I have been making a lot of progress in several key areas lately. Here are a few things I have been working on I will enjoying continuing to develop through the winter!
The crochet pattern for Dotty Spot, 1 of the key characters in Green Grass, Still Waters, is currently being testes by experienced crochet pattern testers in India, Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, South Africa, and in several states across the US. The first ones that started only a couple of weeks ago, are already beginning to finish! We are having a lot of discussion in the private Facebook group for the pattern testers about yarns, what is available in each region, and what will be the best yarns to recommend for the final patterns.
I learned last week from both online, and in-person experiences in Cody, Wyoming that there is a clear demand for the finished, already-made crochet characters of Woolfred, Dotty and April. Crochet is impossible to mass produce. If a crochet artist were paid near minimum wage for her time, and re-paid for the cost of her materials, 1 character would cost between $150-$200 finished, and that is not even including the “double what it actually costs you to make it” rule!
To that end, I am exploring options for how to create the characters in an easier, less expensive and time consuming form, while I am also pursuing what is the wise way to go about enlisting women who already sell their crochet, to make and sell the Green Grass characters (without me being in the middle or taking a cut of what they would make), so long as they include information about the book and where to buy it. My ultimate goal, is for the characters, who are wonderful little ambassadors, to go to work drawing people’s attention to the existence of the book, that more people around the world can discover the message of God’s love and desire to restore and be in relationship with them.
This week I am writing the final rough draft of a Christmas monologue I have been working on for a Baptist church in Missouri, USA. I always write several “final” versions before I land on the “final, final, final” one I actually publish! The concept is of a shepherd named Roy Ahser (Ro’i ben Asher, meaning “shepherd”, “son of”, “happy, celebrates”), is addressing the audience, who have peeked in on him in 4 BC while he is watching his sheep with his friends and neighbors. Roy tells them about why he loves his job and what about it reminds him of Messiah, just minutes before the Annunciation of the Angels. If I am able to succeed in my writing, by the end of the 10-15 minute act, the audience will understand how shepherds themselves are a picture of “Immanuel, God with us!”
Concurrently, I am still working on writing A Sheep Like Faith: What My Sheep Taught Me about Knowing and Following Jesus. I am still hoping for an early 2019 publication date. I was getting very bogged down with the writing, conflicted because I want to pour every thought I have learned about sheep, shepherding and scripture into it without leaving anything out of it. I was thinking this opportunity to publish in book form is my one, end-all-and-be-all chance to put all the ideas before the world. My wonderful mentor, Bettejean, has helped me realize I really have about 3 books going, not just one! So as I continue to build and work on What My Sheep Taught Me about Knowing and Following Jesus, I will continue to create more for this webpage, to develop an online (and eventually ebook) resource for those who want to understand better and teach others to understand the sheep/shepherd metaphors in scripture, that ultimately they may have a better understanding of walking with Christ in relationship with Him.
Another, very unexpected opportunity opened up last week, too! A shop owner approached me about having an even at her shop to promote the book, and to teach people how to make the characters from the crochet patterns. I am so thankful for her enthusiasm, interest, and vision for how we may be able to work together! We are in discussion about a possible event in February in Cody.
So much happening! I never imagined I would be so thankful for cancer treatment creating so much forced time at home! Without it though, I would never be able to do all these things. I am very interested to see how God continues to develop a Sheep Like Faith as a kind of “ministry”. It is all so much bigger than me, requires so much more that I am capable of dreaming up and pulling off. Each little step, it just seems He keeps on bringing me the next move, no matter my inadequacies, no matter my inexperience.
Thank you for joining me in this journey by reading and praying. I do not consider it “my” work, but ours together, because without your prayers, friendship, ideas, and encouragement, I could never do any of it by myself. Please do contact me if you have any thoughts to share!