I might not have a smartphone but I do have an MP3 player and I did know that it had a podcast player on it but I've never used it. I was out for a run this morning, listening to the radio on my MP3 player, and my mind kept wandering back to the lace shawl that I'm working on. I have been knitting this shawl since April. It started out as my participation in a KAL. The idea of that was to knit whatever pattern you wished, but it had to be worked in the round to create a flat work (so circular shawl good, tea cosy bad!), it had to be lace knitting, and it had to use a minimum of 1000 yards of yarn. I had had an idea to make a square shawl in the round so I set about designing it and knitting-along with it.
The KAL finished in July. Unfortunately my shawl did not. By that point I'd got a square about 12" across which used barely half of the required yardage. On the upside I did also have four pairs of socks, a short-sleeved top, a beaded shawlette, a cowl, a vest and a market bag that had acted as excellent distractions from the Massive Blue Square Shawl of Doom!
Finally I am getting to the end of this piece. Two things finally spurred me on. The first was a challenge in a Ravelry group I belong to to finish a WIP that has been in hibernation. Technically this hasn't been hibernating as I have been working on it, but one or two rounds a month wasn't getting me anywhere very quickly. Some accountability in that group would help. The second was a call for design submissions for a yarn company looking for shawls, stoles and wraps in advanced lace work with a deadline at the beginning of October. That did it. I am going to finish this shawl so that I can submit the pattern, and if it isn't successful I'll have the pattern ready to publish myself.
So, to get back to the point, where do the podcasts come in? Well, I thought if I could have something to listen to rather than look at while I knitted I might get done quicker. I had a browse around online and I had no idea there were so many podcasts I wanted to listen to. So far I have downloaded a BBC Radio 4 podcast of The News Quiz, and a couple of editions of The Infinite Monkey Cage, a science podcast with Brian Cox. I've also subscribed to half a dozen knitting podcasts. I have only listened to one so far, from Never Not Knitting, but I enjoyed it and look forward to listening to more. The others I have downloaded are from the Knitmoregirls, KnitBritish, Pom Pom's Pomcast, and Shinybees.
So far my plan is working too. I have completed 7 rounds of my shawl already today!