Not too long ago, in a conversation with another textile professional, she commented that people like us were always running 15 projects off the sides of our desk. I had to agree.
My working life is a constant round of keeping various and sundry plates spinning on their respective sticks. Sometimes I don't always manage it.
This week my schedule has had:
- finish weaving another place mat warp
- weave on the nearly 20 yard warp on the AVL because it will soon be needed for a pressing deadline
- wet finish four dozen mats with runners and 14 towels - because hemming also needs to get done
- mark three boxes of Olds Master Weaver homework (one done, one in process, one in the wings)
- finish documenting the project for Handwoven and get into the mail
- mail the dozen mats special ordered and delayed due to snowmaggedon
- market Magic in the Water on blurb.ca
- work out details for the conference seminars - trying to get info from people as busy as I am can be challenging...
- continue to nail down conference facilities - library secured as of last week
- continue to work on tentatively booked guild workshops later in the year
- answer emailed questions from formal and informal students
- work on The Intentional Weaver - once the last edit arrives, projects need to be designed, woven, documented to incorporate into the ms
- market the conference - which now has a Facebook page and blog, first post written. Now to approach instructors to see if they are willing to contribute
- discuss further plans for an on line class and schedule when that will get taped, then design the course content
There are other things waiting in the wings, but those listed above are things I actually worked on over the past week.
People like me don't work a standard five day week, or a standard 8 hour day. Over my lifetime I have worked 7 days a week, up to 15 hours a day. A 60 hour week isn't uncommon. Much of what I do is very physical - for me weaving is an aerobic activity.
Much of the work I do is out of the eye of the public. The administrivia of keeping a business afloat, financially, overseeing the bills getting paid, taxes remitted, supplies and materials ordered in a timely fashion - all takes time. Class prep takes time. Writing takes time. (Marketing, which on the internet is primarily writing - takes time.)
Staying in touch with workshop/class/conference organizers - takes time. All of that time is unpaid until it is. You have to market yourself by applying to conferences and/or guilds to teach. You have to submit articles 'cold' many times until you get accepted. When writing, you never know if anyone will pay you for your efforts.
Most of all, being a professional in this craft is a daily dance with details - just like the craft itself.
Currently reading The Templars' Last Secret by Martin Walker