No Backing Out Now

This week, Interweave Knits sent me a PDF proof that contains my hat pattern they accepted for their 2014 Holiday Gifts issue.



My pattern. In Interweave Knits. On page 100. Laid out and formatted with three professional photos (the actual sample hat knit by me, modeled on a darling girl who looks like Pippa Middleton) and my name and the little note about my design inspiration set off in a box made with squiggly lines.

They sent this document to me so I could review my pattern and make any changes or comments. I found a few errors (I used to be a technical writer and editor, so I know how to review something to within an inch of its life), but mostly I noticed that they published only about half of what I sent them.

The editor, Lisa Shroyer, had asked for a men’s size in addition to the women’s, which I included in my pattern, but they didn’t use it. I gave tips for when to remove stitch markers and specified the exact number of the round on which you should make the crown decreases, both of which they left out. I also provided line-by-line written instructions, but they used only the chart. (Note: I include such helpful info in all of my self-published patterns.)

My writing has been published a few times, so I know that magazines have to shoehorn in as many features and advertisers as they can, but it’s still surprising and disappointing to see how much and what they cut.

As with most things accepted by a reputable publication, whether poetry or short story or recipe or hat pattern, there’s a “kill fee” should they decide not to publish it. It’s a fraction of the original fee they offered, and it’s supposed to be used toward the side dishes served with the crow you’ll have to eat after bragging to friends, family, and countrymen for months about how you’re going to be published in a national—nay international—magazine.

Well, no crows will be digested because of me. (This time.) The PDF they sent contains the entire section that includes all the other designers’ patterns too. What this means is that my pattern is an integral part of the layout and there’s no killing it. Yay!

In all three photos, Pippa isn’t looking at the camera, so I figured my hat didn’t have a chance of making the cover. (Yes, I’m already going there. Why not?) But then I looked at other covers, and…

Please join me in sending up prayers that mine is the first pattern you’ll see.


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