Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Visionary mid-way

Well, here I am, up in the gorgeous San Juan Islands, at my second visionary retreat. These retreats are put on by the fabulous self-publishing maven Cat Bordhi and are invitation-only to designers with book ideas that Cat thinks have promise. It's inspiring and exhausting all at the same time. There's a fabulous group of people here and lots of great book ideas (of course, I'm sworn to secrecy so you won't be hearing about any of them here).

This has been a bit of an up-and-down experience for me, for sure. It's the longest I've ever been away from the kids and there is plenty of time for reflection. It's good, because it's very nice to have lots of time available to think about things. But there's also plenty of time to miss my family and Portland-based support network. It's also very challenging for me to be in a big group of people that I don't know very well. I had this same problem last year, to some extent, and I've become wonderful friends with so many of the people I met here. I just wish I wasn't such an introvert. There are some very extroverted folks in this group, and I'm so envious of them. Fortunately, I've had plenty of time to reconnect with people I love dearly but don't see very often. I've done some good networking and been inspired, even if the group sessions are quite exhausting for me.

One big thing that has come out of this session for me involves the book proposal I was supposed to be writing this week. On the first night here, I volunteered to talk about what I've been up to over the past year (and I was happy to do it then so I didn't have to worry about it all week - I did the same exact thing with my big presentation last year). Of course I mentioned the big book idea and that I was reluctantly going to submit it to a publisher. You can guess what happened here...they told me that I COULD NOT give it to a publisher and had to self-publish. So, now I'm working on the beginning stages of an actual book, not just a book proposal.

There - I said it! I'm writing a book. It's a terrifying thought, but I'm going to start with what I do best, which is design. The subject is something I think will come very easily to me, and I've got lots of great yarn companies that I can now approach for yarn support. I've also got several ideas that won't fit in the book but will definitely go well with my pattern line.

And now, we're going to go drink wine and eat some cheese. The lake is glassy, the sky is amazing, good on ya!


Anonymous Karen said...

It has been a treat to reconnect, and bounce ideas - despite the hurdles of introversion.

And thanks also for the tip on the Introvert Advantage book! Powell's, here I come!

10:09 PM  
OpenID guiltypleasures said...

Oh I'm so thrilled to see that you are going to self-publish. Sounds like your adventures with Cat are going to pay off in a big way!

12:22 AM  
Blogger Theresa said...

I'm so glad they convinced you to self-pub! You know how I feel on the subject ;) And you also know I'm going to pick your brain when you get back home, LOL! I've been working on my book this week, and feeling overwhelmed, so your enthusiasm is giving me a boost :)

5:56 AM  
Blogger Yarnhog said...

I always find it exhausting to spend extended time really thinking about my life, but it is a valuable opportunity.

It's tough being an introvert. I've read that only about 10% of the U.S. population is introverted, and of course society is totally geared toward extroverts. (How many times have you heard someone say, "Don't be shy!") I have an introverted kid and an extroverted one, and it's heartbreaking how differently the two are treated.

7:29 AM  
Blogger Tiffany said...

Self-publish sounds great!! Can't wait to hear about your journey to that end. I completely feel you on the introvert part. Sometimes I think that the Sea Socks cruise will be great because I'll be around lots of knitters and then other times I can see my mom and I hiding somewhere just because we are so darned introverted. :) But sometimes I can be an extrovert with enough coffee so who knows what will happen.

8:54 AM  
Blogger Helga said...

Good luck, Chrissy. I know the book is going to be just beautiful with all the great design ideas that you have.

6:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You go!! I just can't wait to see it. L

7:33 PM  
Blogger sarah / knot another hat said...

You go girl! I have total confidence in you that your book will be spectacular!

8:32 AM  
Blogger msubulldog said...

Yay--a Knittin' Mom book! :) Have a great time at the retreat.
*There's an article on self-publishing in the latest issue of MAKE if any commenters are interested. :)

2:52 PM  
Blogger kay said...

Hi Chrissy! I was directed to your blog by your former co-worker Sharon at http://chickenlipsknitting.blogspot.com/ when she saw my blogpost about how much I absolutely LOVED your pattern for the Snowflake Socks in the Fall 2007 Interweave Knits. This was my first try at Fair Isle and I must say it was an absolute pleasure to make this pattern! If you are interested, I posted a couple of pictures on my blog: http://byhookorbycrook.blogspot.com/

Take care, and thanks again for such a wonderful pattern!

12:43 PM  

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