Sunday, July 7, 2019

Yopping Update - Week #1 - Testing Testing

On strict orders from my daughter I was not to knit for a week.  My arm has been very sore and I have to teach starting in a week and I need to be more mobile for sure.

So.....what did I do? 

I spent hours re-editing my novel and then I took it to the printer to get it ready to give copies to beta readers.  What?  I know, right?  I also sent pdfs to three readers and it seems that after almost four years this whole novel thing might be becoming a reality.

What is a beta reader you might ask?  I will let Wikipedia answer:   

"A beta reader is a test reader of an unreleased work of literature giving feedback with the angle of an average reader to the author about remaining issues."

Now I want to start organizing my poetry into a single collection.  I thought I had already done this, but it must have been a dream because I cannot find it on any computer anywhere.  How weird is that?

There was a tiny bit of crafting - crochet, and after trying for a little I switched back to my left hand only.  These produce bags are quick and easy to make.  Good television crafting once the increase rounds are done.

Two done and the third just needs the handles.

I had an epiphany about my fisherwoman's sweater this past week.  It seems for me that knitting truly is a metaphor for my life.

I started this sweater with wool I had re-purposed from a sweater that didn't fit me anymore.  It was a long line vest, and I figured I had enough yarn to make a cable-knit sweater for camping.

Once the back was almost complete I started to wonder if I woud have enough wool to finish it.  I stopped knitting the back about two inches from the end, and cast on the two sleeves.  When the sleeves were almost finished I weighed the parts that were already knit.  Then I weighed how much yarn I have left.

I think I don't have enough yarn, but rather than soldier on to see if the imaginary is reality I just put the whole thing on time out.


What is the worst that can happen?  I can either make the sweater shorter if I need to because I haven't cast off the back as this point, or I can go and buy a suitable yarn to finish the sweater.

It is a camping sweater afterall, not something I want to exhibit at Vogue knitting.

This got me to thinking about what I have been going through over the past year.   I have been looking at what strategies I have been using in my life, that no longer serve me, that I wish to let go, or change.

Change is hard.  It is easy to go back to old patterns, or put things in a time out.  It is harder just to move forward and face whatever it is I need to face head on.

If I don't see this sweater through to the end I won't ever know if maybe  a) I will win at the yarn chicken, or b)  I won't win at yarn chicken but I will experience the success of finding a solution of either modifying the pattern, or finding some yarn to finish it.  It is natural undyed aran wool so I really don't think getting a close enough match will be a problem.

Besides, I can't go back.  The old sweater that didn't fit anymore cannot be put back to the way it was and the new sweater is shaping up quite nicely.  Change is not comfortable.

Pretending the problem isn't there won't make it go away.

Are you listening, Mary-Anne?

Yup, I am listening, and as soon as I can knit again I will cast on the front and let the chips fall where they may.

To following the other intrepid souls that are going into Year Nine with me check out their posts here.


  1. It’s like it’s all meant to be...indecision over the jumper yarn chicken issue = rested arm, resting arm = time for novel. I’m excited to find out how your novel gets on. What genre is it?

  2. Ohh the novel sounds close to being ready! Good idea to have a rest and then hopefully you will be able to tackle the sweater (which is looking fabulous by the way). Love your produce bags, I need more myself.

  3. I'm glad you are listening to your daughter. I know it must be hard. But it must be very exciting about your book.

  4. Love the new graphic Mary-Anne, meant to say that on the list post. How wonderful that the time off knitting gave you the time to get your novel ready for the beta readers, I'm thrilled for you and hope to does well. Change is never easy but I am a firm believer in moving forward anyway one step at a time, but boy it's not easy and there are lots of times when I sure would prefer to just stop so I applaud you and in the case of your jumper I think you'll find a solution but either way your jumper will be finished.

  5. I just posted about your list from last week. As for this week....I'm thinking that maybe your arm being too sore to knit was "prodding" to finish that novel and also to gather up your poetry? Ya think? I bet as soon as that is done you will find a miraculous healing in your arm. I've seen it in my own life...rejection is either protection or direction. So glad to be sharing another year with you!

  6. I DID wonder what a beta reader was. Thank you! I hope you get useful feedback and your book in print soon! I appreciate how your sweater is a metaphor for life. Good food for thought there. And I'm really glad that you're giving your arm a rest. I hope you're good to go when teaching starts back up!

  7. Good job obeying your daughter with resting your arm! And Hooray for your novel. My son-in-law is in the middle of writing a YA series and is looking for a publisher... it is a lot of work!

  8. I so hope your novel gets published. Just from the excerpts posted on your blog, I thought it quite interesting. As for your sweater.........Great thought process. It is truly a lovely pattern you are making. You go girl (after the shoulder settles down a bit)

  9. You go on putting yourself out there.

  10. That is very exciting about the novel! And I love your produce bags -- very earth friendly.

  11. I love the parallels between your approach to the sweater and tthe approach to other aspects of life. Fibre for thought!


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