Tuesday, February 18, 2014

How NOT to publish a book

You know how it goes - you wake up in the morning. You have plans - you may not want to do them, and some you can get away with not doing, others you have no choice. And then there is that PLOT TWIST thing that happens.

I am luxuriating in bed yesterday morning (OK - I was exhausted) and trying to talk myself into going to the gym. I hadn't been in two weeks and really needed to get my butt going, but I wasn't feeling up to dealing with a full class with a tough instructor. Oh well - just get up and face the music. I dragged myself out of bed and into the car.

As soon as I saw the parking lot, I KNEW the class was cancelled. And why? Because it was a STAT holiday which I had forgotten. Oh crap - well I am here - I might as well work out anyway. Verified at the desk - NO CLASS. Now I only have bike shorts and bike shoes so that eliminate a number of things - I hop on a bike and casually pedal for a half hour. The music videos on the TV were BORING and the TV with the Olympics was further down so I couldn't see it that well. And I had left my iPod in the car or I could have at least listened to the Olympics.

The best part of the gym - the locker room was so empty - heck at times I was the ONLY ONE there. I had a nice long sit in the steam room. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

Then out to the car to face the day (and YES I was glad that I got to the gym).  As I walk to the car - OH CRAP - a flat tire. Seriously?????    Oh yes - That little sensor in my car keeps going off so I just ignore it now and then somehow the darn tire is FLAT.  I have had LOADS of trouble with the tires on this car.

WAIT - it gets better!!!!!     I decide that I can get to the gas station that is just around the corner. I get there and there is NO WAY that air is going in that tire. Seriously?????   I have no idea whether I was brain dead, but I could hear the air going in, but nothing happened. I know that sounds weird.   Now what????

I live four KM away from the gym, so I drove home slowly praying that the tire wouldn't roll off the rim - it was flat, but NOT riding on the rim. Hmmmmmm - well I will just take DH's car since he is away this week.  When I announced that plan to M - she freaked out because she had plans for DH's car (as hers is in the body shop - won't go into details - but everyone was OK). Oh CRAP - now what are we going to do????

OK - let's call CAA - we can get them to change the tire and I will get the other one fixed after Monday Motivators. I call CAA and they say NO PROBLEM, then I remember that my car has one of those anti-theft lugs on the wheel and I do not know where the wrench is for it.

(The kids had a flat tire with my car in the summer and for some reason, they took the wrench out of the car. They handed it to me when I was in the house a couple of months later and I don't know where I put it!!!!!!!)    NOPE - CAA does NOT have access to that anti-theft LUG wrench.    OH CRAP.

Well - I'll just call the dealer and get a new wrench - then CAA can fix the tire. Call the dealer and GUESS WHAT????????    It's a STAT HOLIDAY and they are closed!!!!!!!!    Oh CRAP!!!!!!

So M drove me to Monday Motivators in DH's car. Did she bring her house key?  Did she bring her purse with driver's license???   Nope!!!!!!!!!!!

BUT the best part of that whole thing - when we went to Tim's - it is ROLL UP THE RIM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And there are bonus rolls on every cup!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have to deal with the tire issue today - I figure the easiest way - get CAA to tow the car to the dealer. They can fix the tire, and I'll buy a new wrench and they can come and pick me up with the car is ready.  Good grief - nothing is easy!!!!!

I like BOOKS. I like to read books - both fiction and non-fiction. I like to buy books, but I also borrow books from the library. Sometimes people loan me their books and sometimes people just give me books that they no longer want.

It usually happens that during the year I read books from the library, but when I go away I read books from my shelf - then I can get rid of them while I am away.   I had taken SIX books with me when I went back to the farm. I did read FOUR of them. When I got home, I was putting the other two back on the shelf and thought I would organize that shelf and see what was there.

This is my FICTION reading shelf.   The bottom two rows are DOUBLE

Did a bit of math and there are approximately 125 books on those shelves.   So if I read ONE book a week - that means it will take more than TWO YEARS to read all those books. Let's not forget that some of those books are part of a series and I don't have all the series so would need to borrow the missing ones.    Hmmmmm - and I am reading other books?????   Can you tell me why?????   There were TWO books that two different people had lent me - I have them ready to give back. Both are part of a series and when I get to that book - I will just get it from the library.

I should be thinking twice about getting any new books from the library. I mean - really!!!!!!!!!!

Under normal circumstances, I can have upwards of thirty or forty books out from the library. Yes - it takes time to manage them all!!!!     Before I went away, I returned all but a couple. And the other day I finally located the MISSING book. It has been missing since before Christmas - so now I am all squared away with the library.

The missing book - now it is found and back in the library!!!!

Carol and I were chatting about quilting books the other day.  She was telling me about some interesting new books that she has recently purchased.  I said it would be nice if we actually had time to read those quilting books (so - STOP borrowing fiction books from the library - I hear you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

Anyway - she said she was going to carry one or two of the books in her travel bag and she would read while traveling.  That is a super idea!!!!!!!!!!  

So I thought - I really should get to reading the books I have borrowed from the guild. Last night I pulled out one and started to read.

Now here is the thing with quilt books. I am an experienced quilter - yet I am ALWAYS OPEN to learning something new. So when you get a book that talks about the basics - should the experienced quilter read them?????   I think it is a good idea because you never know whether you will learn some little trick, but at some point - you question whether the time spent reading is really worth the time you will save from the new trick.

I normally do not criticize books but I just cannot help myself.

The book in question is called Denyse Schmidt Quilts!   First off the title kind of puts me off!!!!!   That is also the name of her company.   She lists among her credits as having her quilts appearing in a number of very well known magazines - some VERY well known ones.

Denyse Schmidt quilts

The book is broken down into FOUR main sections - basic information in the first one, small projects in section two, quilts in section three and patterns in section four.

Since I am curious how others teach (and writing a non-fiction book is a form of teaching), I started to read and almost died.

This is how she recommends you rotary cut. The patterns are laid out like this (keep in mind - this is a modified log cabin block).  You have to ENLARGE the pattern pieces by 400%, then glue the paper patterns to card stock, then carefully cut out with a craft knife.

Patterns in the book that need to be enlarged by 400%

Next you lay out those pattern pieces on your fabric and using a pencil, mark the cut lines. THEN using rotary cutter and ruler to cut out the pieces.

Cutting out the pieces!!

I'm sorry - but WHAT is the purpose of the rotary cutter and rulers??????   To AVOID this whole paper pattern business.   SERIOUSLY??????     Some publisher published this????????      (now in fairness to the author and the patterns - there is a SLIGHT angle to some pieces so you need to do the above, but really - I don't think that angle adds anything except complexity!!!! - AND there are many other ways to get that slight angle than cutting this way!!!!!)

I won't go into details, but the pressing is horrible and I haven't gotten farther than that in the instructions.   I mean seriously - if you were a NEW quilter and you picked up this book - you would be doing yourself a HUGE disservice.

Now I did pick the book up because there were a couple of ideas for quilts that I really like. And look at the first project - it is the same card that I saw at the guild last week. Amazing how things show up everywhere. My guess is that someone got the idea from this book and passed it onto the guild.

Card project from the book. 

I am just going to take the idea of the blocks and quilts from the book and make up my own sizes.

Yesterday was Monday Motivators and we had a great day!   I am really really trying to get things done. I got the border on this small Underground Railroad quilt.    And I got the binding and the backing done as well.

It isn't mine, but I offered to complete it for someone else. (Long story) but this is the year to get those things done.

Then I spent last night trying to get myself ready for next Monday. I scanned the 2014 shelf which was SO EASY now that everything is labelled.  What could I get ready so that all I have to do is sew at Monday. That is my preferred way of working and I haven't been doing that so don't feel as productive as I could be.

Well - I have loads to get done today (including SHOVELING snow). Yeah!!!!!!!!!!!

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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