Check out the latest project from Kathryn Vercillo: Hook to Heal

Do you remember when I did a review of Kathryn’s book, Crochet Saved my Life? And then Kathryn popped by to share how to achieve mindfulness in 7 easy crochet steps. I suppose it’s obvious that I love Kathryn’s mission of sharing crochet as a art that can heal.

That’s why I’m so excited to share Kathryn’s new endeavor: a book titled Hook to Heal. It’s a big project, and one that will need some resources to reach it’s full potential.

Hook to heal by Kathryn Vercillo

Kathryn was nice enough to stop by to chat about the project, and keep reading for information about supporting the project via its fundraising campaign.

Chat with Kathryn: the Hook to Heal project

Stacey: Tell us a bit about your new project

Kathryn: Hook to Heal is my next book as well as the name of a multi-media online support system for crocheters that will be launched in tandem with the book. The book is a book of creativity exercises designed to help people use the craft of crochet to access greater creativity in their everyday lives. The exercises will challenge crochet lovers to think about the craft differently, explore their inner artistic blocks and challenges, push their own creative boundaries and honor their deepest need to create.

In addition to the book I will be offering online crochet-for-creativity classes as well as one-on-one email support for people who want personal help / coaching to use crafting to explore artistic urges and needs. In short, Hook to Heal is a comprehensive multi-media crochet-based approach to helping others fully understand their creative selves and take their inner artist to the next level.

Your last book focused on using crochet to heal from mental and physical difficulties. This book, however, seems focused on using crochet to improve quality of life for everyone… even giving perfectly healthy folks a creativity boost. Is that right?

Yes, that’s absolutely right. Crochet Saved My Life looked at the mental and physical health benefits of crochet and was filled with stories about people who were dealing with very difficult health situations and found healing in the craft. However, all of the reasons that crochet was beneficial for these people (meditation, relaxation, inspiration, etc. are reasons that crochet can also be used by perfectly healthy people to improve their total quality of wellness.

I believe that all people have a deep urge to be creative although it manifests in different ways for each person. Sadly, many people are afraid to consider themselves creative these days, perhaps comparing themselves to other artists or big name crafters or even Etsy makers. What Hook to Heal aims to do is to help all people honor their own creativity and see how it can be used to make their own inner and outer worlds better regardless of what starting point they are at in terms of their own health and wellness. Life can always get even better and crochet can be a tool to make that happen!

You’ve always been dedicated to crochet, but since your last book came out, I’ve noticed a renewed sense of passion and focus on your blog. Can you tell us a bit about how your previous book has shaped your path?

Thanks for noticing that Stacey!! I have definitely been committed to crochet ever since I learned the craft and especially since I launched my blog, Crochet Concupiscence. I am honored to be a part of the online crochet community and I aim to use my blog to not only provide information about the craft and inspiration for crafters but also to help strengthen the ties within that community.

So I always felt that way but with the launch of Crochet Saved My Life it really got taken to a new level. In order to write the book I interviewed about two dozen women who shared their stories with me about their health issues and how crochet helped them. These were intimate, detailed stories of their lives and their creativity. The fact that they trusted me to hear, hold and appropriately share these stories really built a sense of connection with those women.

When the book came out, more and more people began writing to me to tell me similar stories. I started sharing more of those on my blog, in addition to continuing to share my own story, and I also launched a Ravelry group for people who wanted to discuss the topic of personal crochet health in more depth. Being so open about the important role that crochet has played in my life and having these people be so open with me really amped up the passion and focus for me and reassured me that my commitment to sharing the craft with others was really exactly where I want to be with my work.

Many people don’t know how much work goes into self-publishing. Can you give us a small taste of the tasks involved?

With that said, as a self-publisher (and especially one on a limited budget) you really have to wear all of the hats of a publishing business. You are not just the author of the work but also the editor, the creative director, the accountant, the marketing person, the PR person … you’re the whole team. So just a glance at some of the major tasks involved in self-publishing would be:

  • The entire process of defining what you want to write, researching to write it and then actually writing it
  • Building up an audience for the work during the time of writing so that you have people to market to once the book is release (through blogging, networking, etc.)
  • Handling all aspects of creative design including the book cover, any photography, formatting the text, converting documents into the correct files for uploading and publishing, etc.
  • Creating the book, reviewing it, asking people for feedback, editing it, updating it and ultimately ending up with a finished product
  • Getting the book out there for sale which can mean everything from ordering your own print copies and asking stores if they’ll take them on consignment to getting the book listed on sites like Amazon to create Kindle versions for download
  • Setting your own price points and tracking and analyzing whether you’ve priced the book correctly so that you can make enough profit without making the book too expensive for potential readers; this involves a lot of ongoing market research
  • Creating and maintaining a way for people who like the book and are interested in it to keep updated with what you are doing with it; social media upkeep, blog updates, newsletter creation, etc.
  • Requesting bloggers and other media people to spread the word about the book through interviews, reviews, giveaways; this is wonderful but time consuming because you may send out 100 email requests and only 1 person wants to interview you and then you have to take the time to do the interview and promote the interview so people see it
  • All while working on the next book project!

There is always more to learn. If you are lucky enough to have a bit of a budget you can outsource some of the things that you may not be as skilled at. I worked with an amazing photographer for the cover of Crochet Saved My Life and I really hope that my fundraising efforts will garner me enough money to be able to hire her for Hook to Heal, which I want to be a much more photo-rich production. My other core team member is my tech consultant (AKA “web guy”) who helps handle some of the background of my blog stuff that it’s too tough for me to juggle on my own. So as you grow your income, you can get to a point where you wear slightly fewer hats because you have a team to help but for the most part self-publishing includes far, far more than just writing a book.

Wow! Sounds like it takes not only a lot of time, but resources, as well. I think your fundraising campaign is a fabulous idea. Can you tell us about how the funds will be used in this new book, and how people can get involved?

Absolutely! I’m crowdsourcing funding through Indiegogo to get the money to help launch Hook to Heal. For those who aren’t familiar with crowdsourced funding, it basically means that people who are interested in the product that I’m creating can become early investors to make it happen and then they’ll be the first to get products when they come out. People can invest as little as $1 to get involved with Hook to Heal.

Screen shot 2013-01-25 at 12.23.28 PM

I am trying to raise a minimum of $2000 in this 45-day fundraising campaign. Some of the things this money will go towards include:

  • The time required to complete to complete both the book and the lesson plans for the online classes. I have been self-employed for about 10 years and doing this project means dropping other time-consuming projects that pay the bills.
  • Photographer fees. This is going to be a photo-rich, creatively-inspiring book and that requires a professional photographer.
  • Publishing fees. Self-publishing means putting out some money up front to get copies of the book ready (plus the pre-publishing editor fees, etc.)
  • Web / tech fees. I’m fairly web savvy but I can’t do it all on my own so some of the tech/website details are handed over to my awesome tech consultant who deserves to be paid for his work!
  • Education for teaching online classes. I either need to hire a videographer or take classes that will help me make sure that I can deliver the highest quality online classes. Either way, a fee is involved.

Anyone who is interested can go to Indiegogo and click “contribute now” then they can choose the amount they want to contribute. Each contribution level comes with different perks and rewards. So for example, you can donate just $1 and you’ll get your name listed in the acknowledgments of the book. For $10 you can receive a digital copy of Hook to Heal upon first release. For $25 you can get an advance copy of the print version of the book one month before it’s available to the buying public. And the perks increase from there all the way up to the option of getting a one-on-one weekly mentoring session with me here in San Francisco for a donation of $5000.

I want to add that even just checking out the campaign and sharing it really helps me. Not everyone has money to donate and I absolutely understand that but the more people who share it, the more visible it becomes to those who do have access to funds. I appreciate every single dollar and every single mention!

And you’re starting creativity classes? Tell us more!

Yes, so Hook to Heal is a book but it is also a multi-media project that people can choose to access if they want to and that involves both one-on-one email support and larger online-based classes. In both situations, participants will be able to take the creativity lessons from the book to another level by exploring how they can be used in a supportive environment, discussing the experience with others to process it more completely and also getting access to limited edition materials and resources that won’t be in the book itself. I’m super excited to launch all of this in the fall and really hope that my fundraising campaign can help make that happen!

Thanks so much for sharing, Kathryn!

Get involved!

bio photo 2012

Doesn’t this sound like a wonderful project? It takes an amazingly dynamic woman to put together such a project… and Kathryn’s the one!

Please pop on over to the project on Indiegogo and have a look. If you can contribute, fabulous! If you can’t, maybe you think it’s worth tweeting about or sharing. Let’s get the word out!

If you don’t already know, Kathryn’s blog is an amazing resource, so feel free to have a look!

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Feb 4, 2013 | Posted by in Blog, Reviews & Interviews | 3 comments

Comments (3 Responses)

  1. […] Stacey of Fresh Stitches for interviewing me about my current fundraising project Hook to Heal […]

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