Thursday, March 29, 2007

Seems Like a Nightmare

Still waiting to hear from doll magazine about the flower fairy pattern. I hate to be seen as a pest but it looks like I'm going to have to email them. I should have 2 weeks ago just to see if she got the original email I sent.

After dealing with magazines for more than 10 years I know some editors take months to make a decision while others let you know right away one way or the other. This is the biggest reason I stopped sending patterns to magazines for the longest time. It's so hard to wait and then find out, no they can't use it right now but maybe later or if you'd be willing to make a few changes we might consider it or it's perfect except for the color. It makes me crazy! Another nightmare is when they purchase all rights to the pattern but you never see it in print or if they did print it they never bothered to sent you the free issues you are supposed to get. But here's the worst, I sent tatted bracelets to a magazine for photographing and while they had them, they were bought and closed down. I never got paid or the bracelets back!

Oh well, wish me luck!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Dreaming of Fairy Bears & More

I didn't realize it had been so long since my last post. I have been busy writing the directions for another pattern, working on a tatting book I started over 10 years ago (and just can't seem to finish!), and yes, I'm spending more time than I need to working on stories I have no intention of ever trying to get published.

Here's a pic of the fairy bears-

They're made from Kunin fuzzy felt. I love to work with this felt. I know most people prefer fur but when your making a small bear and then sewing or gluing decorations to it, I found that any of the Kunin felts are better to use. I mean really, why waste some expensive mohair fabric? I haven't decided whether to try to get this published in Teddy Bear and Friends or go to Soft Dolls & Animals. I'm thinking the felt will keep the teddy bear magazine from being interested.

Have you noticed that the only good teddy bear mags are from Australia? Filled with great patterns and info, why don't we have one like this in the states? I'm really unhappy with the magzines that are published here or should I say lack of. So many went out of publication. I miss McCall's Needlwork and the doll magazines published by House of White Birches, then there's The Cloth Doll, and even MiMi's Let's Talk about Dollmaking. So sad they're not around anymore.

I mentioned the tatting book that's been driving me crazy for over 10 years. I just can't seem to stick with it. I guess one of the reasons is all the tatting that has to be done. I like to try each pattern at least 2 times to make sure I've got the thread amounts right. When I'm tatting up big doily size pieces it takes me forever to finish them. My shoulders and wrists start to hurt so I have to put it away and then I don't get back to it for another year. I only have 3 more pieces to tat then I can add them to the directions I'm already written. I did all the graphics in my old Paint Shop Pro soft ware. I love this program, well at least I love my old version 7. I never bothered to get a newer one to load on the new XP computer so when I need to use it, I fire up the old win98. Which also explains why I have no pictures or graphics to post here. They're on the old computer and I'm on the new.

I just can't stop the writing. It fills my need for a hobby. I have 3 stories going right now (same as always, can't work on one project at a time.!) All I need now is for Barnes & Noble to start up a mystery club (fingers crossed, hope, hope!). I mostly read mysteries so that's what I'm writing except for the time travel one. That one is so fun because I'm writing it from the main characters point of view, well actually she's telling the story. I read a book called 'Him, Her, Him Again, The End of Him' by Patrica Marx and loved this style of writing. Maybe all this fiction writing will help me with my directions for my patterns, at least what I'm telling myself!

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Dreaming of Writing-so many books, so little time !

I know I should be working on my latest pattern but I started getting involved with Barnes and Nobles' book clubs and they've become my latest excuse not to. Here's the link: I did take the free classes they used to offer. I guess they decided this new format would be easier to do. I pretty much lurk and read posts in many of the clubs but I'm mostly interested in the writing clubs. Since so many of my hobbies have ended up as part of my business, taking the writing classes they used to offer and now these book clubs are something fun for me to do.

I enjoy reading and will read almost anything. I'll even finish books I don't like just to learn what it is about the writing I don't like. There was a time when I even gave up reading because I had read too many books I didn't like. These were best sellers but I really couldn't see why. I would find that the first book the author wrote was good but those written after weren't. It seems like so many writers pen series of books about the same characters and I was finding that they would repeat things from the previous books or even the same book over and over. It began to seem like filler so the book would be bigger. I won't name the authors who put out my fire for reading. If you want to discuss writers and books you love and hate go over to B&N's site.

I have J.K. Rowling to thank for reawakening my need to read. After hearing so much about the first Harry Potter book I bought a mid-sized paperback of the Sorcerer's Stone and was so pleased with her writing I started to read and write again. It was great to read something that didn't have things over explained or over described. I've enjoyed the rest of the series, too.

I read a lot of mysteries but don't have a favorite author or series. I prefer the cozy style to the PI or cop mysteries. My favorite book is 'To Kill A Mockingbird'. I wish Harper Lee had written more but this one is so good I can understand her reluctance to write another.

I was at the library yesterday and picked up a few books even though I have shelves of ones I still haven't read. I love to go to the local libraries for books, magazines, DVDs, and my favorite- the annual book sales! I've been known to buy so many books that when I get home I find I already own some of them but just haven't read them. I havn't read them because I keep going to the libraries to check out the new ones. I tend to go to 3 of my local libraries to browse but I love how I can get books from libraries all over the state sent to my favorite one so I can pick them up to read. This has lead to long lists of books to get and read! With the snow and extreme cold temps we're supposed to get all this week I'm glad for all the books and magazines I have to curl up with! All I'll need are the dogs, a warm afghan, and a cup of steaming hot chocolate hazelnut coffee.

I am catching up on hand sewing right now. It's amazing how many ufos (unfinished projects) I have. Between various embroidery, quilting, tatting, and all kinds of sewing projects, I have enough to stay busy for a year without starting anything new. This morning I was sorting thru some of the projects when I came across some things (2 jackets, 2 pairs of shorts, 4 cloth book covers, and 5 purses) I had cut out but then put away because I started on something else. After finding all these projects I decided not to even look at the stack of dolls in various states of progress. I'm going to try to finish one of these ufos every 2 weeks. I decided on 2 because 1 week just didn't seem long enough. Whenever I feel overwhelmed by everything I tend to put everything away so I don't have to deal with it, but now I've decided it's time to finish stuff or get rid of it. I have a feeling when I reopen the ebay store, I'll be selling off a lot of excess sewing and crafting supplies!