Preparing for the Journey

Preparing for the Journey

It’s been a little bit since I’ve done a traditional blog. I’ve mostly posted poetry lately. Been in that mood, I suppose. Between conducting the final proof of the printed version of my forthcoming book THE MUSE UNLOCKED and coordinating the development of its e-book, in addition to my regular monthly assignments as a freelance writer by trade, whew! It’s been busy.


Despite all of this frenzy and bustling about, I am also planning a trip.


I say trip rather than vacation because ultimately, anything with a fairly drawn-out itinerary as this trip has to be unfortunately becomes very tiring very quickly. Already I’m anticipating just when the collapse will occur.


I love seeing family and friends, taking in some ballparks, exploring new museums, parks and attractions — all of which, we will be doing over the course of the soon-to-arrive 14-day road trip. I’m also expecting that at some time in the journey and in more recent years, sooner rather than later, I’ll reach my tipping point where I am also perfectly fine to study very closely, really thoroughly examine the, er, pillow in the hotel room, too. For many hours…at a…time.


This trip will be different. While my son will come and house-sit, it’s the first time there’s no Dexter for him to watch. I always felt sad leaving him behind but knew that once he had his big brother, he probably wouldn’t even notice us gone, but that greeting when we returned after a long, tiring journey was spectacular. How wonderful to meet up with this excited, tail-wagging, nose-tapping poochie who couldn’t wait to welcome you home from your journey. This time we won’t leave with that sadness but instead return with it as we walk into a quiet, lifeless place. It’s probably a good thing to get me out of the house for a while. I’ve been having a rough couple of weeks, thinking of him often and getting upset at a single memory. So, yes, bring on the distractions of summer vacation please. I welcome you wholeheartedly.


I still have a little work to do while on vacation. You’re never fully “off-duty” when you are a freelancer. Not really. I have a client for which I’ll probably have to upload some social media content while I’m out, another for which I’ll need to check on any edits to make on a piece I wrote – nothing major, nothing new to create, more administrative than anything. And I assigned myself my own homework related to the upcoming book release, two important tasks to work on and one requiring my trusty MP3 recorder which I will be bringing. I need to work on my book “elevator speeches” — how to describe my book if given 3 minutes, 1 minute or 15 seconds! It sounds easy enough but trust me: it’s not. I’ve had a few opportunities already that I’ve completely blown. How do you summarize a story you’ve worked on for over a year that takes up nearly 300 pages and much of your mind these days? I have come to the conclusion that it takes a little forethought. Aah, forethought. That’s what I’ve been missing. So I suppose 1250+ miles gives me plenty of time to work on this from the passenger seat or even while I’m driving if my partner in crime next to me is taking a snooze.


My other homework assignment is, well, a little embarrassing. But it’s…my signature. I hate it. I have the worst penmanship so let me apologize in advance to anyone who actually buys one of my books at an upcoming event and wants me to sign it. I’m truly sorry and hope that you’ll be able to read it. Sincerely. And good luck with that.


After going to Book Bash last month, I realized that I needed to figure out exactly how I’ll be signing it. One author impressed me by incorporating a different message with her signature, from one reader to the next… a different quote, saying or piece of advice each time. I really liked that. So I may try to do that, too. Not that there will be any line like hers waiting for my signature, but as a reader, I know how much I appreciated her taking a few moments to talk with me, make eye contact and give my book that special attention, so I will keep that in mind whether I have 1 or 10 people standing in line before me.


So, crazy as it may sound, I need to work on my signature and my elevator speech to tout my book later next month. Yep, sometimes the most fundamental things are where we need to invest the most time and energy. Vacation seems as good a time as any to do just that.


Oh, and I suspect that I’ll need to have some fun along the way. I could definitely use some of that, too, after a very stressful summer so far. Yes, bring on the fun.


*sprawls out on ground, shuts eyes and opens arms*


I take it all in. Fun, fun, fun. Please come my way.


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