Friday, November 16, 2012
Definitely Time For an Update.
Yippee! My book with Martingale / That Patchwork Place is moving along. Over the last several weeks I was able to review the page proofs that show what the book will actually look like. The photos, the illustrations, the instructions. Pretty exciting. Still waiting to see the cover design -- which will make it seem even more real. The release date is still early May, just before Spring Quilt Market in Portland, OR.
On the job front, I went back to work almost two months ago. It was time. Although I put my 17-month hiatus from full-time work to good use (30+ quilts, the book, a month vacation in Asia, surgery and recovery), my Cobra insurance coverage was going to run out. Yes, it was time to look for a job.
Back in February I was invited to be a beta tester for Handi Quilter's new TruStitch stitch regulator for their sit-down mid-arm machine, the HQ Sweet Sixteen. I spent a day in their offices, met some of the marketing team, and some of the engineers. As I looked around, I thought "Hmmm, this would be a nice place to work." (Especially since it's less than 15 minutes from my home.)
As soon as I got home that afternoon, I sent my resume to the director of marketing to let her know that I had a background in technology product marketing (and of course quilting), and that I would love to do some free-lance work for them if they ever needed help. Well, it wasn't but a couple weeks before I had my first editing project from them. And so it continued over the next five months -- a project here and there.
When I knew I had to start looking for a job, I spoke with the marketing director at Handi Quilter and let her know that once I found a full-time job, I wouldn't be available to do free-lance work anymore. The prospect of not being able to offload some of her work to me must have created some fear and trepidation, because a month later I started work for Handi Quilter full time as the marketing communications manager.
And it's been great. I was able to hit the ground running because I already understand the quilting industry, I was somewhat familiar with their products from the previous work I'd done, and I already had the marketing know-how. I've been very happy with my decision. Good company. Good people. Great products. And quilts decorating the walls throughout the building!
And, a nice little perk that I didn't know about when I joined Handi Quilter. After three months of employment, employees can (if they want) take home a slightly used HQ18 Avanté longarm machine and after four years of employment, it's theirs to keep. So I'm counting the weeks until I can take a machine home (hopefully one will be available when it's my turn!)