Books are always great gifts, but sometimes we writers do other stuff.
Like Tunisian Hooking: I'm not a knitter or a crocheter. However, I got this huge bag of stuff at Goodwill, which included probably everything needed--and a big batch of cream yarn.
My mother and sister crocheted everything, from the most delicate to afghans. (Which left me bored, of course.) But then, a few years later--lots of years later--this came along and looked interesting. My books contain things I've done, seen, tried. If YouTube can't explain it, well... Look for Tunisian Hooking somewhere in my future books. :)
So. Carolin, who knows everything, pitched in to explain the long hooks in the photo. They are Tunisian Crochet Needles, which come in all different sizes, in aluminium/plastic/bamboo etc. Also, there are ones with long plastic strands for longer projects. The bottom effort is a mix of whatever I might know.
To use, you work back and forth and never turn the creation. You crochet one way and knit the other, so back and forth. Thanks to YouTube, I can now crochet a basic Tunisian stitch and the purl knit stitch. I'm learning what size hooks go with what yarn/project and am ordering larger Tunisians. (I'm still on dishcloths and have a mighty stack of them for gift giving.)
So far, I can double crochet enough for a dishcloth--and these are the best stress relievers possible. You can carry a cotton ball in a plastic sack with a crochet hook everywhere. They are great for waiting rooms. I've tried my iPad in waiting rooms, but crocheting does help a lot of tension--like at 3:30 this a.m. when I awoke from the prehistoric giant sloth chasing me.
Tunisian crocheting has a tendency to curl badly when starting, so Carolin advised using a large crochet hook to chain off so many.
While visiting my daughter, we made use of JoAnn's/Michael's etc. coupons and picked up more crochet hooks and yarn. (Neither one of us crocheted at this pt.) Note: the Tunisian needles are not that readily available and Amazon has a great selection. Do check on coupons, which represent big savings, at the craft stores.
With the help of YouTube, our iPads/minis, my daughter and I managed to learn more. She created a beautiful baby blanket. She went on to a basket weave stitch and is trying a shell stitch. I am back at the double crochet starting gate with the 2 Tunisian stitches.
If you're looking for stress relievers, I can highly recommend crocheting simple dishcloths. They make great gifts, rolled and tied with raffia, they are usually much appreciated. (And they can even be used as bath time exfoliators.) If you're a beginner like me, don't start a large project at first, but work your way up.