Lace Work

Okay–so I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong with this pattern, but I know that I’ve finished the last row TWICE and the number count is off.

Now some people would — and rightfully so– frog the whole thing back to the white part and try again.  Fuck the last week– they want their lace to be perfect. At this point I can’t even tell what it’s supposed to look like when it’s done.

I’ve been following the chart–it’s a fourteen stitch, twelve row repeat. which while not easy only has pattern stitches every other row, so it’s not super hard either.

I have no idea what I”m doing wrong, and I’m going to just power through. When it’s finished and blocked, maybe I can see it. Maybe I won’t be able to–and maybe nobody else will either. The finished look is pretty complicated a a whole–not everybody’s going to see the fuck up.

And I know this would drive the perfectionist batshit crazy.

But here’s the thing.

I’m working on an edit–a particularly messy one. The timeline is locked into place, and so are the characters, by the books that have gone on before. There is almost no external conflict–none. And while some people would be like, “So, that makes it easy–just two guys working shit out!” this doesn’t mean the guys don’t have a story arc, both individually and as a cohesive whole. The deal is, I need to make that story arc sing!

So this is picky, persnickety work.

It’s a 9.8 on the difficulty scale of writing. And I am mulling, pondering, and re-editing until I get this right.

I knit to relax, I suppose. I like making a serviceable, pretty garment–and I do like it when I get things right–but if my hobby is driving me crazy, that’s no good. That’s time to walk away. So I learn to live with my mistakes, call them design features, give the gift–or sport the super ugly shawl that I can’t resist–and I move on.

But writing? If I left these flaws in this manuscript without pulling the thread and rewriting and boosting and tweaking and fixing, and then just slapped my name on this one and sent it out thinking, “Well, they can’t all be perfect,” I would feel worse than a failure at my profession.

I’d feel naked.

I’ll post pictures of the shawl when I’m done. It may end up a birthday present for my bio-mom, who would love it if it was basic garter stitch and made out of shoelaces because she loves me, and who will probably love the attempt at lace with all her heart. If nothing else, the yarn is soft and pretty, and this will make a shawl/scarf that will keep her warm.

I may end up wearing it to New York because I’ve discovered I’m knitting for myself a lot, and that’s okay too.

The garment will be flawed and worn anyway and I’m not really bothered by that. It’ll cover me just fine.

But the book must be perfect, or all my flaws will be like beacons, and that I cannot have.

0 thoughts on “Lace Work”

  1. Kerry says:

    I am currently working on the Lilli Pilli shawl by Ambah O’Brian and had a similar issue with the first lace section. It looks a little funky in the middle but whatever…, hang in there, I’m sure it will look just fine when you’re done. I really like you’re color choices 🙂

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