positive change

When I look back on this year, one of the most interesting things for me personally has been the number of small changes that have occurred in recent months. When one considers such changes individually they don’t seem like much – but when I think of them collectively, their impact on me has really been…

Read More

to err is human

I’m really looking forward to our new knitting-related releases, but wanted to say a few quick words before they begin (yes, it’s tomorrow!) about Handywoman. I’ve had so many wonderful responses to the book – from those in their own situations of chronic ill-health or disability, from those who understand exactly what I’m saying about…

Read More

Etac and me

One of Handywoman’s central themes is the importance of tools and made-things in everyday life. I have a different, and much more nuanced, understanding of well-designed tools and objects post-stroke simply because my own physical deficits forced me to notice, and to reflect upon, how such objects addressed (or often failed to address) my body…

Read More

Handywoman is published!

Just thought I’d drop in to let you know that Handywoman has now been published and that all pre-ordered copies have been shipped. Handywoman was expertly printed at Bell and Bain Glasgow . . . from where it crossed the river, and travelled just a few miles to our warehouse in Clydebank. . . would…

Read More

a question of proportion

I’m working on new designs and have found myself musing upon questions of proportion. (please don’t laugh at my shoddy sketching. I am useless with a pencil and Fashionary is a genuine godsend for me!) It recently occurred to me just how much, over the past twelve months or so, I have been enjoying experimenting…

Read More

Swimming in Carbeth Loch

The weather has been unusually hot, so I decided to go swimming in Carbeth Loch. You may remember that I wrote a couple of years ago about how hard it was for me to, um, take the plunge and begin swimming in a pool again. Since then, I’ve done a lot of pool swimming and…

Read More

back here

When something really major happens in your life there is always a before and after. And when that something is a massive transformation that alters your body and identity, when that something is a stroke that suddenly changes you from an able-bodied person to someone who will spend the rest of her life managing the…

Read More

then and now

Last week I was in a bookshop in Glasgow, perusing the outdoor bookshelves, and became absorbed in a tome about the West Highland Way. “Is this you getting ready, then?” asked a friendly assistant, assuming I was preparing myself for a 96 mile walk. “No,” I replied, “I actually walked the West Highland Way back…

Read More

new paths

I’m currently working on a couple of chapters for my book. The first chapter looks at learning to walk (which, unless you’ve experienced injury or disability most of us will never engage in as an acquired skill) and the second chapter explores some thoughts I have about walking itself (one of my favourite activities, which…

Read More

in progress

1. I’m now over half way through writing my new book. I’ve been enjoying the project immensely. Being able to just explore ideas and try out different ways of putting things across feels like a complete luxury. I genuinely love writing (which is probably the key to being any sort of writer, I think) and…

Read More

Ottar

Working on a book can be full of surprises. I did not think, when I set out to write a chapter about tools and objects and the way my attitude to the material world changed after my stroke, that I would end up being inspired by an amazing feminist anarcho-syndicalist . . . but weirdly…

Read More