I’ve published a new ebook, Social Media for Crafters: Covering the Basics of the Social Web.
Writing this book has truly been a labor of love. The book includes the basics of social media designed specifically with the crafting enthusiast in mind, from knitting to scrapbooking, from beading to woodwork. It explores what social media tools are and explains various social networks, mailing lists, forums, discussion groups, and other online social groups, how they work, and how to find the right one for your crafty needs.
Of course, it covers basics of blogging, Facebook, Twitter, BurdaStyle, and Ravelry, some WordPress, and offers extensive lists of crafting communities by specialty, such as knitting, crochet, scrapbooking, beading, jewelry making, quilting, woodworking, embroidery, crazy quilting, sewing, and many more. I’ve also put together an extensive list of crafting podcasts, many of which are featured in Craft Month: Podcasts for the Knitter, Crocheter, Quilter, Woodworker, Beader, Jeweler… as part of the ongoing WordCast Craft Month.
The Story Behind “Social Media for Crafters”
Most of you know my story about how I made my way to what is now known as blogging, coming out of the highly interactive CompuServe Forums to the brand new web with one of the first websites in the world, journaling the stories of our life on the road in Taking Your Camera on the Road, teaching workshops and training programs on online journaling and community building for groups and businesses, stumbling upon WordPress and falling in love, then suddenly become an expert on all of this.
This led to helping Liz Strauss found Successful Online Business Conference (SOBCon) and writing one of the first how-to books on blogging, Blogging Tips: What Bloggers Won’t Tell You About Blogging.
What you don’t know is how I got involved with crafting, and how I survive living in a high tech world because I make time every day to be truly, hands-on creative, not lost in the digital constantly.
My grandmother and mother were always crafty, finding creative ways to do artistic things. In this 1969 article about our home in Lake Stevens, Washington, other than my old dog sleeping on the front porch, it’s hard to see the moon on the front door. It was the beginning era of travel to the moon. The world was fascinated with all things science – real and fiction. My mother pounded the life out of a garbage can lid, covered it with putty and paint, and turned it into the textured surface of the moon. I loved seeing that every time I entered the house. It felt like I was passing through a Stargate – which I recreated the past two years on the entry of my own house for the holidays.
While I learned to paint, potter, make paper, including marbled paper, do woodworking and building things (and taking them apart) as a child, it wasn’t until I met my future in-laws that my road to a craft-filled life began.
I wanted to get to know them through their passions. One grandmother had once tatted, a 17th century lace making technique. After tearing up Tulsa’s craft stores to find some plastic tatting shuttles and thread, I sat in her apartment and watched, enthralled, as she complained, “I’m just not as fast as I used to be.” I couldn’t see what she was doing, her fingers were flying the shuttle in and out of the thread so fast. It took a while, but a few weeks later I had it down and became a crazy tatter.
I soon ran out of things to put the lace on and discovered quilts could be adored with tatting. So I learned how to make quilts. Then dolls, hats, clothing, knitting…finally making things without tatted lace. As we traveled with our work full-time around the world, my tatting shuttle went with me wherever I went. Only once after 9/11 did a flight crew take away my tatting as a security risk. It’s something I can do while doing other things, including traveling and waiting for files to download or upload.
If you’ve met up with me at one of the many WordPress events, WordCamps, and conferences around the world, you’ve spotted me knitting or tatting busily away when I’m not live blogging the sessions.
Once I was back in the United States from all my traveling, I made a special effort to get to the Sew Expo in Puyallup, Washington, a long time favorite event. It was so exciting to see it alive and thriving after my 15 year absence! Last year’s event featured some sold out classes on social media for crafters. Enthralled with the idea of mixing my expertise with crafting, I met with the teacher and managed to get into one of the classes. There was clearly a demand for this, and who better to present such information that an expert on the subject.
A year later, and a ton of research, interviews, and discussions with crafters, my dream became reality as I gathered all that I learned into Social Media for Crafters: Covering the Basics of the Social Web. I’m thrilled that Dave Moyer and Kym Huynh agreed to publish it through the WordCast Store. Without them and my husband, I could not have done this. I’m so lucky to be surrounded by the most amazing and loving men.
I share the expertise of so many crafters enjoying the magic of the social web in my book. I also dig in deep with expert lessons I learned the hard way, as well as from expert bloggers, online community builders, and social web experts from around the world.
You can order the book through my Books page.