Sometimes, life gets in the way of all the things we wish to do.  Even when the “life” part is really, really good, there are still only 24 hours in a day, and part of those 24 hours must be devoted to sleep.  The older I get, the more of the “s” word I require.  A simple fact of my life!

I’m delighted to get back to my blog!  I look forward to this being a very regular part of my routine (as though I have a routine!).  Actually, I’m looking forward to developing a routine, and blogging will most certainly be part of it!

So, what have I been up to for the past 12+ months?  Pretty exciting stuff, I think!  I’ve been WRITING A BOOK!  Yep, a real book with a real publisher (Martingale Publishing).  A quilting book!  A dream of mine coming true!  I’m still pinching myself.

Just how does one get to write a book?  Well, allow me to share some of my story:

If you know me and my quilt making habits at all, you know I love to piece patchwork!  Over the past several years, I’ve been playing a lot with hexagons and related shapes.  Love, love, love them!!!!  My friend, Donna Lynn Thomas, had been encouraging me for months and months to put together a book proposal, but I was hesitant.  Scared stiff, really.  So, I kept putting it off.

Spring Quilt Market was slated to be in Kansas City in May, 2012 – right in my “back yard”.  I decided that if I could get an appointment with a Martingale representative at Spring Market, I’d take it as a sign.  So, I downloaded the proposal packet from the Martingale website, and I began to put together my proposal.  I contacted Karen Burns, the Acquisitions Editor at Martingale Publishing to see if there was any way I could meet with her while she was at Market.  Karen was kind and encouraging.  She gathered some information about me and my quilt making interests.  Then, we arranged to meet on Sunday afternoon of Market.  Holy cow!  Now, I had to get my proposal finished!

As the meeting day approached, I put the finishing touches on my proposal.  One of the really great aspects of writing a proposal is that it helps one firm up their vision of their book.  Vague concepts and ideas begin to coalesce into a specific plan with more defined focus.  I also pulled together examples of my work related to the topic of my book proposal to take with me to the meeting so that there was tangible evidence of my skill-set and my vision.

As I approached the Martingale booth, my stomach was in knots!  Karen quickly put me at ease with her warm, welcoming smile and by asking questions about my ideas.  She allowed me to lay out my concept and share my blocks and quilts.  I also learned that the professionals at Martingale are not only experts at book publishing, they are quilt makers!!!  They “speak the language” and understand exactly what goes into the planning and making of quilts!  How cool is that?!?!?!

By the end of our first meeting, Karen let me know that she was interested in pitching my book proposal to the proposal committee at Martingale, the first official step in the acceptance process.  Of course, I was thrilled!!!

Over my next series of posts, I’ll share more of my experiences with the proposal process and the actual writing process.  If you have any desire to write a quilt making book (or any book, for that matter!), I strongly encourage you to go for it!!  I hope my experience will provide encouragement and inspiration for you!  Remember:  “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”  Laozi, Chinese philosopher, c 604-531 BC.  And, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.”  Not sure of the origin of that quote, but it was a favorite of Mamo, my paternal grandmother (and quilt maker extraordinaire!).

Until next time, PIECE & joy!!!

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