I've had to make a decision today. This current book is stressing me beyond believe and have needed to weigh things up a bit and try and take the pressure off. It's making me unhappy and tired and depressed and it's taking me away from my family too much.
So. The book had a provisional release date for September. I've emailed my publisher (who is wonderful, might I add) to say that I can't promise it by that date. She understands, she's a knitting designer/author too. I'm not giving up on the book as then I would feel even more like a failure, I'm just gonna take some time out and the pressure off. I'm capable of finishing it, but not like this.
I can't say when it will be published, and today I don't even want to say it will be published (except it will, today's a bad day) but I will say I'm going to relax some and hang out with the boys more. Maybe I'll work on a few designs, and hopefully I'll be reminded why I do this. Being the only breadwinner adds to the pressure, as does this climate, but I'm pretty damn sure I should be enjoying myself whilst working, not killing myself.
Meet my nemesis. It looks very simple and gentle and really doesn't look like a problem. Except it is. And this is what's been screwing with my brain so much recently.
See that little stitch by the arrow? That's the devil. It has taken me sooo long to explain how it gets there, what it is and how it affects your grafting. It won't bother you if you're doing stocking stitch or garter stitch graftings, it only makes an appearance when you're changing between knit and purl stitches within one row (which, erm, will be most of the stitches covered in the book)
If this little stitch isn't in the right place or isn't dealt with correctly it completely buggers up your graft. It has to be just so. If you're working out a graft yourself, playing it by ear, it tends to be kinder.. but forcing it into a recipe, a stitch pattern, something that can be repeated and relied upon, well, it needs to be tamed.
It's all in the preparation. And I have to explain this thoroughly, so thoroughly, without being too techy, but enough to say what will happen if you don't set the preparation up correctly. If I don't explain it right in the book, if I can't put it into simple terms then the rest of the book won't mean so much.
And what is it? This is a hybrid stitch, half V, half bump. It's what you get when you remove a provisional cast-on from a row of stitches where knit and purl stitches are mixed. It's the under-side of a purl-to-knit section of knitting (it has a partner in crime that is it's own reflection, and occurs on the underside of knit-to-purl stitch patterns) So you can imagine the merry hell this little blighter will cause in the textured stitches chapter if I don't get this section right!
It's the key to avoiding the half-stitch jog, but only if all the other factors are correct. Y'see, I've been experimenting with this little blighter; placing it differently, seeing what it's capable off, what will happen if it's on the back needle instead of the front, what will happen if it's one stitch earlier or one stitch later. Hence the brain-fry. I've had too, so I can make sense of it. Once this is all done and documented, the rest of the book will slot into place. Mostly.
But I'm not quite there yet.
Meantime, I've opened a bottle of beer and am sitting back.