screaming into the void

I feel that I’ve been screaming into the void and the only response I get is silence. I know I shouldn’t be surprised, but it is kind of disappointing.

+ Knit hat for coworker has been in my bag for like 2 weeks and I haven’t seen him, so it’s like I’m just carrying around this lemon-yellow thing for no reason.

+ Working on another shawl and this one feels like it’ll never be completed. I’m at the halfway point, trying for a larger shawl, so I’m really not surprised that it seems to be taking forever. The more I go on, the more I realize I have so much green yarn.

+ A narrator/voice actor that I love (and follow on various platforms) sent out a call to authors for stories for him to narrate. He’d requested more sci-fi (because he mainly does horror), and I’ve been tempted to double check the word count on a story or two that I’ve finished and send one on to see what happens. Because, really, why not? The most that’ll happen is I’ll get told he can’t do it or whatever.

+ Still need a title for the Heironimus story. I mean, I could leave it called as such. I think it’d be really awesome to send it somewhere, but it’s a little past the normal 7500-word limit.

+ Started working on a fresh story and I keep having to make notes to myself within the story to look up what certain things are called or look up what the correct part for an item is. So far, I’ve mostly got descriptions of things. I texted Jamie about it, saying that I felt a bit like M R James and I’m trying to keep that in mind while I work on the idea. I have a vague idea of where I want it to go and how to end it, but that’s far on down the line.

+ I’ve got bits and bobs of stories pecked at on the computer that I need to work on, but my notes for a couple of them have disappeared so hell if I know what I was doing besides half-thought notions of “what if” and “I wonder.”

+ I’d say I’d be working on stories and such tomorrow, but tomorrow is a day for housework and seeing if the weather is decent enough for me to go outside and start cleaning up around my roses and working on encouraging them to grow. I think two of them straight gave up after last year’s well-intended flower bed clearing by other people (who mowed them down). Maybe I’ll plant a pumpkin seed and see if I can get some nice leafy growths to help maintain some cover and maybe get another Surprise!Pumpkin out of it.

But now, it’s time to wake Jamie up and let the dogs out so they can get some of their crazy out of them.


little thought exercise

I’m enjoying making shawls. They’re light enough to be either a shawl or a scarf, they use up a bit of yarn that I have laying around, and they’re fun. I decided, while listening to some M R James, that I’d knit for an hour and see how many rows I got done since I am starting up a new one.

Including the 1 lonely row I did last night, I got 10 rows done in an hour.

1 hour = 60 minutes
10 rows in 60 minutes = 6 minutes per row
300 rows needed per shawl (times 6 minutes per row) = 1800 minutes
1800 minutes / 60 minutes = 30
30 hours = approximately 1 complete shawl

This does not include the fact that the longer I work on the shawl, the more rows I get done because I decrease every-other row. But, for the sake of this thought exercise, we’ll keep it at 1 row takes 6 minutes.

If I were to go by the “charge how much you believe you should be making per hour” bullshit (the whole notion that, as an artist, you should charge a per-hour rate or have a finished rate that you can break down to a per-hour rate if need be.)

Let’s start with the Federal Minimum Wage, $7.25 an hour:

7.25 X 30 = $217.50

Let’s see how this looks if you were to charge $9 an hour:

9 X 30 = $270

The higher we go, the more ridiculous this gets. $12:

12 X 30 = $360


15 X 30 = $450

And this is just for labour. This is if I were to charge “how much I believe I should be paid” for a dinky little shawl I’m having fun making and using up parts of my stash. This doesn’t include “materials,” which kind of irks me anyway. What if I were asked to work on another Tom Baker Doctor Who scarf?

If I were to buy brand new skeins of yarn, let’s say Red Heart because it’s the easiest for me to get in the colours I think look the best for this scarf, that is $2.98 per skein.

2.98 X 7 = $20.86

2.98 X 9 = $26.82

Both numbers because there is always at least one skein I run out of if I don’t buy the Super Saver.

$5.98 X 7 = $41.86

That’s more than I charged the last time I made one of those scarves, and that was even after I met the person who insisted she pay for materials and we spent like an hour going through trying to find the softest yarns because her kid is tactile-sensitive. $41.86 is more than I charged a person who was using the scarf in a web-series. (granted, I did agree, afterwards, that from then on I was charging people more than what I charged him because these scarves take for-fucking-ever to make).

And I don’t get the whole “pay for materials” thing in my case. In other people’s work, it makes perfect sense. You might not have the exact materials you need to build what someone wants and you need to go out and get them.

Me? I have a stash of yarn (and fabric). There is a reason why “I’m like a dragon, but craft things are my horde” is my personal tagline. Unless it’s a colour I normally don’t have (like pink), sure I’ll probably be like “I don’t have this colour so it’ll be a bit.” Unless I randomly get a box of pink yarn on my front porch (like I did over the summer because my friends know I’m a yarn hoarder and will take whatever they want to give me).

And really, why would I charge $100+ for a shawl or whatever when someone can just as easily go to the mall or online and buy something approximately the same style/weight for like 1/4 of the price or less?

That doesn’t really make much sense and it reminds me of back in high school when a girl I had a few classes with decided to paint these circles on a canvas and put a price tag on them (average size canvas, acrylic paints, done while in art class, so it was a ~50 minute class per day) of over $250 during an exhibition of stuff that was pretty much “hey fam, come look at all the stuff we do in art class!” (the MLP chess set was awesome, done by some other kid who I don’t think ever put their name to the peice)

various things

+ I made…3 shawls in the last couple weeks of September. I’ve completed one so far now and have started another one because I found a skein of yarn I forgot I had and it’ll be fun to see how far I get and compare it to the “Neapolitan Shawl” that I made a couple months previous (they’re the same brand so it’ll be neat to compare).

I’ve been sharing photos of it on Instagram.

+ I decided to do Inktober this year. I found 2 different prompts and decided to do both: the one from the Inktober website and one called 31 Witches. So far I’m keeping up with it–granted it’s only the 4th, but hey, that’s 8 sketches done!

I’d decided to do non-serious 2-minute sketches and see if I can just use pen/ink instead of my usual pencil-then-ink process. I’m posting them to the comic-blog that I started if you’d like to check them out. I’m having fun with it.

+ I found that there is a limit to how many times you can apply to Bath and Bodyworks, and that number is 5. I find it hilarious. (there’s a local B&BW that has a number of various positions open)

+ I started reading The Mammoth Book of Vampire Stories By Women and…yeah. Totally not for me. (the title page has the “by women” part italicized and I found it hilarious). Skipped the first story (not a fan of Anne Rice), read the second one and went “WTF” and was about to skip the rest of it when it ended. Started on the 3 story and got a couple pages (via kindle) in and noped out of it and now I’m on story number 4, it’s about an established character that the author has and…I don’t know. I’m finding myself less and less interested in it.

I like vampire stories. I like different takes on the vampire (from rotting corpse to bored, non-sparkly “teenager” determined to find someone to spend eternity with), but I could really do without the descriptions of a vampire-like creature molesting a kid (yeah, that happens in story number 2). I have more enjoyment out of the half-thought paragraphs that show up on my tumblr dash involving vampires than this book.

+ Jamie threatened to get me a cat yesterday. A few short hours after Carrot, one of our youngest cats (one of 2. He and Beric are about the same age) decided he wanted to lick the bowl of waffle-mix from the night before and broke a plate and one of Uggs’ ceramic cat food dishes. This happened two days after I found that he’d cracked my glass pitcher and my “eat, drink, and be spooky” mason-jar glass.

I swear, that cat gets into everything.

I told Jamie we can’t have more cats because Carrot and Mewkis are like having 4 cats on top of the cats we already have. He agreed, saying that if he were to pick another cat, he’d end up with another one like them. He’s the one who picked Carrot (well, he picked the other orange kitten and we wound up with Carrot), he picked Mewkis, and he’s the one who picked Faustus. I got conned into adopting Beric (my foof-monster) and I’m the one who conned Jamie into letting me keep Snooch.

They’re a weird bunch of cats, but they’re ours. And, for the most part, they live pretty well together. Uggs isn’t thrilled by it, but now he’s been staying in the bedroom and likes it that way, even if all the other cats are up and the door’s open. He’ll stay in the bedroom and sleep the day away.


Still working on the shawl I started a few weeks ago or so (omg it’s not done). I am 28 rows away from being halfway done (yay) and I have finished the skein that wouldn’t end. Now I’m on the second skein.

Yay, one skein down. One ugly ass pink skein used up and now I’m on the second one.

Working on this thing, I’ve practically buried the cat in the finished part while knitting and have realized that, by the time I’m done, I’ll be able to wrap Cricket in this and not have it drag the floor.

I’m not sure how it’s going to look until I’m done. I have an idea (a hope), but right now it just looks like a woven blanket.

And now I am wanting to be done as soon as possible, because I want to use the hideous rainbowy skeins of yarn (2, maybe 3) I have in my stash and make a new shawl, but in a slightly different way.

I also want to see if I can make a dog sweater. Because I have lost my mind and I have “big dogs.”

small victory

Bear Hat finished! Woohoo

A post shared by Amanda Lovecraft (@alovecraft) on

As you can see, I finished Jamie’s Bear Hat. I like how it came out and I know he’ll wear it when it starts to get colder than it is now (because cold rain at upper-50s is still “too hot”)

So yay, at least one thing done.

I’m 36 rows into the latest shawl (which means I’ve got 264 more rows to go. boo), so I’m hoping I can get a bit more of it done today. I don’t expect to get a whole lot of rows in, but one or two would be nice.

The 2017 Inktober Prompt List showed up in my tumblr feed last night, so I wrote down the prompts so I can start working on some ideas. So far, I’ve jotted down ideas for 19 of the 31 prompts. The downside is, they’re not in order. They’re just the ideas that have come around while I look at the words. I’m still hoping to use them as part of the comic stuff, but as a “hey, here’s a not-so-clean ink sketch of an idea I had” because I’m not taking this thing seriously.

I’ve added a handful of words to the story I’m working on and…ugh. I just want it to be over so I can work on something else for a little while. I’m near the end, so stopping and working on a different idea just makes me think that I’ll leave it and never come back to it.

making things

+ I finished the Combo Breaker blanket, it is folded up and sitting on a shelf until Jamie remembers to take it to work to give it to the parent. lol

+ I made Jamie a Bear Hat. It is a smidge too small, but he thinks it’s awesome. So, I’m working on making another one (I have the yarn so why not?) I still have a few more months before it gets cold enough for him to wear a hat, so I have the time to work on it.

+ I keep staring at the same documents doing nothing.

  • Weird Granddad story is just…there. I am at a point where I don’t remember exactly where I was going with it
  • Attempted Novelette is at a standstill. I’m at the point where I can’t remember whose name is for which character except for one, and that’s mainly because I keep making terrible jokes about it.
  • I’ve been jotting down notes for another story idea to try to get bits together with it

+ Nothing is finished and I don’t know if I’m fine with that. I don’t know if it’s an epic brain fart or just extreme apathy.

+ Bug and Firefly got into it the other day and Firefly needs to learn that Bug is getting her back for when they were younger and Firefly got Bug because Bug was too nice. Now Bug is a tank of a dog and has power behind her snaps.

Firefly is fine, we carted her butt to the vet, where her head was cleaned and parts were shaved. I insisted we take her because of the puncture under her jaw (which is fine, just squicky) and we learned that she’s got a couple more punctures than I had originally thought. She’s on antibiotics and has been happily spoiled by getting to sleep on the couch, getting various pieces of human food (cheese, peanut butter, things like that), and snoring on the bed.

Baby blanket


Months ago, I had the idea that I’d make a baby blanket with the S loom I have (the inaugural knit for the S loom) for Jamie’s boss. His boss found out she was pregnant and I decided, when we’re done with the whole wedding thing, I’d work on a baby blanket for her. I had this adorable baby yarn (seriously, it’s toted as “baby yarn,” probably due to its softness) that I had managed to snag for $1.  I thought it’d be best to use the S loom instead of one of my long looms because then I wouldn’t have to worry about running out of yarn (while it was one of the Giant Skeins of yarn, I only had one roll)

But, of course, working for Store, I was regulated to working 50+ hours a week with one day off if I was lucky and constantly getting overtime because…some of my (former!) immediate coworkers don’t understand the concept of coming in on time. I had managed to get into that rut of get up, get ready for work, go to work, come home, maybe eat, go to sleep. I really hated it.

Then I quit my job and Jamie told me when his boss would be back at work, so I made sure that I finished this sucker up so she could get it on her first day back (huzzah!). I didn’t do any sort of edging, because I figured I didn’t have the time (I had just finished it the Friday before she came back), so it rolls. I think it works. It’s weird, it’s different, and it works.

Online, it says that a baby blanket is supposed to be 30×30. This turned out to be like 32×36. A little off (but not bad for guesswork on the length!).

Jamie’s boss loves it and I’m glad. I had gotten to the point where I thought everything looked like crap.