Below is the text of a piece I shared today on my blog. It's about what I'm doing this summer.
I don't know how I'm going to handle write about the trip just yet. I may still continue with the regular newsletter with its regular title and then send these missives with the "On the Road Again" title. Or I'll write the newsletter and link to blog posts. Who knows. It's all a big adventure.
But this was written for a broad audience, so if it seems funny in a newsletter setting, that's why.
I'm not sure why you're here, but if you have read my work or follow me on social media, or are a friend who I talked to in the last four months, you know that my life was kicked into a tailspin in January when my dog died. I have shared this grief already, most notably in a piece that I wrote for The New York Times.
- I have been to Alaska but not Hawaii (I will fly there when I get out west – where from TBD).
- I am still working on this trip – so if you're one of my editors, please don't stop assigning! I'm plan to work for a few reasons. First, I like my job. Second, that vaguely-worded situation I referenced above was a major financial drain, and I hope to restock my savings without touching the money from the sale of my house. And third, no publisher is paying me to do this. I made a half-hearted attempt to get someone to sponsor the trip, but I'm glad it didn't work out because now I can go and do whatever I want. I'm sure I'm going to write about it, though. It's already worming its way into stuff I have in process, and I have an assignment for when I get to Colorado. But this trip is for me, not to create work opportunities (though editors – if you'd like something, get in touch!) So think of this as Jen's Mobile Summer Office, with a lot of dirt, sweat (and I assume at some point) tears along the way.
- I am not going on an overseas romp for one reason: my grandfather. After serving in the Pacific Campaign in WW II, said he'd never leave the U.S. again until he saw all 50 states. The only exception he made was Canada, which he and my grandmother drove through on their way to Alaska. He didn't quite make it to all 50, but I hope I will. He died 10 years ago on Wednesday. I'm sure he would have been proud.
- I have no idea where I'll live after.
- New Mexico
- North Dakota
- South Dakota