Since the last book project update, I've spent most of my personal time writing and organizing the content for the book manuscript.
During the fall, after my last research trip to Portland, two of my dearest Aunts passed away. My father's sister, Aunt Dina, and my mother's sister, Aunt Souad. My parents traveled overseas to attend to family matters for a couple of months. As a way to honor my Aunts' lives, I continued writing. The more I wrote the book, the more found strength and empowerment in honoring their lives and continuing our family's traditions.
Over the last couple of months, I achieved my word count goal of 45,000 words. I'm not yet done with the manuscript, because I have much more content to add regarding the designs and the process of embroidering a thobe. But, I am confident in saying that I've definitely surpassed the halfway point in terms of content -- I have more than half the content captured and I can see clearly what is left to be done. Soon, the manuscript will be in editing.
This last month, I also completed the following tasks for the book project:
- I create the book website, where I've started a new following of interested readers. The website is www.tatreezandtea.com.
- The illustration for the book cover is now complete, thanks to Jumana.
- I booked the Oregon reading series, which will be September 17-19th at the Ledding Library of Milwaukie Pond House.
I will be in Portland beginning March 1 for my second research trip. I plan to: photograph the embroidery designs and dresses at a natural light studio; finalize the details for the Ledding Library event; complete the first draft of the manuscript and obtain significant enough feedback from my mother to return to New York with edits/revisions; finalize a list of illustrations in the book that will be needed so that Jumana may begin this portion of work; complete embroidery patterns to be shared in the book.
Next month, my main focus is ensuring that my manuscript is solid and that I have completed at least half of the photography needed of the embroidery designs. The editing process should begin by April, latest May.
As a way for me to gauge your interests, please share your thoughts regarding book content in the below poll.
My next book project update will come after my trip to Portland, and may have a surprise video clip of one of my mother's demonstrations in the 1980's.
Have a wonderful spring, and thank you for your ongoing support of this very special project.