Can I make a book?

posted in: Book writing | 28

You may remember a little ramble about how much I had on my plate, accompanied by a few knitted garments looking unfinished and sad. I did promise to have a New Zealand sweater Knit a Long before Christmas. But it was dependent on my working out all the glitches which I have failed to do, as yet. Sorry if you were looking forward to that (next Christmas?). I am also putting the EZ yoke sweater part two together, so I will share that soon.

In terms of having a bit too much on, my plate is now brimming over and there are several peas and chicken nuggets on the floor.

If you have ever done a merger, or even a major change programme, you will know that it is not so much the additional work load as the emotional load that is so exhausting. I need to look after myself (I also have lots of people looking out for me, so please don’t be concerned), and one thing that revives and sustains me is making things. I know many of you also use your sewing, knitting and craft work as a relief from stress, misery, grief and cacophony. Although my job is very demanding (especially from now until Easter) I think an alternative focus, that is demanding but fun, could be just what I need So I might  get my job done with a degree of calm focus.

I am pleased to report that the garments in my previous post are now finished, ongoing or dumped. I have started two new knitting projects. More on these soon.

I also mentioned a long-held desire to write a management book.

Over the last month I had a go at this and it never really took off, so that idea is on the shelf. However my son Gus suggested I write Fabrickated – the book. I thought it was his way of making mirth, at my expense. Ha ha ha. I nearly fell off my chair.

Then he said he wasn’t joking – he offered to do the editing and design and to provide encouragement and support.  I started thinking about it. And rather than aspiring to be the publishing sensation of the year I had a simple thought –

Why couldn’t I MAKE a book?

As a kid I was always making books. Full of drawings, paintings, little stories, italic writing, jokes, maps, diagrams, with tickets and wrappers – like a scrap book, but more writing. It’s a simple pleasure, and there is something adorable about a one-of-a-kind, handwritten book.  My own books were much more eclectic – including the odd autograph, prized photograph and sections in code. And I proudly let family and friends read them. I also wrote a few plays and poems that were sometimes performed to any adults who might give me ten minutes. Can you see where I am going with this?

I was blogging before blogs were invented.

I am a show off! I love writing down what I am thinking or making and getting a reaction. I wanted to be an actress as a kid, but today I get lots of pleasure from public speaking (part of my job) and from all types of communication. It makes me feel more alive – and although supportive, kind enthusiasm is always very welcome I do invite criticism as I am always keen to do better. The blog has allowed me to connect with others and the discussion at the bottom is always the best bit – as I listen to ten or twelve voices I just feel like I am at a party and I find it so stimulating and fun.

So I don’t know exactly what I want to preserve from the blog – it may just be a feeling of having a little party – or it maybe grabbing some of the best posts and re-presenting them with the benefit of the feedback you have provided me with. But this is going to be a new project for me (and one that combines perfectly with the photography course)!

Fabrickated book
Glued to my computer

I am going to write up my progress up every week or two in case the idea of making a book appeals to others, and just to share the journey, and keep myself to task.

I don’t know how it will turn out, and maybe I will never publish it. I know I will need some help from my family and friends, and you will all be in the book, one way or another (with sufficient protection of your privacy). Also I may test out some of my ideas as I go – I trust your wisdom to help me learn and grow and develop as I embark on a new venture.

I am so excited!



28 Responses

  1. Lyn

    Go Kate! You are Wonder Woman in hand-made! I firmly believe that you can achieve anything you set your mind to. Let’s plan a meet up and as a newly published author, I’ll be really happy to help and give the benefit of what a learned along the way. ?

  2. Annieloveslinen

    Good thinking, as you say it fits in with your photography venture and will be one place for your interests. Editing your blog in this way will help to coalesce your ideas and give birth to new ones. In another life you would be a magazine editor your wide interests and enthusiasm for learning is infectious.

  3. Marianne

    I remember the days when my husband did a merger and the times I wrote a book and am happy these two didn’t coincide (let alone be done by one person). My husband dealt with the emotional load by laying new floors, which worked really well. The strict deadlines for the book took over my entire life, leaving no space for any creative outlet. Needless to say I didn’t enjoy the process as much as I could have. I hope self publishing means you can avoid imposing deadlines on your project. Enjoy writing your book!

    • fabrickated

      Thank you for your very interesting comment Marianne, and congratulations on your book publishing achievement, only to be matched by floor laying! I set myself some strict deadlines as I believe I need quite alot of structure in order to achieve the writing at all. But this way I am free to readjust if necessary. The self publishing process is very interesting!

  4. Karen of Fifty Dresses

    I firmly believe what we choose to do as children is an indicator of what we should do as adults. Sounds like the seed was planted long ago and is ready to grow under your newly awakened enthusiasm! This will be fun to follow!

    • fabrickated

      There is much in this Karen. I heard Bryan Cranston speaking about his book, and his view is go back to your passion as a child or young person. Did you make clothes as a child?

      The thing is I did so many things as a kid that still thrill me today, but making a book was one of them and I determined to see if I can pull it off.

  5. Lynn Mally

    Well, speaking as someone who has written two books (although of the academic variety), I much prefer blogging. The format allows you a lot of freedom, while books need much more planning and concentration. But if this idea has been percolating for a long time, maybe it is time to give it a go!

    • fabrickated

      Thanks for priceless feedback Lynn, and I really enjoy blogging too, for the reasons you mention. But I am hoping for some cross fertilization. And your book on American Age Fashion in due course. And as you say “give it a go!”. Maybe that should be my motto – what is the worst thing that can happen? I could fail. So what!

  6. Gill

    When I read your blog I’m always reminded of the expression “if you wants something done, ask a busy woman”
    Look forward to reading about your progress! x

    • fabrickated

      Ha ha ha. I am busy, but I find there are different types of busy. I can’t allow some of my work concerns to seep too much into my weekends as I would get no rest or change of focus. Using the weekends productively absolutely helps me get back to work on Mondays, revived. I am curious to see how I would cope with “retirement”.

  7. Ellen

    I can’t wait to read the book! Lots of style dissections, please! Excited for you, though I would also have found your management book useful.

    • fabrickated

      Hi Ellen – I am hoping you will be in it. I would like to use your question an my response on business casual – and if you have tried it, or rejected it, what happened. And a photograph would be nice, if you were willing.

      I would like to put some style dissections in there, or have more on the blog. But I can’t think of any interesting subjects. Please make some suggestions of who you would like dissected. I have tended to choose political and business people rather than “celebs”, with a sprinkling of royalty.

  8. talliswoman

    What a great idea! You can certainly sign me up for a copy. I’ve also published an (academic) book – you seem to have a particularly well-published readership here. No doubt a reflection on the stimulating content or your blog!

    • fabrickated

      Well done on your book Talliswoman. What an achievement. Thank you for your kind comment on my blog. I am not sure if I will be able to distribute overseas due to shipping and postage costs etc. I may need to investigate if I can make this into an ebook, but it is full colour and not something that lends itself to Kindle. Something else for me to discover.

  9. Sue

    Have you thought about writing a chapter in a management book rather than ditching the whole idea? It is a much more short term project, and it will give you an entré into management publishing. I’ve had several text books and book chapters published (all part of being an academic), and it is a scary but rewarding experience. I still get royalty payments for a couple of my chapters! I love the idea of Fabrickated: the book! Some of your posts are really informative and it would be wonderful to have a collection at hand. As an avid collector of books, I would totally invest!

    • fabrickated

      Thanks for this great suggestion. Actually the management book may be written one day so I am putting notes together. Maybe the best thing is if I get others to do chapters of my book. Following your feedback I will approach a few people.

      And thank you for the encouragement about Fabrickated – the book. I will hold you in mind as my ideal reader Sue – maybe you could be a beta reader for me. I am hoping to include some patterns and have you read them through would be a great help.

      Thanks for all your support and encouragement. I really appreciate it.

  10. mrsmole

    The first step to completing a project is the passion to start it. You have the passion, you just need to make the time but busy women do always find the time to work on their own projects. You tackle projects with such enthusiasm and gusto, Kate…this will all fall into place and you will learn so much about yourself along the way. Good Luck, Girl!

  11. Chris

    Your enthusiasm for new projects is very inspiring Kate. I have sometimes thought that I must have some type of attention deficit, as I flit from project to project, but have started to recognise that it’s a thirst for learning and trying new things. I don’t know anyone in my life with such a drive to learn and experiment, which is probably why I’m drawn to your blog.
    Interesting comment too on returning to what you were drawn to as a child – I had (and still have!) an almost obsessive urge to make things. I also love seeing how a bunch of processes combine to create something 3 dimensional.
    I look forward to seeing your book come together .x

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