
    BUT, it had 2 profound moments for me. The first was reading of the baby socks for the baby who wouldn’t be. I have a granddaughter who only lived 10 days. The NICU care she and her whole extended family received was beyond wonderful—this essay reminded me of the goodness of people.
    The second moment was when I turned a page and realized that I had absorbed through the book to that point, that there WAS a knitting community. My 2 closest yarn stores aren’t enjoyable and I rarely go there. In my 2 months of knitting, I’d been to several stores, looking for patterns, books, help, yarn, needles, and had found a couple that were warm and welcoming and happy to see me (and take my money—why are rude store owners not even happy when they take your money?), but I had never realized that there was a knitting community.
    So, thank you, for those particular moments. I have since read all of your blog entries, books, heard you speak a couple of times, seen you from afar at a couple of events. I value your efforts and time and ability to convey the life of knitting/knitters and life in general to all of us.
    Congrats on your new book….my copy should arrive soon.

  92. I think it is fantastic that we have another book to read by Stephanie Pearl McPhee.
    I am one of those people who first met you through Knitting Rules…. I felt for the first time in a long time like I had come home. I immediately went out and bought all your previous books, the ones that have come after and the Audio versions from I live in Florida where the fiberartist is a scarce commodity. I live with people who think I am one step away from being committed because of my love for Knitting, my stash, my needle collections, my books and patterns. And anytime their negative input starts to get to me, I whip out one of your books and emerge myself into the world where my mindset is not the oddity but the rule. I also look forward to your blog entries, you have a gift for making the mundane funny and interesting.
    So you are correct, most of us don’t “Know” you, but because you are brave enough to put yourself and your writing on the line day after day, you have enriched more lives than you will ever know. But since I can only speak for myself, I will have to say I thank you. I thank you for sharing your gift of humor, your honesty in showing the mistakes as well as the sucesses, and reminding us that as individuals we have a voice and as a group we have a roar.

  93. As a fellow writer, I totally understand what you are saying here. Once the book or story is published, it no longer wholly belongs to you, but to the world. Some people in the world are going to mistreat it, abuse it, misunderstand it, but that is okay. Those people just aren’t its intended audience. The people who enjoy it, understand it and “get” what it is about, truly, then they are the intended audience. Once I realized this, then letting that story or book or out on its own hasn’t been so hard. Not everyone will get it and that is okay.

  94. I was just looking at Knitting Rules last night to refresh my memory on Kitchener stitch (yet again) and was wondering when your new book was coming out! I’m looking forward to reading it and wishing you all the wonderful reviews and feedback an author could desire.

  95. I don’t even knit but I read your books and post daily because I’m a mom of a teenager, have a writer/editor husband, a Mrs. Washie, love fiber arts and use your blog to make my knitting friends make things for me.
    I tell total strangers in train stations and airports, in 3 countries, all about your books and blog, just because I see them knitting. Parenting and writing – oh yeah – hardest stuff in the world. They both take imagination, fantasy, work and guts. Knit on. Write on.

  96. I love your books and they mean something to me. The way you view certain things is the very same way I view certain things and I feel a kinship to you through your writing, although I will never know the real you. There is a lot of you in those writings and I think that the writing (and knitting) you produce is brilliant. Were it not for you I would still be exclusively crocheting and I would certainly never have found a circle of girls (and boys) that meet once a week to stitch, sip, laugh, cry, love , share joy and suffer pain with.
    I have NOT preordered your book. I fully intend to walk into my local book store and purchase it right off the shelves at suggested Canadian retail from them.
    Don’t let it ruin your sleep. Those who love the idea they have of you will continue to love it, regardless of the brilliance or dimness of the book. Measure your success by the smiles of your friends.

  97. Dear, Stephanie, I have every one of your books and I’ve read them over and over, at least 4 or 5 times each. I treasure each one of them and I will treasure this new one just as surely as I do the others. I can hardly wait until I get my own copy!
    Your books STILL make me laugh out loud. But you know why I REALLY like them? Because they DO tell your readers *who you are* (at least a little bit): that you are EveryWoman. Your books tell us that we are acceptable. They tell me that you’re “just like” me (well, you know what I mean). You’re also “just like” my beloved sister. You’re “just like” my dear friend across the street – and “just like” the one who lives 1000 miles away from me. You’re “just like” so many of us. Fame has not changed you – you’re still YOU: the totally funny, engaging, NORMAL WOMAN, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, who knits and spins and lives out her life in ordinary ways. You understand us … because *you’re* living much the same life WE are. You have so many of the same hurts, joys, fears, worries, anxieties, triumphs, “eureka moments”, sweet memories … that the rest of us have (barring details, of course). Your books – and you, by extension – make us realize that YOU UNDERSTAND US! And who can resist loving a person who understands us?? *I* sure can’t. We feel that if you knew each of us personally, you’d probably be our friend, would probably love (and how little love there is in the world today – we’re all so hungry for it!) and appreciate us for who we are. We can relate to you *because* you can relate to us. We can imagine you as our very best friend and trusted confidant; as someone who would ‘get it’ if we told her the secrets of our heart.
    I’m sure I’m not saying this very well…but I hope what I’ve said helps? We love and appreciate you because (and this is humanly selfish, of course) you seem to love and appreciate US for who we are. We don’t love you merely because you are the famous, the one-and-only, “The Yarn Harlot”, but because you are *our* Stephanie (lol – hope that bit of ‘public ownership’ doesn’t scare you too badly!) – a truly lovely little lady who can bright a total stranger’s whole day, just with her wide, sweet, beautiful, accepting and happy smile.
    Thanks to your example, I got brave enough to learn to spin – all by myself! I love it now – it’s my ruling passion. Thanks to YOU, dear woman. PLEASE keep writing – whatever you see fit to write, I will read. I will read it gratefully, whether I agree with everything written, or not. That isn’t what matters. What matters to me is that you took the time to write – making yourself completely vulnerable to total strangers (scary!) – and that took major, major guts. Kudos to you, Stephanie – my dpns are held up in a respectful salute to you – and your bravery.
    God bless and keep you!

  98. Just for the record, I laugh several times, every chapter, when reading yours books. I have laughed to the point of crying, at which point my boyfriend had to take the book away from me so I could calm down and remember how to breath. I regularly read parts of them to my boyfriend, who proceeds to fall out of his chair laughing. We definitely hear you.

  99. LOVE the “best-selling author…” under your name on the cover. Well done. Well-deserved. Can’t wait to read it.

  100. I’m an architect. I simultaneously love and hate when a building is finished. It is such a relief to see the results of your hard work in front of you. And it can be fascinating to walk around the building and listen to the comments that people make as they walk around it for the first time. But any overheard negative comment is like a dagger to the heart…even though I know it isn’t “me” that they are criticizing, it doesn’t make it sting any less…
    I’m ready to stalk my mailbox at the end of the month for your book. I’ll probably stop playing with yarn while I read it from cover to cover since that’s what I’ve done with each one of your previous books. 🙂

  101. I remember the first time I was able to write something that a reader shed tears over. It was a really powerful feeling.
    But then I found out that it’s MUCH more difficult to make someone laugh out loud. And I liked doing that better.
    I love the cover, and I’m really thrilled that it seems to be a smidge longer than the others. (My husband laughs at me constantly for always reading snippets of your books during the few minutes when I’m waiting for him to get done with the shower at night.)
    Even though I don’t know you, I sure do love and appreciate your work!

  102. Stephanie
    I can say this with certainty – Your books make me laugh out loud (more than once or twice per chapter); they give me “aha!” moments; they make me aware that there are others out there who are like me; and they make connections. I know that because your books make my almost 90-year-old knitting grandmother laugh out loud too.

  103. You know you’re among friends here, and we all love you, or we wouldn’t be here. There’s probably nothing I can say that will make you feel any differently or suffer any less when confronting your inner 16-year-old (because, Honey, I have one, too), but I’ll tell you what I tell my kids: There are going to be people who love you, for reasons that have nothing to do with you, and there are going to be people who hate you, for reasons that have nothing to do with you, and you have to find a way to disregard them both. Congratulations on another stellar accomplishment! I have no doubt I will love it, as I have all your previous books. (Would it make you feel any better if I told you I have a degree in literature from Harvard?)

  104. Congratulations. And thank you for a well-written post–your thoughts apply to so many other situations. I often think of my disproportionate anger when someone objects to something I’ve said when I’ve actually modified my true feelings to make them happy. I know that the things I say or do or just am will please some people at lot, and the very same things will anger others. Might as well be in trouble for what I believe. The only existential possibility is honesty, and that’s dangerous–but thrilling, too. And really the only possible response to the world. I appreciate your honesty!

  105. I’ve enjoyed your work so much over the years. Both the books and the blog. You are a wonderful writer and do the best job finding the humorous element in moments that may not always seem humorous.
    I’ve quoted bits from your essay your wrote on your daughter’s birthday (the part about her qualities that were frustrating to parent were the qualities that would make her a successful adult) and retold many stories you have shared in your books and blog postings. There are many quotable (and hilarious) moments.
    I tell people all the time that while the subject matter is knitting, you are a brilliant humorist writer and it is just a matter of time that we get to see something about parenting, home improvement, relationships, or squirrel husbandry. (fingers crossed!)
    I’ve had the privilege of taking a class from you at sock camp and I feel pretty confident that I can say I like you in addition to your work.
    Even if you do put your glasses the wrong side up in the cupboard (keep changing them Joe!). 😛

  106. You were heard you more than once, elicited more than one loud laugh, and helped make me feel less alone as an obsessed knitter. Happy days to you and yours.

  107. Chin up! If your new book baby is half as good as your blog it will be fantastic! Remind that inner 16 year old what a fantastic woman she will become and have a big glass of wine and toast your success!

  108. I’m one of those people who owns, reads, and loves all of your books (so far. I’m sure I’ll feel the same about this one!)
    If it makes you more comfortable, I won’t say that I love you (although I do). After all, I’ve only listened to you live and in person for about an hour and a half, whatever brief amount of time they gave you in Philadelphia, and then got to burble incoherently at you for about sixty seconds at the book signing table. From that brief encounter, I’m fairly sure you’re a warm, fun-loving person. To really “know” you, I think we’d have to have a longer acquaintance, but I’m pretty sure I’d like you if I got to know you better personally.

  109. Congratulations on the new book. If your wonderfully intimate post on it is any indication, I can’t wait to read your essays. I can say that each of your books I’ve read has taught me something (about knitting or myself), touched me in some way (I am a sensitive soul) and usually makes me laugh continuously. Thank you for sharing yourself with me.

  110. I haven’t read your new book yet, but I have read everything else, and I think you are a funny yet insightful writer. Yes, you make me laugh – often – but what I love most about you is that you make me think and wonder.
    Write on, with confidence and hope, through all crises. (a play on EZ)!

  111. Congratulations on finishing the last book, Steph, and on getting published. That alone puts you in an elite group, and you should be glowing with pride. We toast you!
    I look forward to reading it, as do thousands of others. You can’t please EVERYONE…and what a boring world it would be if you could!!!

  112. Sock camp? Apparently I have not been keeping up well enough. I have never heard of sock camp 🙂 Of course, I don’t actually knit any more – am I allowed to say that on this blog? – mostly I read because my mom makes me… no … uh… cuz I enjoy the writing about writing (which is the stuff my mom emails me about when you post it)
    Congratulations on your accomplishment … love the description of your reaction to the physical book’s arrival – suspect I might have occasion to use that at some point in my studies, if you don’t mind?

  113. I think you could write a book about how every author must feel after sending a new book into the wild.
    I don’t know about anyone else, but, myself, the whole “knitting” thing is different than every hobby I’ve ever had. It’s more fun. I have friends that I didn’t have before. I’m learning new techniques and experiencing new things every day. And – I can honestly say it is because of you. Absolutely – you.
    Even if I don’t love the “real” you for making my life better, I sure love someone pretty close to it. 🙂

  114. I think because you share so many of what I feel are your personal moments here (birthdays, triumphs, tribulations, losses, etc.) – we all feel that we do know you and therefore feel that we love you. Reading your blog is like receiving a letter from an old friend. There are days when you don’t post that I’ll look up an old post just to “hear from you”. And I can’t tell you how dog-eared my copies of your books are, because I read them over and over. And when I saw you in person? I don’t think I could have been more excited.
    So while it is perhaps not the same love that Ken or Lene (your “real” friends) have for you, there is love here. 🙂

  115. I’m so excited to read this book, no matter what you say! I’ve seen you speak in person, so I can truly say that I love both your personality and your writing…and just think of how many people read your books and your blog. If you were really terrible, no one would bother! But as a writer myself, I understand the fear of being rejected and hated by your reader. Just know that so many of us truly love your work and look forward to reading your books!

  116. Congratulations, Steph. I can’t believe you still have those doubts that we love your books when we’ve proven it time and time again by putting our money down. Isn’t that the ultimate vote? The fact that we come here and read you free blog and then pay for more? I think it is. Every little royalty penny says “we love you, Yarn Harlot.”

  117. (I just had this panic that by saying “real” friends, someone would think I was putting Ken or Lene or you down — and by all means, I’m not. I meant as opposed to those of us who are far flung, and far removed, from you but still feel the love.) (I’ve probably overworked myself on this. Shutting up.)

  118. This is the second time I have commented. I don’t knit. I doubt I ever will. I don’t have the brain for it. I do, however, see the art in it, and the love, thought, and creativity that goes into any piece of art, which I think knitting can be.
    I read your books because of a friend who is a knitter. She introduced me to your writing because of the incredible talent you have. I pre-ordered your book and I am looking forward to reading it before I give it to my friend.
    Someday, I hope to meet you. You have inspired me with your books and your blog. You have made me laugh out loud, feel emotions richly…and that is truly a miracle.
    Thank you so much for being brave enough to put yourself out there: you, your words, your essence…in print and in public.
    Your work is a gift. Thank you for sharing it.

  119. Congratulations! I can’t wait to pick it up at the bookstore when it becomes available.
    I assume there will be another book tour? I’m hoping you’ll make it to Connecticut.
    By the way, I always learn something from your books…and spend a good amount of time laughing out loud. Thank you for your willingness to share of yourself.

  120. I look forward to reading your new book … since I’ve only read your blog, which I thoroughly enjoy, by the by … I also ordered Yarn Harlot when I pre-ordered Free-Range Knitter … I have this thing about reading books in sequence. In any case I look forward to a weekend of reading all about knitting and other stuff … it’ll be a prelude to my very first knitting class which starts in October.

  121. “It wasn’t as funny as it could have been”? How in the world is she/he supposed to know how funny it could have been? She must be able to read your mind and see funnier stories there that you left out of the book….

  122. I have only read one of your books, the Yarn Harlot. As soon as I did I found your blog (I was looking). I like that you are open and vulnerable in your writing Stephanie. That is how I feel close to you, like I know you, like you are my friend. Thank you for being so brave.
    I haven’t preordered, but next time I talk to my family and they ask me what I really want for Christmas, I’ll have the perfect answer. 🙂

  123. Having written a (far less interesting than yours) book myself, I can only liken it to getting a large tattoo – the process is painful enough that you can’t imagine there will come a time when you don’t think about it for days or even weeks. It simply becomes one more part – and not even the biggest part – of who you are.
    You’re right at that in-between point where you are separating yourself from your work. Some creatures literally have to shed their skins or shells in order to grow, and they’re vulnerable at first. Be gentle with yourself and trust that you are going to have a new perspective on it soon. And that it’s ok to feel proud of something you’ve done… pride only goes before a fall when there’s nothing to hold it up. Celebrate!
    Oh, and don’t bother tracking the sales rank on Amazon – even Amazon doesn’t know what it means :-).

  124. Stephanie,
    I have pre-ordered your book (of course). I love reading about your angst….you poke such wonderful fun at yourself…about feelings that we _all_ have. And it’s much more fun to laugh at those fears and frustrations than cry!
    I love your books because you are continually hitting the point of things, and make me think…in between making me laugh, and sometimes both at once. What could be better than that?
    I’m sorry you are fretting about the quality and the reactions people have, but I suspect that part of you being such a great writer, if you didn’t your work wouldn’t speak to so many people. And, of course, you amuse us by showing us ourselves in you, again, while describing it!
    Thank you, Stephanie, your writing helps.

  125. Congratulations Stephanie! I look forward to reading this one-I think I like your essays best of all. You are a wonderful writer. I was very moved by the essay about knitting the baby sock for your client that had a stillbirth. And when I read At Knit’s End in bed at night, I kept elbowing my husband and reading him pages from it–he laughed too although he’s not a knitter. Although I know it’s scary for you to put yourself out on the line the way you do, I hope that you’ll keep doing it. 🙂

  126. I’m certain that you’ve done a great job. Can’t wait to get it and read it to my husband at night. He likes me to read “something funny” to him as he falls asleep (no reflection on you, he does that to all books, even mine) and then I’m free to enjoy the book by myself until, say, 3am.
    If you really want a second opinion, I’d be happy to receive a copy and give you a rave review. 😉

  127. Fantastic – another Harlot book! I am excited to get one, and to find you on tour (I hope – Raleigh, NC, area would be good!) to see you again.
    I know it’s hard, especially for a shy person, to take the risk of ‘going public’ with a book. But please know that I, too, really love your work and I like You. I don’t know your favorite breakfast or the book you can’t stand. But I know you are hard-working, family-oriented, realistic and optimistic. You strive for joy and peace, you celebrate success in others and laugh at your own defeats (after much swearing, wine and chocolate, but still.) And you stand up for what you believe in and for the rights of others to do the same. Those are characteristics I covet and strive for and only your willingness to be a public figure allows all of us to see those things in you.
    So breathe in the gratitude and support of the multitude of us. We luv you, man! (And with regard to the stress of what criticisms may come… Stet, please.)

  128. I hear you! Congratulations on another book in print, and remember–someone had to think it was worthwhile if they killed the trees to get it out there.
    I have that same oh-my-gawd-what-was-I-thinking feeling every time I send a piece of my writing off to friends and family (who knew me before my writing), and I don’t know if it’s good to know the loop of emotion following the completion of a work is something even real writers feel, or if knowing that just makes the whole process even scarier.
    But thanks for giving us all something to read and mull over : )

  129. Stephanie, congratulations on the new book! I think this book any other book you write is like giving birth to a part of yourself. And everyone is going to welcome your baby with open arms!

  130. In the interest of providing balance allow me to be of assistance. Stephanie, you are right, we do not love you. It is only THE BOOK. You do not make us want to be better friends, better parents, better knitters. You do not cause us to pause and consider how we are impacting our environment and if we should engage in heater wars or go vegetarian. You do not inspire us to be kinder, donate more, and be more frugal, be more generous. It is not because of you that we yearn to knit socks, block laceweight, and learn to spin. It is simply the trickery of THE BOOK that lures us into stalking your blog and following you around/begging you to speak in our town. We are all under the spell of THE BOOK and you are extraneous. Nothin’ to love but THE BOOK.
    p.s. Excuse me while I laugh my @ss off because all of the above is pure b.s. But I get your point; some may not like what you write. Some may not like you. That’s the breaks. Rest assured however that I’m a fan. Without you, I wouldn’t be learning to purl.
    p.p.s. Any chance the current wonder publicist can schedule you to come to Tulsa?
    p.p.p.s. Rams might be right (again).

  131. If I were to meet you that is what I would love to say – “I heard you.” I think you are incredibly brave for putting yourself out there again and again by writing such heartfelt material. I am kind of a lonely knitter (no knitting friends) and reading your stories has made me feel as if I am part of the knitting community. Your stories have made me feel connected, laugh out loud, cry a bit, and made me realize that I have knitterly habits I didn’t even know I had (such as fondling somebody’s sweater). I appreciate it all so very much.

  132. I think, for those of us who have read your blog for years, that when we say “I love your book”, it means more than that. How can it not, when you write things as deeply moving and beautifully honest as what you wrote today?
    Because the book is part of you, when people tell you they loved your book, it must mean that there’s part of you they love. Not the whole of you–but the part of you that is the book. The part of you that gave birth to it, that loves it, and that makes it what it is.
    I have an alternate view on the book vs. Stephanie dichotomy. It goes to the very root of love and hate–the fact that love (or at least appreciation) comes out of understanding, and hate out of a lack thereof.
    You yourself said that making a connection with others is your highest goal as a writer–it’s what makes all of the stress & nausea, the euphoric highs and abysmal lows, worth it. It’s that connection, or lack thereof that often determine a person’s reaction to your work. People who have had similar experiences as you have had will enjoy your work . . . those who haven’t probably won’t. (And remember–all generalizations are false. ;o)
    Instead of fighting to distance yourself so much from the whole scenario, it seems that chalking up negative reviews to the reviewers simply not understanding what the work is about, or living in such a completely different paradigm that they can’t relate to what you’ve said, would be far easier to accommodate. (At least, it would be for me. I’ve never had a book published on that scale, but I have written things for public consumption, and am a performer–so I understand on some level where you’re coming from, and the sting of negative reviews.)
    So, with that offered in a hopeful and helpful spirit, (albeit a slightly muddled one, as the children are on a rampage today), when are you coming to the Portland area? I want to know when I get to buy a copy of your new book. ;o)

  133. Stephanie – My husband (a Canuck) is travelling with our son to visit grandparents in Belleville (ON) from New Zealand in October and he is on strict instructions to go to Lettuce Knits and look for an autographed copy of ANY of your books! I think you rock and can’t wait to read your latest offering.
    And I think its so cool that women gather in places like this to support you and each other. Love that estrogen!

  134. as a podcaster, i totally get what you’re saying. putting yourself out there is hard, because no matter what, when you talk about yourself and your experiences it’s a gamble. if people like it, then fantastic. if they don’t, it hurts…it hurts because it’s you.
    all i can hope is that the people that don’t like it keep their mouth shut, and the people that love it don’t stop telling you how wonderful you are.
    ((HUGS)) to you on your new journey. based on all your prior writing, and your daily writing, and you being you, i bet this one will be another winner. 🙂

  135. Yay for new books! I will love this one as much as – nay, even more than – the last or the ones before, because it’s new you, and I love you! Well, maybe not YOU you, OK well, yes, YOU you, but I know you know what I mean.

  136. Oh yes, I heard you. And I felt you. And I love that you are where you are doing what you do because it makes my life richer.
    Now, where’s the gansey?

  137. You know…when you write, there is no way NOT to put a little of yourself into it, unless you are doing strictly scientific papers where putting anything other than data in is a terrible sin.
    We do it, when we comment. You do it when you post, when you write, when you speak.
    And so that you know? My starting to knit, starting with SOCKS of all things, is ALL YOUR FAULT.
    And it wasn’t THE BOOK, either. It was YOU. Your blog, your writing, the fact that I was utterly engaged and wanted to see if “I can do that” was as silly as it sounded.
    It wasn’t. And it’s STILL all your fault. 🙂 Because now I’m spinning to knit, knitting whatever comes to hand, and yet…I’m not addicted like many knitfolks. It’s just a thing to do with my hands–so far.
    (I really hope it stays that way because I don’t know how on EARTH I will ever manage to knit anything from start to finish, and if I do, I suspect it will be much like you and your book-response.)

  138. I think making people laugh twice per chapter is very, very good too.
    I love your humor because it doesn’t make fun of other people (except yourself), and you don’t use offensive language (except the word arse, which isn’t very offensive). Not many people can be gentle and kind and still be very funny. But you can.

  139. I write for a living. I write software documentation, aka online help. Absolutely no one ever tells me that my online help made them laugh or cry, nor does anyone ever tell me that they love it or hate it. I write about securities-trading software, which, let’s face it, is dull as dishwater, but it keeps me off the street. (For now. Several of my employer’s co-vendors/customers are going down for the third time.) People do tell me that my help is incomplete and I should add something, or incorrect and I should change something, or includes outdated information that I should remove. I write steppe. You write towering mountains and fertile valleys, and if there are cold winds blowing at the peaks, there are cherry trees growing in the valleys. I wish I could write like you. No, not the kind of stuff you write, that I could do, sort of, but the way you write it.
    I do know you, a little, and I like the stuff you write, and I also like you, Stephanie, the human being. So there. And you have inspired me: I recently reread your crochet essay in _Yarn Harlot_, and am perversely itching to crochet something. This is probably not what you had in mind.

  140. Delivery estimate: February 29, 2008 – October 2, 2008
    I’ve been waiting patiently (not really!) since February, I can wait another week or so now. Your books have always been ones that I devour in one sitting, and then come back again and again to dip into.
    I have lace-weight yarn because of you. (I haven’t knit any yet, but I guess that’s coming). I have sock yarn because of you. (I haven’t knit any yet either, but I’m getting there too.)
    The best thing I have from your books is this – it doesn’t have to be my job, and I can still revel in the knowledge and skills I get from knitting. (You also have my undying gratitude for actively giving respect to those of us who knit washcloths)

  141. As a fellow writer (food writer/magazines) I can deeply sympathize with your plight. At least you managed to get your book down on paper. Mine won’t get out of my brain. 🙂 Congrats and I look forward to reading it soon.

  142. I love that there are so many sides to you that you open up to others..your blog..your books..
    You’re so brave! I wish I were like you! I really really do!
    Aside from that…I hate you immensely for knitting so well, for laughing so hard and writing so great! I’m allowed to hate’s in the rules…wonderful people are to be despised!
    So there..I love you! I hate you! Happy now;)

  143. Bless you for being so open and honest about what it is like for you, the writer. I’ll never take a book so lightly again.

  144. Thank you for sharing those feelings with us. I have felt that way with things I have written, and none of them has been anywhere near as “out there for everyone to see and read” as a book. Your books have touched me, and have made me laugh. Thank you.

  145. I recently listened to the author of the 7 habits of the philosopher queen at an occupational therapy meeting. She did a great job of reminding all of us that people’s opinion of something that does not change how great or terrible that thing is. If someone insults or praises something you do, it doesn’t make you a better or worse person.
    Thank you for reminding me of this message. I often have to tell myself this at work. Just because someone agrees or disagrees with me doesn’t change the value of what I have to say.

  146. But for the record. I love your writing, and I think it’s special and awesome. Thank you for writing and giving us your words. It makes the world a better place.

  147. A great shame the labour pains are so terrible and long-lasting…but I’m already smiling just thinking about reading yet another of your progeny. Thanks for this work that you do!

  148. I’ve loved each and every one of your books, Steph, and I’m quite confident I’ll love this one too. I hear you!

  149. Add me to the list of ardent admirers – I am waiting to purchase and read this book either at a signing, or at my LYS, to be supportive (since I am on a destashing mission at present). You make me laugh often and out loud (in bed no less, which then has to be explained to the awakened DH). You make me think hard about some things, and get frequent nods of agreement in a been-there, done-that fashion like old friends do. Please keep this up and don’t be so hard on yourself – take that inner-voice out for a little walk and a look in the mirror, for you have grown up into an amazing woman, one your daughters will be proud to emulate as they too make that same journey. And hug your own mum for having done such a good job !! Now, how soon will you be at Webs again – I am ready for a good gathering of kindred spirits.

  150. Looking forward to this latest book and how cool is it to have read about your time in the woods and snow working on it?
    Reading that gave me the courage to spend some time alone at our summer place on Cape Cod to work through some personal stuff and now I feel I can face time there off season to do more of the same.
    Happy Book Day!

  151. oh yay! I’m looking forward to reading it precisely b/c I’m pretty darned positive that I’ll connect with it 🙂 Congrats!

  152. You said it better than I could: “I heard you.” Each one of your books makes the connection you described. I laugh, I learn, and I even cry (I sobbed while reading the essay in which your friend was giving away her stash because she could no longer knit). I thoroughly enjoy reading your books and can’t wait for the new one to arrive.

  153. Well, I don’t feel qualified to analyze anything but the cover, which is quite darling. The title reminds me of Free Range Chicken, which is very healthy. I’m sure that this book will provide a healthy dose of witty commentary…something that truly is good for the soul.

  154. Pretty freaking scary, this writing life. You survive ok because you keeping bringing out new books. That’s a great show of strength in the face of terror.
    Can’t wait to read it.

  155. I am going to exercise enormous self control and I’m not going to order this book (It’s killing me. Delayed gratification has never been my forte). I’m holding off until I arrive in the States and in the hope that I might be able to get a signed copy. Are there any new bookbookbookbookbookbook tour dates we should know about?
    ps. hearing you loud and clear!

  156. I picked up “At Knits End” when I picked up my first skein of sock yarn and yarn for my first real project in knitting since high school. I laughed and laughed at that book. I wished that I could be like you (although I realized that wishing for an uncontrollable stash was a bit odd). Suffice it to say, I believe you are a great asset to the knitting world.
    I try to look at my knitting the Ann LaMott looks at writing–those socks I made–terrible but I put it in the category of “shitty first drafts.” I’m willing to try, try again and your humor helps motivate me. Thanks.
    P.S. I’ve enjoyed your other books too but “At Knits End” is my absolute fovorite!

  157. Well firstly a confession, I so far only have one of your books (I did try with this one at the I Knit show but was thwarted by wayward publishers). Problem I have is that there are SO MANY BOOKS I want, and so little cash to throw about just now. However, the new one is on my list for post-payday treats, and the greatest compliment I can pay in advance is that I WON’T be reading it on the train. Because that gigglesnorting thing is just. so. embarrassing. when you do it in public. I think you put a lot of yourself into your books (or you’re a damn fine actor) so we all kind of look on you as a friend, which is probably kinda weird for you 🙂 I think so many of us have “connected” with something, even if its only one thing, on the blog or in the books. I know I have, when I read something and say “Thank you God. It’s not just me.” And you’ve given a lot of us something else too – a whole community of knitters to talk to and sometimes even meet in person, through signings, comments and links. Wow. That’s a pretty neat achievement. Carry on 😉

  158. Your books comprised the bulk of my holiday wish list, two years running, and all my non-knitting (read: WIERD) friends/family think I’m a little strange. “NO patterns?!” But the most profound thing I have read which you have written was ‘there are no knitting police’. That, and that the ultimate solution to a knitting project that isn’t going well is to turn it back into a skein of yarn. As a relatively new knitter (5 years), I have stopped viewing a mistake as a failure, but rather as a learning curve that I will use the next time I knit this item (even if I haven’t gotten further than FIVE INCHES IN A WEEK). Thank you. I can’t wait to read your newest book.

  159. Really amazing post–one of the best I’ve read of yours in reading this blog for years. I connected with it very much. I look forward to the new book as I have to all of them.

  160. My sincerest congratulations on your new book!! I hope to see you at sock camp this year so you can sign it. :o) I have no doubt I will enjoy it as much or even more than your other books. I laugh throughout them. I turn to them when I’m having a super sucky day because I know I can’t count on them to lighten my mood and brighten my day. I seem to be having more of those lately. Seriously. I’m not just saying that to puff up your ego and to help balance negative criticism. Great job!

  161. I don’t often comment, but after such a post…the first book of yours I read was the Secret Life of a Knitter, and it made me laugh, and cry. All of your books that I’ve had the chance to read, I feel that connection. It seems like those are my thoughts and feelings on the pages in front of me! Keep it up, because I’m sure I’m not the only one.

  162. One of the things I like about your books is spotting stuff I read about in the blog. As for the writing in itself, I not only re-read the books, I just got finished re-reading the blog.
    If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, re-reading has to be second best.

  163. Congratulations, Stephanie. I can think of no greater pleasure than seeing your hard work developed into the printed page. I look forward to reading it soon!

  164. I understand you too well. I am a university instructor and we do evaluations at the end of each term. In the same stack of evaluations, students have said, “She’s the best teacher I’ve ever had. She explains difficult concepts so clearly and makes me interested in a topic that I wasn’t interested in before.” and others who have said, “She is awful. I can’t believe she is allowed to teach here. I also can’t believe I wasted my money taking a class from her.” I usually don’t read the evaluations until summer – and with a glass of wine. You basically have to use your own judgement to know how well you did, although I have certainly enjoyed your books. I read them more than once. They’re that enjoyable. But I understand your trepidation.

  165. I love the title, and I’m sure I’ll love the book. Congrats! You are a hard-working gal, and deserve the accolades of your peers : )

  166. It’s hard, isn’t it? To put part of yourself out there, and be judged, whether you want to be judged or not.
    No matter what you do to make a living, you are putting yourself out there. Your work, and therefore your character, will be judged. There is nothing you can do about that, except be certain it’s the best work you are capable of. At that moment, with the knowledge you have.
    I go through the same thing every time I publish financial statements (so I go through this monthly – people make expensive and irrevocable decisions based on my work).
    I mean this so much it bears repeating: you can only do your best.
    While I don’t know you at all, I admire the parts of yourself you present to the world through your books and your blog. You are a far braver woman than I. And from all appearances, a very fine person.
    I will buy your book. And I know that parts of it will make me laugh, and parts of it will make me cry. Also, parts of it will make me wonder what on earth you were thinking when you wrote that bit. But, regardless, it will be dollars well spent. It’s a book. Be proud. You shared more of yourself with a book than a set of financial statements ever will.

  167. That whole thing about being scared about putting yourself out there for others to criticize? I totally get that. Last winter I was elected to the county board of supervisors in this very rural county in northwestern Wisconsin. (I was unopposed for this seat, so I cannot take a lot of pride in having been elected.) We just have to do our best. That’s all we can do.
    But it is still darned scary.

  168. Your work gives me pleasure, and encourages me that someday, I, too, could be a Knitter.
    Thank you. Thank you for the blood and sweat and tears and for the breaking through writer’s block, and for slogging through the snow and for being alone in the dark while you put together these new words that I feel sure will bring me pleasure. Thank you.

  169. I read your blog. I read your books. And several times – quite frequently, in fact, I have been known to go ‘YES!’, out loud, with vigour, because of something you have said. Add the snorts and chuckles, and it’s embarassing enough that I now make sure I am alone when I do either.
    But it’s when I have heard you talk that this is most in effect. I live in Australia, so I have only had the privelage over podcasts. This was after I’d been a consumer of yoru content (does that sound gross? It sounds gross, doesn’t it?) for some times, and I thought that although I didn’t actually KNOW the Yarn Harlot, and I haven’t read the archives too extensively, I got the general idea of what said YH was about.
    But every time I hear you interviewed, I find it profoundly affecting. Things that have been lurking in my brain, unarticulated, spring forth fully formed. Things that I am SURE are important but am not sure why get their justification. All in a comforting, we’re-in-it-together type way.
    Thankyou for being brave. We appreciate it.

  170. Hi Steph just wanted to say a huge Congratulations to you and how much I am looking forward to reading your new book. Loved every one of them so far so this new one is going to be well loved I am sure 🙂
    Helen from the UK
    Ravelry ID : myheartexposed

  171. I’ve learned over the years (and it sounds like you have, too), that the things I’ve said that people found most life-changing were things that those people misunderstood what I meant. Which is great as a humility exercise. The most important things I say are not what I meant when I said them, but what someone needed to hear, and was able to re-interpret to mean what they needed to hear at the time. For me, that is when the Divine voice completely over-rides my own, and I praise the Divine for allowing me to be an instrument of understanding in the world.
    Sometimes you take the hits when someone misunderstands you, and sometimes you get the credit when they misunderstand you. Either way, it’s part of the job and a valuable service (at least that’s what I keep telling myself).
    Congrats on the book…can’t wait to read it and find my own meanings in it.

  172. Stephanie,
    I really appreciated this post and especially enjoyed your perfectly chosen quotes. I teach public speaking and I want to paper the white board with them when i start teaching next week. As you know, getting up and speaking can carry with it many of the same fears of critque. As an aside, I wanted to hold you up to all my students when I saw you speak here in Portland, OR this winter. I just love your wry but always energetic and engaging style. Can’t wait to read the new book.

  173. Steph, you’re so hard on yourself. Why do you think so many people buy your books? Why do you think so many people read your blog every day? You make us feel understood. You’ve shown us our power as a force of knitters. And you’re a damned good writer and funny as hell.
    So you’re going to come to Ann Arbor again?

  174. Stephanie – I’d like to share two of my own favorite quotes in the hopes that they will calm your inner angst-ridder teenager. (Mine jeers at me and chants “nobody likes you, everyone is laughing at you behind your back, you’re worthless!”)
    The first is from C. S. Lewis: “Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one!'”
    By that definition, you have an embarrassing richness of friends.
    The second quote: “No matter what I do, some people are just going to be stupid. It is _not_ my job to save them from themselves.”
    That quote is from li’l ol’ me. I use it when I need to remember to live and let live.
    We your friends celebrate with you at this launching of your latest literary work. May it sail triumphantly into the sunset and avoid all icebergs. But the real question is: did you whack it with a big bottle of champagne before you sent it off? Or did you decide not to, as that would make the pages stick together…

  175. I just recently have learned of you and purchased 4 of your books. I have so enjoyed them and am looking forward to getting this new one. I look forward also to reading your blog. Do miss it so much when you aren’t able to blog. Feel like my day isn’t right.

  176. Stephanie, we will love your book. I love to read what you write because you get me, somehow totally get me, and make me laugh at my own ridiculous yarn addicted self, and give me a frame of reference to present myself in when people think i am absolutely a nutcase for making socks on tiny little toothpick size 2 needles when you could just buy them at walmart, for pity’s sake. My husband is thrilled to know there are other wives who share my obsession with all things fiberful, and he even came to hear you speak and laughed his taciturn old head off.
    so there.

  177. I own all your books and your ability to say profound things and really funny things and insightful things and all of them really really well astounds me.
    I just sent my first book to the publisher,(mine is a bead book with patterns and things, so different and less writing thank goodness) and I’ve saved many of your book writings like those above and they have been sooooo helpful to my process. I thank you immensely.

  178. Your last book arrived just after I left to be with my hospitalized mother-in-law. My husband mailed it on with some wool. I sat by her in the hospital and knit. I wanted her to feel I was confident she could survive (we didn’t know;) so I needed to keep as upbeat as possible.
    Each time more bad news arrived, I would leave the room, pull out your book and read a few pages, begin to laugh, and finally my eyes would stop watering and my nose became less red. Then I could continue to project hope to her. Your book was a medicine to be taken in small doses as it would run out. A month and a half later, I had 4 pages to go when she died.
    I can’t thank you enough for providing something so sweet, so funny, and uplifting at such a hard time. Nothing else I can think of would have worked. Only rush hour and the knowledge that dinner is due in 45 minutes is keeping me from rushing out to get your new book right now. Thank goodness I don’t need it as badly right now.
    Keep writing.

  179. SO. MUCH. LOVE.
    I want to head out to Borders *tonight* and pick this up. Please keep writing and sharing your stories. You are a fabulous, funny writer who also makes me cry. (I still tear up thinking about the “Single Sock” story from your last Yarn Harlot book.)
    Thank you for touching so many lives, including mine. Thank you for reminding us that there are no Knitting Police. Thank you for posting here.

  180. FWIW, I am frequently judgmental of the books I read, get annoyed easily, and have no patience at all for writers who aren’t as good as they think they are, and I’ve given two of your books to a friend who’s a knitter – as well as a published author, an editor, a copy editor, a trainer of copy editors, a teacher of writing seminars and a fierce critic.
    She enjoys them. FWIW.
    Also, I crochet, so you’ve got an extra hurdle to leap there 😉

  181. Someone gave me “At Knits End” 2 days after I had a total knee replacement and was still in hospital. It was the best gift I could have received! It was hilarious and I saw myself all over in it (the heavy meds had nothing to do with it as it was funny at home too). My only frustration was not having someone nearby that I could read passages to so we could laugh together. Since then I have bought all of your books and enjoyed them.
    I met you once at SOAR at Lake Tahoe late in the evening the day you arrived and found you cranky, but I’d have been cranky too if I’d been traveling all day. You had totally recovered your wit and smile by the time you addresses us the next evening, and you were hilarious and we could see ourselves in everything you said. You have a gift!

  182. I hear you everyday in your blog, thoughtful, funny, therapeutic, real, …….
    Bring a box load of books to Rhinebeck so I can purchase yet another great book from you in person. Thanks and Congrats on all the hard work.

  183. You are a brilliant comedic writer and I feel fortunate to have been able to read your work and hear it read by the author herself! I can’t wait to read this tome. MAZELTOV!!!

  184. Congratulations. I think you are describing ‘birth’ and all the joys and tangles of having children. Hard to let ‘them’ go out into the world – but, of course, we want them to do so.
    I look forward to reading your newest work.

  185. Not only have I heard you (literally and figuratively)– I feel like you’ve heard me. It’s true. You write things that speak directly to me, as if you wrote them only for me — and I bet a million other people feel the same way.
    All the Best!

  186. Congrats on the “birth” of the new little one 🙂 (I feel like we should knit you some booties or something!) It really feels like you included us in the process of your creation – and for that I thank you.
    It makes it so much fun to read when we can imagine you snuggled up in the cottage in the woods (and also recall the amazing gaunt you took for a beer)
    It allows those of us who have dreamed of “one day” publishing a book, to imagine actually doing it.
    So see? you’ve already done much more than just the herculean feat of getting published multiple times – you’re made all of us feel like we’re a friend who is included in the process.
    thank you. and once again, congrats.

  187. I don’t know if you’ll read all the way down here to comment #5,768,474 or so, but I thought I’d tell you the story of how I found you.
    I read an essay of yours – it was probably in one of the KnitLit books – about your practice of knitting socks for new babies while acting as the mother’s doula. And this particular mother was only going to have one sock because that’s all the time you had – all the time needed for that tragic delivery. And I sobbed reading it, having once been in a similar situation. I still get choked up.
    So after that, I found the blog and The Yarn Harlot book. Eventually you taught me to knit socks (Knitting Rules) – something I never thought possible when I picked up the needles again as an adult.
    I’ve met you twice in person (oh, that fog over Detroit Metro!), and even though you probably wouldn’t remember me, I hear you, Stephanie. I hear you.

  188. I check your site every day, looking forward to a laugh or to admire the knitting you show, but I wanted to mention something else. In one of your books you shared some advice from your mom. One of your girls wasn’t sleeping through the night yet and you were missing sleep. She told you that one night she’d sleep through and that stage would have passed, and to enjoy it while you had it. I often think about the things you’ve written that have made me laugh, especially every time I try to knit socks (and that’s often). While this advice didn’t make me laugh, it came back to me every night this winter as I nursed my baby girl: someone else has been through this and misses it. She’s weaning now and I miss it already. You just never know what’s going to connect, I guess, but I wanted to tell you that this had. Thanks. Jill (and baby Nell, who is just going to have to be satisfied with bought socks for now)

  189. You know, I don’t post often, really only when I have something to say. I wanted to pass along that your first book was very moving for me. It was after I finished it, as I sat there thinking on some of the essays, that I flipped it over and saw you had a blog. I walked over to the computer and typed your URL in and began reading a blog regularly for the first time. It was that book that started me on blogs, my own blog, and motivating me to find a SnB. A whole world opened to me. So, your words do have an effect. I look forward to this book.

  190. I will! Congratulations. I can’t wait to read the new book. Thanks for your hard work and voicing your writing emotions. Jane

  191. If I’m in bed reading excerpts from your book to my husband who is snoring, trust me, you’ve touched me. I relate to so much of what you write…and any time you make another person smile you’ve done a good thing. Like Friday’s mom…I too awoke one morning wondering…did you find buttons in London???

  192. Remember, when people say they “hate” a book, it means that they were moved emotionally. They were affected just as much as someone who says they love it. It may not be a positive emotion, but they were affected!
    Yes, it’s not that great of a thing. But I find it makes the harsh comments a little easier to deal with.
    PS I love your books!!

  193. Steph, first off, a hearty huzzah to you for dropping another gem for us!
    While I only meet you at your signings (I’m the jam and soap lady from California), the parts of you that you share in your books and on your blog make me think that I -do- know you. Hardly a day goes by but there isn’t something I find from you that resonates with me, whether it’s loving Elizabeth Peters’ books or the squirrel from hell, the tribulations of motherhood or the delight in London, your birthday party with Franklin at LK or the parade of first-sock folk – and especially our mutual adoration of new humans in all their glory and giggles.
    Suffice it to say that your books are something I turn to often – Knitting Rules is right by my knitting corner, Knit’s End close by for those times you just need a break or you’ll stomp the living (expletive deleted) from that lace scarf. Casts Off is on the coffee table. Yarn Harlot is on the bedside table (and the little blue sock never fails to make me verklempt.) And the new Free Range Knitter will probably stay in my knitting bag so I can read funny and poignant excerpts to other knitters!
    I hate to be the one to break it to you, but your readers certainly feel like we know and love you. How ’bout doing a random drawing for signed, personalized copies to get those contributions to MSF flowing in again?

  194. I hear you. We all hear you, or we wouldn’t have read your book(s)/your blog/commented. We hear. And thank you so much for being here, knitting, and writing. I can’t wait to read your new book!

  195. What a way to make a living, eh? Glad that you choose to do it, though. So many of us appreciate the effort.

  196. I am so glad you’re a writer. Otherwise, how else would I have gotten to know you? I may never meet you but you’ve had a positive effect on me. Keep the books coming, as long as you’re able.

  197. Well, Amazon hasn’t delivered mine yet, but I expect to love it, the same way I’ve loved all your books. In writing books, you’ve done an amazing thing the majority of other human beings will never be able to do. Try to remember it is what it is, and if you’ve done the best you can do, what else is there? Not everybody’s going to adore us or our work or our whatever – – and it’s a shame, because we’re wonderful!

  198. SOOOOO looking forward to the new book, we love you over here – even the non-knitter thinks you’re hysterical and nothing short of brilliant! That goes for the blog too…

  199. Three and a half years ago I accidentally learned to knit and preceeded to fall headlong,first into lust and then into love. The attraction was so strong and fast it felt a little dirty.
    At first I kept it quiet and only knit when I was alone. But the attraction kept growing and soon I was attending Chicks with Sticks at my LYS. I moved my yarn basket to the family room and knit in front of my children. I couldn’t stop and didn’t really want to. I now work at my LYS and teach other people to find their innner knitter. Last week I attended a board meeting and four of us were shamelessly creating beautiful work with our hands.
    Reading your books and blog has helped me more freely embrace my passion and become a Knitter and helped my beloved husband find room in his heart to share me with the lover he doesn’t quite understand but knows makes me happy.
    Thank you for sharing the words in your heart and illuminating the path.

  200. Stephanie —
    I learn something from every blog entry (whether what you intended or not!), and I laugh far more than twice per chapter…. Thank you for doing what you do. Please don’t stop. CONGRATULATIONS!

  201. I can’t wait to get your new book! I’ve loved them all. And, just so you know, not only have your books made me laugh, they’ve made my husband laugh from watching ME laugh at times. Thanks for helping me show him that I’m not the only crazy one. Love and Congrats!

  202. I can imagine how hard it is to be out there for people to get opinion-y on. I hear you on that! I had to learn long ago that either you sit okay with yourself or you lose yourself. Tough thing to do though.
    Wish you well on your journey and I promise to laugh at least once while I read your new book.

  203. My very first thought was, geez, didn’t she just write a book? Where does she find the insight and wherewithall to write so many books? Then I realized, oh, this *is* the book that you _just_ (ha ha, in a weekend, wasn’t it?) wrote.
    I hope it’s a riotous success, flies off the shelves and keeps you in the perfect zone where you know you did a fine job, but you’re still all you. Not bloated, not deflated, but you.

  204. Yeah, I’m not sure if you’re gonna read this far down, but I was going to email you today anyway, so here goes.
    I stumbled upon ‘Yarn Harlot’ in the library about 3 weeks ago.
    Since then I’ve cast on 2 scarves and a shawl (first time in 20 years), have ‘At Knit’s End’ by my bedside, have downloaded ‘…Casts Off’ from Audible, bought and finished ‘Knitting Rules’…
    I realised I was reading ‘Yarn Harlot’ slowly as I didn’t want the writing to end.
    Now I have found your blog, I’m reading it month by month from the beginning. I keep wanting to ask you questions about things that happened 4 years ago..!
    As a writer, I learn so much about creating a sense of belonging from you.
    In fact I linked to your blog in a post I wrote on my (non-knitting) blog a couple of weeks ago.
    So, yes, I don’t know you, but I LOVE your writing.
    And, yes, it can be scary.

  205. I don’t know if I will love your book or hate it until I read it (and I do intend to buy and copy and devour every word), but I love you for your blog, your honesty, and your insight.
    Write on, sister.

  206. Steph–your writing moves me. It’s the best compliment I can think of, and the one that makes all the difference when I hear it personally.
    Thanks sharing your perilous sojourn into evisceration–I can only tell you that I’ve been there–its horrible and exhilarating and terrifying. But it becomes who you are–you can no longer take a breath without writing, without searching for patterns, word-stitches of meaning. I’ve always found your word-fabric beautiful.
    Good luck with the new venture!
    Amy Lane

  207. I think in was Yarn Harlot or it could have been At Knits End, but I do know it was the year the power went out (was that 2003)and my big sister, aunt (who I hooked on knitting! yippee), middle sister, mom, neice and daughter were in seclusion at my cottage.
    Somehow I was told to back away from anything that looked like work and relax (usually this happens because I look like I am exhausted and about ready to fall over). Relaxation meant hanging about the workers, opening your book and reading it out loud. It is very difficult to read your books out loud. Things spew from your mouth and nose and tears run down your cheeks. There is no graceful way to laugh and and read out loud.
    On to bedtime, where I took your book for light bedtime reading. There are two problems with this…when it is lights out, it is hard to explain to people why you are making choking noises, because you are trying not to laugh out loud; and it interferes with sleep. Then because one stays up late to read, one looks very unrelaxed the next day, and gets out of doing work and the cycle starts again; which isn’t necessarily bad.
    You are funny. Anyone who matters knows that and is just waiting for more funny, and not waiting to critique any longer.
    I won’t buy your new book, I will let it be my Mom’s gift to me for Christmas. I won’t even have to ask or even make a list. She will know. I will just have to make sure she knows I haven’t bought it for myself. Delayed pleasure. The best kind.

  208. I never know if you really have time to read all 300 comments, so I seldom comment, but I just want to add my name to the list of people who read your books and rejoice to realize we are not alone..there are other people who think the same crazy things we do, who see life lessons in knitting and spinning, who well..I’ll just keep this brief. Well done, keep writing, I’m reading, I am sure my family is sick of hearing me say “The Yarn Harlot in her blog said…” But it’s funny and it is about my life too, and I do laugh out loud at least once per chapter, which is a LOT for me!

  209. First of all, congratulations! Second, being able to separate your SELF from your ART makes you a very wise woman indeed. It must be all that yoga…

  210. Your writing, whether about knitting, a personal experience or your family and travels is a true pleasure for me. I feel a connection to you, yours and the others who comment on your blog. I feel I’m in a special place when I read your blog and at the end of the day, no matter how tired I feel, I always turn to the Yarn Harlot for some peace and perspective. Thank You and I love your books, too.

  211. Congratulations on accomplishing what few manage to do — writing and publishing a(nother) book. I learned to knit when I was 12 (I am 55 now). For many years I was the only knitter I knew, except for a brief period when I knit at lunch with ONE other knitter. Then a friend introduced me to your blog and I wasn’t alone anymore. Through you I found the online knitting community, which is talented and generous (not as funny as you, but talented and generous). Keep on Truckin’ Steph.

  212. Yes, you have connected! The story that resonated the most was The Three Blankets. I read it and cried a little; then I read it to my 27 year-old daughter and we both cried a little and hugged each other. I hope she will think about it and be encouraged when she starts a family! I can’t wait to read your new essays. Your teachers (and mother) should be proud.

  213. I have bought every one of your books. I have pre-ordered Free Range Yarn Harlot. I have called my bookstore repeatedly and they still don’t have your book in stock. I am giving them 2 days, and then I will go to the store with my knitting needles and pick the lock and see for myself whether they don’t have your book or they might by hoarding it for themselves. Not that I am obsessive or paranoid, but I can’t imagine anyone NOT liking it. Here’s a toast to you, Stephanie!

  214. I always enjoy your books. As a knitting mother it’s great to have a book with short excerpts that can be read as little as time allows. Little tidbits to make us smile and get us through the day.

  215. I have every book you’ve written and love them all. I’ve laughed and cried and gone right along with you through thick and thin. I pre-ordered this book and I am happily looking forward to reading it. Because of you I’ve pushed through the difficult beginnings of knitting and love it now. You’ve given me peace in my day, laughter in my life, and a thoughtfulness that keeps pace with silence. Thank you!!!!!

  216. Honestly, I cannot imagine any knitter not liking the new book — or any of the others. I *know* they will love it.
    But at the same time, I do understand, in my own (very) small way, the part of you that fears sending your baby out into the big, bad world and exposing it to the opinions of others. I’m by no means a best-selling writer like you, but I’ve always wanted to write, and yet have long been plagued by self-doubt that has on occasion become paralyzing (almost literally; I once had to have a story I’d written physically pried from my fingers!
    Okay, that was a bit off-topic. Anyhoo, thank you in advance for the laughter, knowledge and inspiration I know I’ll receive from the new book, as I have from all those that came before it.
    So…when’s the next one coming? 😉

  217. I pre-ordered the Book long ago. I have all of your books, and I re-read them from time to time when I need to remember that knitters are people, too. I chuckle again at things that tickled me the first time and the last time. I learn sly little techniques and new words. I affirm my own womanhood and knitterhood and intelligence-hood – aargh. I’ve created another new word! Your writing is what many of us would say or write if only we had taken that path. Keep up that special contact you’ve created – and say it for all of us! Thank you again!
    Huzzahs from golden, deep red and bronze Northern Minnesota.

  218. I think I have to read your blog every day because you don’t have enough books yet! I so enjoy laughing, crying, learning with you.
    Thanks for being human. It makes it so much easier to be heard.

  219. Neatly said.
    How to respond? 2 things.
    1. I agree with Linda “You can’t please all…”
    2. FYI – You were a gift to me. A gift that I now pass on.
    A couple of years ago, I was loitering in the craft section of a book store, perusing knitting books. A kind soul and I engaged in general knit conversation (I was pretty new to knitting, so I mostly listened) and she pointed out your books citing I REALLLLLLY needed to read the books by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. I was clueless, but game. I thought I’d start small (minor pun, there) with “At Knit’s End Meditations for…”
    I’m still reading, still discovering, still giggling, still getting teary-eyed, still gifted with reading joy…still looking forward to your next book.
    And, at a book store last month, I showed a quilter, with a knitting daughter, these entirely spiffy books by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee and she’s looking forward to gifting her daughter with a lovely, fun knitterly book for Christmas…
    Thank you for sharing your art and soul.

  220. I think that that is what each of us who are lucky enough to find our calling in life live for. Knowing that you have made a difference in another person’s life is as important as the paycheck. I am a nurse and worked in hospice for 15 years before having to stop due to health problems, and am now trying to find that meaning again in my life. Thanks.

  221. Stephanie. I have read all your books and I read your blog and I travelled a long way the other week to see you at iKnit. I do all these things with pleasure because the first of your writing that I came across was in KnitLit 2 – I was reading it in the car (not driving!) and I laughed so much my husband had to stop the car to find out what I was reading (he just didn’t get it though). Since then I have read all your books, they are all laugh out loud funny and they all make me feel like – wow, I’m so not alone here! My husband and children have also had a look at them and while they still don’t completely get it – they get a whole lot more than I could ever have got through to them. Your writing speaks to me and it makes me feel like you are my best friend who really understands me and where I am surrounded by completely non-knitters – that makes me feel really good. So thanks for that. Rona

  222. Your books are brilliant – incisive, funny and they help keep me sane when everything has got into a tangle (in knitting or in life). The absolute best bit? If I leave them lying around in the bathroom, my hubby secretly reads them too!

  223. I love your books. Recently I have completed a diet which involved me in not eating or drinking conventional food for 14 weeks (I lost 53lbs).
    During this time I knitted a lot of washcloths and I read some of your books.
    One day I was suffering from monster PMS and was feeling emotionally fragile, I read a bit in one of your books(it was the santa loo roll covers) and I started to laugh, I laughed and laughed until I began to sob, huge convulsing, nose streaming red eyed sobs right from deep inside me. I felt so much better afterwrds 🙂

  224. i feel this exact same way about my kids. it is as though they are extensions of myself walking the planet, risking feedback. only *I* am allowed to freely critique; all else are on thin ice (good or bad!). i remind myself that my job was to give them wings, and their job is to fly. i think it’s true of the books too.. they are birthed, and your part in it is slowly let them be. sometimes there’s a cost associated…

  225. Stephanie,
    I am waiting patiently (NOT) for you new book. I also laugh out loud (as I do with your blog) and cry. You are an incredible person and I know this b/c you let us into your life and see what an incredible person you are. You where you heart on your sleeve and that shows me that you are as human as human gets. I too can relate to you books and that makes me love your writing. I can’t stress enough that I think you are wonderful and I need your books and your blogs sometimes to get me through the day. I love to laugh and you make me do that.
    I am also one that pre-ordered your book. On July 5th to be exact. I was disappointed that the date got pushed back but that makes it more exciting. I cannot wait to read it. I talk about you at work and to my family. They know how much I love to knit so they humor me. I love it!!!
    Congratulations and knit on!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh, and WRITE on too.

  226. Boo Hoo, I pre ordered from Amazon months ago and they won’t be shipping till the 23rd. I want it NOW!!!!

  227. Well, not being a writer myself, I can’t say that I understand how you feel, but I must tell you that I don’t think your fears are well-founded…you write from your heart and you do it beautifully…I can’t wait to get the book, I’ve had it on preorder for months! I’m sure I will enjoy reading it every bit as much as I have all the previous offerings from you.

  228. For what it’s worth…I’ve been reviewed as a photographer and as a musician. I didn’t take positive reviews very seriously, because it seemed that if I did, I would also have to take negative reviews seriously. note: I was raised in a Yankee-work-ethic-every-tub-on-its-own-bottom-pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps sort of way. Not saying it has been helpful in every real-life situation, but in the case of taking other peoples’ opinions of my creative work to heart? Very helpful. 😉

  229. Your book has come out in time for my birthday. I think that’s a message.
    I’ve re-read your books – they’re great for the bath – you can’t knit in the bath can you? Next best thing. Although I don’t know you and you don’t know me I have found that esp. on the blog you clarify for me what I have been thinking on for a while; most recently on faith. I think that is a sign of a really good writer.
    You have also given me the nerve to try colourwork, lace and socks all by reminding me that there are no knitting police and knitting is not scary. My partner has learnt that the sockyarn stash is your fault;he has also learnt what stash is by reading the books left in the bathroom and that knitting is an expression of love.
    And btw, I think the Canadian tourist board owes you a stipend: I want to make the journey from Scotland to Canada, and I have learnt a lot more about your country, thanks to you.

  230. Even on the days that my teenage son is his most contrary, control-the-world self, I can always connect by showing him some of your blog, or giggling about it when he’s around, or emailing an interesting bit. He has actually read and re-read your previous books and laughed and laughed. Why? Because he’s watched me quilt and knit ALL HIS LIFE, and he GETS IT!
    Your writing is a basic connector in our lives, as is my crafting, and doesn’t even always have to be funny. It’s a window into another place, another way of thinking, and shows that other knitters are just as crazy as his mom.
    And that’s a good thing, I think. Write on!

  231. I personally went to one of your signings and there were 300 people there. The woman in front of me drove for 3 hours to get there. You can be proud of that, because I don’t think all authors get that kind of turn-out.
    I personally have loved all of your books, and have kept at least one “pearl of wisdom” from each. Congratulations on your new book. I can’t wait to read it.

  232. Thank you! I needed to hear this today. To know that my accomplishments or failures are seperate to me, myself, as a person. Thanks for reminding me.

  233. Stephanie,
    Congratulations on your new book! As soon as I get to a bookstore I intend to buy it, and several of your other books. I just started knitting this summer (well, knitting with needles; before that I knitted with knitting looms for about six months) and when I went looking for knitting books yours were the first ones I saw. I bought Knitting Rules! and then At Knit’s End. Both of them are now worn from continued rereading. Both of them make me laugh and inspire me to greater heights of knitting. For someone who has only learned the knit stitch, your knitting efforts–socks? sweaters? lace? I daren’t attempt those quite yet!–are both inspirational and scary. Thank you for writing your books and this blog. You’re amazing! 🙂

  234. Thank you so much for your words about what it’s like to be a writer and when work gets published. I write different kinds of things than you, mostly technical articles, but soon I’m going to dip my toes into the waters of writing for a much wider audience on a more accessible topic as part of a book, and I’m really going to appreciate having your words to refer back to. Thank you.

  235. Steph congrats on the accomplishment of another book. I heard you, when i read your books your way of writing ‘makes things click’.
    Thank you!

  236. So what you’re saying, Stephanie, is you’re just like the rest of us: no matter how much proof we have that we’re not complete idiots and we don’t produce absolute crap, we all still lay in bed at night and try not to listen to the negative voice in our heads. Welcome! As for me, thanks for making me laugh – whether from your books, your blog or the talks you give. In my book, that’s the biggest gift someone can give. Thanks.

  237. I’m torn. Should I pre-order a book I know I am going to purchase eventually, or should I wait to purchase it from the bookstore where my sister and I will surely go to see you in person, and get it autographed? Dilemmas, dilemmas.
    I’m afraid I have no advice on how you can overcome your writer’s angst, but I do suggest you carry a copy of the new book along with your “emergency knitting”. Sign it not on the usual page, but on the one that lists all the books you’ve written prior to this one, you know, for “emergency arguments” on public trasportation.

  238. Congratulations on the same arrival of your latest “child”. You seem to be suffering the typical writer’s postpartum blues here, don’t worry or fret just get the latest wip out and you’ll feel better.
    Can’t wait to meet the new kid and coo over it!

  239. Hi Stephanie,
    I have not yet read any of your books, but after listening to you at the I Knit Day I intend to start. I have loved knitting all my life and used to be the butt of many jokes at school because I knitted on the bus and at school – it just wasn’t cool! (and that was 35 years ago)
    I just want you to know that sitting in a roomful of knitters, listening to a whole talk about knitting humour was the most at home in a crowd that I have ever felt in my life.
    I am looking forward to reading your books.

  240. ok.. so,.. I have a tv show that is premiering this fall and EVERYTHING that you spoke about regarding an audience applies to my line of work as well.. and you spoke of it all so brilliantly and so lovingly and so generously.. and it makes me feel so much better to know that you are there putting it down on paper…. UYou completely captured the feelings. (pain, joy and the whole damn thing), I would like to print this up and read it daily…
    Can’t wait to read this book.

  241. I’ve read your books, and passed them along to my daughter. She’s not a knitter, but a painter (the artist kind, not the house-painting kind), and she loves them too. Can’t wait to read this one! I’ll reread the others while I wait. They’re good no matter how many times I read them.

  242. I think you are absolutely wonderful. It seems odd to me that anyone could think anything other than that of either you or what you write.
    I’d love to hear more about you deal with a critical review. I hate being criticised for anything – whether it’s my work or my personal short-comings – and I tend to take it all very personally, and sulk, and become all passive-aggressive.

  243. I think its time your publisher produced a boxed set of your books to be put out, in hardcover, ideally in time for Christmas!
    I found your account of the writing in the Snowy Woods last winter very moving – congratulations on seeing this one across the finish line!

  244. I’m so glad this new book is one of essays. I love the more “useful” ones (Knitting Rules is my go-to sock and hat book) and it’s amazing that one can read a reference book for pleasure, but the essays are my fav. You have a rare breadth of writing ability.
    I recently had a small brush with “fame” and found that contrary to what I had thought all my life, I did NOT like being the centre of attention at all. You now have even more of my respect and admiration for doing the public appearances even though you are scared witless.
    And WHEN will The Book be here in Canada? It’s just not fair that we have to wait.

  245. I’m always so sad when I finish your books. Sad I was greedy and consumed the book in one reading. Sad it’s over and I’ve already read everything you’ve written. This time, I’m going to make it last by reading only one chapter a day. This way, I can drag it out and feel proud of myself for having savored it. How is that for a review?

  246. I just the other day bought your calendar–first time I’d seen it (at my favorite LYS). I dutifully put it away in my yarn closet to await January 1!! Now, your new book will be available. Wow!! Can’t wait to get it. I am one of those fans who does laugh out loud many times when reading your writings. Of course, we connect with you. We are knitters!! You so very often brilliantly describe trials and tribulations we have experienced. Bring it on!! I guess you can’t help your insecurities, but I sure hope you don’t let them stop you from writing the next one!!!

  247. Congratulations on yet another milestone. I’ve been waiting for what feels like forever for this book. Thank goodness it’ll be for sale soon. Good work!

  248. Your writing – books and blog – presents a persona, who may or may not be the real ‘you’.
    Whether she is ‘you’ or not (and I don’t believe you’re cynical and manipulative enough to invent a whole persona and keep it up every day, every post, every book, every talk), I love that persona.
    She’s goofy and lacking in self confidence (which I can identify with) and warm and loving and funny and talented (which I can aspire to), and I’m sure if I ever ran into her in a bar we would end up drinking beer and laughing ’til the tears ran down our cheeks. And I’d bring her yarn.
    Hugs to the Harlot!

  249. I hear you. No matter how much people say, just ignore the jerks, it’s just not possible. I’m glad you dance with glee. I love that you dance with glee. Remember that there are others of us who, even though we don’t know you, rejoice with you. I will go close my office door and do a little happy dance for you today.

  250. It helps to know that you suffer the same fears and anxieties we do. Sometimes it’s easy to put you on a pedestal; you are so good at connecting with us each day. I hope you will record the book as I enjoy hearing you read your books. This also frees my hands for knitting at the same time.

  251. I am sure it will be excellent. I will buy it the minute I see it.
    And you are always wonderful, no matter what.
    Thank you for giving me the courage to knit.
    Now if you could just make me brave enough to try to knit socks….

  252. Let’s toast all those who experience, with this new book of yours, the touch of your heart to theirs when they hear you and get it. As an artist, your yearning and your job is to communicate effectively to the best of your ability. When someone gets it, you accomplished that if even for a moment. And, with your book there will be many, many, many moments such as that and those moments will continue happening and will go forward in time long after you have moved on.
    Years ago I showed one of my fiction short stories to my parents. It was, in my opinion at the time, my best to date. Oh, I was so happy with it. My parents read it with me watching them the whole time (I was young and didn’t realize how rude that was). When they finished, they just stared at me blankly. I love my parents dearly, they love me dearly … and yet they had just read my precious baby and could not even muster a comment.
    For a while I was really sore at them about that, but then it occurred to me: they are not my public. My stories were weird, which was what I was into but my parents would not have reached out for that kind of story written by someone else. I realized how cruel it had been of me to talk up my story and put it in their hands and then watch them as they read it. My gosh, to put them on the spot like that was so incredibly ignorant and I felt so bad for having done it.
    Anyway, I digress. My real point here is that those who hear you and get it … they are your public. Those who don’t hear you, aren’t touched, criticize you, etc., well they just aren’t your public. It doesn’t really have to be a personal thing at all. They just obviously aren’t your public, which is totally fine. Because your public are there to receive your communication and enjoy it, be inspired, laugh out loud, and close the back cover smiling and feeling satiated.
    I toast them, and I toast you. Congratulations on the new book … you go girl!
    Warmest wishes,

  253. “they come to me and say ” I wanted you to know that your book meant something to me” and in that moment, were it appropriate, I could leap across the table and kiss them full on the mouth… ”
    YIKES! I hope you bring lots of chapstick for your next book tour, looks like you are gonna need it….
    Well Done.

  254. I’m itching to read it now but it doesn’t come out this side of the pond until November. I really enjoyed the Secret Life of a Knitter – my husband bought it for me when I was in hospital with appendicitis in Florida on our honeymoon and it made us laugh when we really needed cheering up – so more of similar sounds really good to me.

  255. Congratulations Steph! You have my utmost respect for putting yourself out there like this and for being a Writer(with a capital W). It’s a hard job. You’re good at it. And I’m excited to read this one.
    Hugs. See you soon!

  256. Congrats Steph on another book!
    I have never read any of your books, but I am totally in love with your blog. I have laughed so hard, I nearly peed myself. I have teared up at the sad events in your life. Even though I don’t really know you personally, I feel that I know you personally. If you know what I mean.
    Now, I need to find and read all your books, probably in no particular order, same a I read your blog when I first discovered it.
    Again Congrats!

  257. As a PS to my earlier post:
    I seem to remember at IKnit day someone very clever telling me that if your brain is in theta you do your most creative thinking because you switch off the part of your brain that is most self-critical.
    Clearly the solution is to find some simple, repetitive activity to engage the theta waves; now what on earth could you do?!

  258. Many years ago, a musician friend of mine shared a philosophy with me that I’ve always tried to remember when I get nervous about other people’s opinions of my work. “Once it gets past the amplifier,” he said, “it’s not my responsibility anymore.” As long as you do the best you can before things hit the amplifier, there’s no point in worrying about what comes later.

  259. When your first book came out, I took it on a plane trip with me – I had packed my knitting so it wouldn’t be taken away. During the whole trip I kept knocking my husband’s arm saying, “you’ve got to read this – it’s me!” I’m so glad you’re writing about our shared passion and writing well. Best of luck with the new book. I’m looking forward to getting a copy.

  260. I hear you. I heard you. You touch me. I weep. Sometimes I laugh until I can’t breathe (which can look like weeping). Your -Gift- becomes your gift-to-us when you share it, do not ever forget. And I thank you for sharing it. One that can be enjoyed over and over and over. ALLOW, Stephanie. A powerful gift to yourself, too.

  261. I realized, reading “It’s all the scary part” that a lot of my impression of the knitting community comes from my impression of you (both because I’ve been reading you a little longer and because you write so well). We are, for the most part, tolerant, helpful and nurturing. I have taken that from you and now give a little of it back. I imagine that a person’s writing is as much a part of them as their music or woodworking or – yes! – their knitting would be. Thanks for sharing.

  262. You make me proud to be a kniiter, most people view me (and knitters in general) and harmless and quirky little old ladies to be ignored. You make me proud of my craft and my abilities as a knitter. Keep doing what you’re doing. and I’ll keep knitting.. hope to finally see you on your next book tour. Cant wait to read the new book.

  263. What has amazed me over the years I have read your blog – really my first exposure to what blogging is all about – is that you do this for FREE! Here you are – an author – earning your living selling books; killing yourself on book tours to promote sales. And you blog – for FREE. Making us laugh, learn, & listen to our own leanings – for FREE. And still have enough humour left over to encapsulate it into more books!
    Before your blog, I didn’t even know there was a name for all the yarn overflowing the extra closet (ahh: STASH). And the wonderful analogy about wearing intricate socks no one sees: like delicate lingerie – it makes us feel special.
    Our lives are ripples, expanding outward affecting other lives in ways we’ll never know. I’m only one you’ve touched – & I thank you.
    PS-Where can I find the pattern for that very leafy grapevine sock?

  264. I certainly feel like I hear you, Stephanie. I donated to KWB. I knitted socks (and I don’t wear socks that much). And I try not to hear you telling me that my stash needs enhancing…
    I’m really looking forwards to your book. I’m going to drop some heavy hints and see if I get it for a Christmas present!

  265. I shamefully have not read any of your books, yet. I am a sad pitiful bit of a knitter whom has only completed several garter stitch scarves, some cell phone cozies, and two wonky hats- that being said I absolutely love your blog and writing style. I check in regularly here. I am sure your latest book is wonderful.

  266. “Do you have any idea how hard it is to make someone laugh out loud?”
    How about making someone burst into tears in public? _Secret Life of a Knitter_ is my favorite of yours. That’s the one in which I have a “best parts version” marked to thrust upon family members so that they might Get It. That’s the one I asked you to autograph on your _Knitting Rules_ tour, even though I had my copy of _Knitting Rules_ with me in my knitting bag (where it still lives as a constant reference). But _Secret Life_ is the most personal one, and I figured it was one-to-a-customer. And that’s the one I was reading at the lunch table at work when I got to the essay about Lene giving up her stash, and lost my composure.
    I was very pleased to read that the newest is again in that “most personal” vein. I understand that can be the hardest to write, but– I hear you.

  267. Stephanie,
    I “discovered” you and the Yarn Harlot last week accidentally. I work at a shopping mall that is slowly going out of business, and when Walden Books was leaving and had a huge sale, I looked through the craft books to see what was left. I picked up “The Yarn Harlot” and started reading. I was hooked (no pun intended, oh, wait, that’s crochet). I couldn’t put it down and took it with me on a trip this weekend to read while my boyfriend watched football. I laughed till I cried about IT at Christmas (my kids could swear I wrote that chapter) and cried during “What her hands couldn’t do”. My boyfriend thought I was nuts. He kept saying “That’s a book about knitting, right?” “But,” I explained, “it’s so much more!” So, Stephanie, even when you get criticized, and you will, because as you say, every writer has to expect it, just think of at least one person you made laugh and cry, and pick up her knitting needles again. I can’t wait to get your new book!

  268. When my budget and/or local library allows, I’ll be picking up a copy. Then I will try to give as intelligent a review as possible, because I totally know what you’re talking about. I’m a musician, and I’m either irritating background noise or the object of a strange and creepy love/obsession (this is rare, but still very, very creepy). There seems to be no in-between. I’m glad you get the real connections with people sometimes. 🙂 It sounds lovelly.

  269. Throughout the ages, books have been a way for people to learn, grow, escape and dream. Not everyone learns the same, nor do they dream the same dreams. Part of the beauty of the written word is that everyone takes something different from it. I have read a couple of your books already and I interpreted them differently. One I read and laughed and cried and laughed some more. Because I could relate to what you are saying. The other I have poured over for the technical advice given for the craft. Because you have a gift for teaching through your words. You can be proud of the legacy you are leaving behind through your words. It might not cure world hunger or bring about world peace, but it does touch those of us who read it and put a smile on our face.
    Oh yeah, when I read a book I don’t particularly like, I try to blame myself. I always hated to critique writings in college, because I don’t think it is fair to judge someone’s writing. If I don’t like something, the writer probably never intended for me to read it. (You won’t find me reading car manuals, Hee! Hee!)
    So don’t be too hard on yourself.

  270. Stephanie,
    Only you can bring to light the joys, frustrations, trials and tribulations of those who are enchanted and addicted to the fiber arts. I have had the honor of driving through a blizzard to see you speak. I was in St. Paul where 700 women were in awe and wrote songs to honor you. Writing a book is like having a baby. You have invested so much of yourself in this project, and I thank you for that investment and for sharing your thoughts with us.
    Knitters and Fibers artests..rise up and give Our fearless leader a hand….and a beer….and some fleece….and some more yarn.

  271. Stephanie, thank you for doing what you do. I do love your writing and it makes me feel a little less odd about loving yarn and knitting and beading so much. Your writing is like a touch stone for me and appreciate that you share it with the world.

  272. Stephanie, I don’t know you but I connect to something in me through what you write. Your insights and wisdoms ring through to the core of who I am and that makes me happy and makes me cry and makes me dance and laugh all at the same time. Your books/essays speak to me in ways that I find frankly amazing. Thank you for all your blood sweat and tears.

  273. I saw the preview copy from the publishers at IKnit – as soon as their copies arrive, I’ll be swooping on one. The “Yarn Harlot: the secret life of a knitter” book made me laugh and cry on the train – and had two people demand what the hell I was reading. One told me she was a knitter and said “there are books *about* knitting?”… The other one was completely unaffected and presumably therefore thought I was a lunatic. You can’t get to everyone all at once…

  274. If I could write even one book that I myself could say “it’s quite good” – I’d be so happy. What an amazing gift to have!

  275. Many,many people enjoy your various writings.If they did not,could you fill halls with your listeners/readers? No.Remember that ‘Critics’ who write unpleasant things,have columns to write,and ‘reputations’to maintain.(in quotations because that is not how normal people carry on).
    Warm regards

  276. Unless the bastards have the courage to give you unqualified praise, I say ignore them. — John Steinbeck
    Congratulations and can’t wait to see it!

  277. congratulations – I can’t wait to read it. I’ve loved all your books, but the essays are really my favorites and I’m so looking forward to another full book of them. thank you!

  278. Bravo on publication. I hope you have a dance for the accomplishment. And, my goodness, what a thought provoking essay on writing – you write quite well about writing. I, for one, am oh so grateful you do what must to be done to write this blog and your books. The cover art on the book tickles me and the title does too.

  279. Hey – I ordered it INSTANTLY when I discovered it mentioned as a “hey, you might like this, too” from amazon when I (pre-)ordered your calendar. I’ve had THAT since June, and I’ve been muttering “hurry hurry hurry” under my breath to 2009 so I can use it. I’m having a Ceremony on New Year’s Eve so I can take off the cellophane. But anyway, I pre-ordered this book 1,000 years ago and I LOVE IT!! I adore it!! And….the very instant I get it, I’m going to kiss it all over, wrap it in a receiving blanket and go to bed with it. I’m hanging a sign on my doorknob saying OPEN AT YOUR OWN PERIL and I’m reading it cover to cover. Then I’ll e-mail ya. PS: I’m about to send two stories off to a magazine, which may be my first Genuine Really Truly published thing. I’m queasy and I haven’t even sent ’em yet. Oy.

  280. Um . . . I promise I won’t praise your new book if that will make you uncomfortable about the book’s journey. I can promise I will love it. You add richness to my life, even though you’re many many kilometers away and I’ve only actually met you once (please come back to St. Paul!). As a forty-something relatively newly-minted knitter, I get overwhelmed sometimes by the online community. Your blog is fabulous, IMO, never overwhelming, and the books are perfect when I need to kick back and be old-fashioned about, well, turning pages. Congratulations on the accomplishment that is a book!!!!! It’s beautiful.

  281. Ani DiFranco wrote beautiful words for such a thing as this:
    “You say, ‘Do they love you or what?’/ I say, ‘They love what I do. The only one who really loves me is you. / And you say, ‘Girl, you kicked some butt,’ / and I say ‘I don’t really remember,/ but my fingers are sore and my voice is, too…’
    I’m a minister. I struggle mightily with the criticisms and praise of people who know the professional, who cannot know the personal, no matter how many times they see me or cry on my shoulder. Performance is always, I think, a strange place to stand. The rabbi is right, too–that we are almost always misunderstood when we touch someone for real. To me, art is finished in the hands of the receiver. I send everything into the world still waiting for the finishing touches, and then it is gone.
    And yes, I quote you from the pulpit sometimes.

  282. Just want to tell you that when I give a person a pair handknit socks, I also read them your essay about handknit socks equaling love. Thank you! Congrats on the new book.

  283. Congratulations on the new baby. I’ve read some of the comments that people will make to writers, and I can understand your reactions. This reader, however, is one who has laughed out loud many times, and cried a few times. You have the ability to touch people, to make the day brighter or make us stop and think. I love your versatility and humor. I may not know you, but I like the mind that your books come out of. I’m especially looking forward to the new one.

  284. Steph, I’m someone that has commented before – not a knitter, but someone who loves knitters and yarn, if that makes sense. You are the only writer whose blog I will read before turning in for bed. I know that you will provide something good to read, funny, or compassionate. Sometimes, all three. If someone provides that, it’s huge, since I do not like to end my day on a low note. All of this to say, I enjoy you being you, and that is just fine by me. If you happen to write a book along the way, it is just icing on the cake. Thank you.

  285. Stop worrying…I know it will be great! Funny, my writing never worries me or bothers my conscience…I guess that makes me a journalist;->

  286. I know this is from yesterday and that you have already posted again today but I wanted to add my sincere thanks for your writing. I read “The Secret Life of a Knitter” for the first time just after my 2nd child was born and I was absolutely blown away by “One Little Sock”. When I was expecting my third last year, every time my worries about “what can go wrong” started overwhelming me, I pulled that out to remind myself that, yes, it can go wrong, and that even so, anything is survivable. And knitting can help. Somehow that calmed my fears. Your writing can make me laugh (at least once in most chapters) but it also makes me think. I am very much looking forward to reading the new one.

  287. I read your books and your blog, because you make me laugh out loud! You make me laugh at myself and remember to not take life so seriously. I am gratiful you write your thoughts down and share them with all of us! Keep doing it, don’t ever stop!

  288. My favorite quote comes from John Steinbeck: “Unless the bastards have the courage to give you unqualified praise, I say ignore them.”
    Write on, Stephanie!

  289. My childhood wasn’t the best. I was told maybe I should write my life story. The irony of irony the theme over and over in the book is noone heard me. And so to you I say I’m listening. And it is listening to what a person is really saying behind tears or laughter to who they really are, there I find the real Stephany. And you my dear have the gift to draw myself and others in to say sit, laugh, cry be real, be human.

  290. Congratulations!!! I am totally in love with your fantabulous books. I love the way you write, you make me laugh so much, my sides ache with laffs, I wanted to tell you how much I enjoy your books, at iKnit, but I had a train to catch. I can’t wait to get me hands on the new one from Knitting and Crochet Guild over ere in England. Hope you can come over to iKnit again next year, me friends and I all came from up North just to see you. We can’t wait to see you again. So this is the last book?
    What will you do if there are no books to write?? Knit lots of stuff of course!!!

  291. This is a beautiful book. I am annoyed with the David Sedaris-like pull quote blazed across the top. It is totally Stephanie McPhee-like. Thank you for more enlightening stories!

  292. Thank you for writing. Not only do I love your books, but I read aloud passages from your “Yarn Harlot: The Secret Lives of Knitters” to my husband and it made him find me less weird and realize that there are plenty of people with yarn habits- not just his wife. Now my stash has it’s own room, but I know he’ll still enjoy it when I read parts of your new book aloud to him.
    Thanks- I can’t wait to read it.

  293. Steph, don’t think about it so much. “I” love you so what more do you want? Reading your stuff makes me homesick (but I’m not from Canada) and happy and I feel as if I have found someone who understands “ME”! Please keep it up. Fahy Bygate in Duxbury, Massachusetts.

  294. I got through college & graduate school but actually pretending that no one was going to read all those term papers that I had to write.
    Besides, the people who don’t like your books are probably non-knitters (mostly) anyway. Has anyone every come up with a term for them (since the word Muggle is already taken….)

  295. Am really looking forward to reading this book! Have thoroughly enjoyed all of your others!!! Way to go!

  296. I look forward to each and every book you write and will write. You have a real gift of writing, Stephanie!

  297. (gulp) For the number of times you have brought tears to my eyes, a smile to my face, a laugh from my mouth, and even a rave to a friend… thank you.

  298. Thank you for putting yourself out there every day, in your books, in your blog, by visiting all the places knitters gather and taking their pictures with your sock of the moment. You are a special person and it is a good thing that you touch lives and give people hope, even if it is just the hope of getting that heel turned, it helps others to build their confidence, which is a wonderful gift to help someone find in themselves. Don’t take the criticisms to heart, those aren’t the people you’re trying to reach anyway. You write because you are creative and a loving person, don’t let it get you down.

  299. What a wonderful entry. Speaking for myself, you frequently ‘say something’ to me in your blog entries, let alone your books. I know what it is to be heard, and it’s quite rare, and writing is just one way to do it, but you are certainly ‘heard’ by me.
    I love the peacock lace, by the way. Every time I see a photo of it in that yarn I go a bit gooey inside, and then instantly plan to learn to knit complicated. And then I remember I have a baby and can’t cook an omelete for more than a few minutes without interruption, let alone learn lace!

  300. while i am going to buy this book, i also just requested that my library purchase it as well (they didn’t have it in the system, for shame!). ya know, i do understand what you say. i get it.

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