Finally, The Project's book aspect has a face—which is to say, a cover. There may be minor changes, but what you see here has run the primary gauntlet of approvals and revisions, and I've been given permission to share it:
The book is due out in May 2011. The stage it is currently at is called "first pages," which is a rough layout of the entire work. We're working on callouts and captions; on cutting bits of text (ideally without cutting any actual information) to fit some parts of the book within the design constraints; and on writing other pieces to fill in gaps (where there's open space tempting us to include supplementary information). Yes, we have been working on this relatively short phase of the project since October 22. Even this is not a small job.
We all—Carol and I and the folks at Storey—have a couple of major organizational issues to resolve to eliminate conflicts between the design concept (which is stunningly beautiful) and the way the information needs to be presented (i.e., between the book's visual and textual components). But we are getting very, very close to having a book.
It's scheduled to go to the printer in January.
Last night, I shipped pages i through 217 of this iteration back to the publisher. By the end of the evening, I had completed through page 328. Pages 218 through 328 felt almost ready to go before I had to make up the FedEx box, but I decided to lower my stress levels and not try to push through to 328 in time to get that piece into the shipment; there is plenty for everyone at Storey to work on for a while in the box I sent.
It was a good decision. I wasn't done with the "almost" parts until nearly 8 p.m. (The last FedEx pickup was at 5:15.) Sometimes age brings with it small amounts of wisdom ("been there, done that, maybe I'll skip the t-shirt this time").
Co-author Carol Ekarius and I are still processing pages 329 to the end, which is roughly page 438, although some of those final pages will hold the index and other back matter, and therefore we don't have to deal with them now.
On another topic, yesterday morning I received notification that the U.K. Knit Camp Tutors' Fund had transferred to my bank account enough money to cover the cost of my airfare to the U.K. in August. The expense has been sitting on my credit card, a situation I share with most of the other tutors.
What an amazing, generous, heart-warming set of actions on the parts of many people the fund represents. All of the tutors in the group will be having their travel costs covered. I am very grateful, and would like to thank everyone who has participated in helping with this effort, either by contributing directly or by sending good thoughts.
Many, many thanks.
And now I'm teaching in Michigan soon (not the same classes that I taught in Scotland) and I have so many ideas that my head is bursting with them, but they're not yet organized enough to present to the folks who will be attending. Plus the rest of the caption-writing will be back on my desk before I know it, undoubtedly before I leave, and again I'll need to get to that task so we don't hold up anyone else's work flow and prevent the book from going to press on time. So I'd better get back to work.
I just had to take a break and share the several types of good news.