There’s something that I’ve been desperately excited to tell you about, and now – at long last – I can.
Next year, Dover Press are publishing a very colourful new book about stranded knitting. And the author is, erm, me.
You could possibly make a case that I’m biased on the matter, but I think it’s going to be a cool book. With a respectful nod to traditional approaches such as Fair Isle, it’ll strip stranded work back to its core principles and encourage people to take their colourwork in new directions. Oh yikes, I’m starting to sound like a book blurb already. That can’t be good. I hope I don’t start talking that way all the time, e.g:-
Me: “Twinnage, it’s breakfast time. In the kitchen, you’ll find I’ve given the concept of lightly-cooked bread a new lease of life with the addition of fruit-based accompaniments.”
Twinnage, rolling their eyes: “Toast and jam, Mum. You’ve made toast and jam again, haven’t you?”
Anyway, I’ve been signed up to write the book, and its content has been planned in detail. Like everything I write (including this blog) I draft with pen and paper, because there’s something about a computer screen that kills my creativity. So the house is filling up with notebooks full of diagrams, and snatches of text, and notes on gauge, AND IF ANYONE IN THIS FAMILY STEALS ANY MORE PAGES OF MY NOTEBOOKS TO USE FOR DRAWING DINOSAURS, THEN I SHALL BE PROPERLY CROSS, OK?
The whole thing is rather exciting. I’ve always been evangelical about the fun and possibilities of stranded knitting, and now I get to infiltrate bookshops across the world with the message.
This has been in the pipeline for well over a year, and I hope you’ll understand why I didn’t say anything sooner. The publishers wisely thought I should wait until contracts had been signed, and you don’t want to mess with these publisher types because they’re hardcore. Think about it: if you cross them, they could ruin the novel you’re reading by telling you its plot-twisty ending when you’re only half way through. Or they could move the bookmark in the worthy-but-dull book on existentialist philosophy you’re doggedly ploughing through, so you have no idea whether you’ve nearly finished the wretched thing and you begin to question whether you have really been reading it and indeed whether you can even prove the book exists…
And, in extremis, they could even give you a really annoying paper cut that doesn’t heal for several days. Seriously folks, don’t mess with these people.
So when my editor suggested that on balance, it would be sensible not to mention the book at too early a stage, I kept very, very quiet.
Most of my knitting will be book-related over the next few months. The problem is that I’ll only be able to show you hints and mini-glimpses of what I’m making. So this post is partly to say please understand that I’m not being annoyingly coy on purpose, and that if you can be patient (for a whole year!) then the final product will hit a bookshop near you in 2021. But for now, I can’t give away the content before the thing has even been published… otherwise those scary publisher people might come and rearrange my bookshelves. And quite frankly, that’s not a risk I’m willing to take.