Sometimes I really wonder why I write needlework books. It certainly isn't for the pay - don't let anyone tell you craft authors get rich. But money isn't everything to me - personal satisfaction and creative fulfillment have a lot to do with why I do what I am doing right now. My sisters and friends are begging me to go back to my pottery because they miss collecting pieces. Unforunately, I don't have a dirty studio for my wheel right now. With pottery, a dirty studio is necessary. Fabric, yarn and clay really don't mix. Maybe someday, somewhere. Painting with oils and gouache - yes, that calls me on other days. But there's a whole other set of marketing challenges.
So for now, I toil on knitting and stitching. I've got a reputation that I have built over the years and it seems a shame to throw it away. One of the reasons I fell into this author gig is that it fits in with my current life of raising a little girl out in the boonies and tending to bunches of farm animals and farm activities. My family is the most important thing in my life - work has got to fit around our little family.
I do get a certain sense of enjoyment and fulfillment proposing a book, designing and making the projects, working with my knitters and editors, and seeing the book in the printed form. By the time I am done with one book, I usually have an idea for another and so I just go on. My books are like giant art and craft projects and you know how fun that can be. At least for now....
And then there are days like the other day when I found this post written by Susan of Making Do. Her daughter Shaylin made this adorable felt kitty using instructions in my book Kids' Embroidery. I contacted her and asked her if it would be alright to write about her project. Susan said Shaylin made the entire kitty herself and has plans for more kitties. Her favorite part was tying on the whiskers. This just made my day. It's one of the reasons that I do books. Sharing my skills with others in book form helps me spread the stitching knowledge I have enjoyed for my entire life. When I see such success and know that Shaylin may stitch the rest of her life, that is better than a million dollars.