When I heard that Faces of Tradition was a finalist for a Benjamin Franklin award, I thought “Well, that is nice.” Then I thought, “Maybe I should go to the ceremony in New York in case the book wins the gold.” Then I thought, “Nah.”
I love New York, but I don’t much love ceremonies. I used to go to the Benjamin Franklin awards banquet pretty regularly, but I haven’t attended in years. Now I’m kicking myself, because we won the gold.
I wish I had been there on behalf of my team. More than most that I’ve worked on, this book was a group effort. It wasn’t just an author handing in a manuscript, or a photographer shooting a portfolio, or a designer shoving the parts around, with me waving my baton to keep everybody on tempo. It was a collaboration every step of the way. It was an organic process—whatever that means.
So here’s to Joe Coca, Michael Signorella, Nilda Callañaupa, Chris Franquemont (whom I deeply miss), to my colleagues at ClothRoads (especially marketing guru Linda Stark), the many friends at the Center for Traditional Textiles of Cusco who drove us all over the Andes and welcomed us into their villages, and all the other friends who have touched this book in different ways. It was a peak experience in every way.
But now to the task at hand. You know those cool stickers that you see on award-winning books? You know how they get there? Manual labor. At least until the book goes into reprint and the sticker can get printed on. At least they are not the kind of stickers you have to lick.