After months of trying to make an appointment, I was able to get a booking in early March. We’ve now had the second shot and after another couple of weeks, we’re told, we’ll be “fully vaccinated”.
I don’t feel like this is a blank check or that it means a return to pre-2020 attitudes and habits. The pandemic cases and death tolls are still unacceptably high and much as I might like to travel freely, we just aren’t there yet. But as more people step up, make the effort, and take those opportunities to be vaccinated, we’re getting closer.
Legendary Road Trips Anthology
We’ve rebooted the work on this project and are collecting submissions from writers, bloggers and travelers who would like to write something that could be in print. The plan is for a paperback/print edition and an Ebook edition of a collection of pieces about epic road trips taken anywhere in the world, in the past four years.
Thanks very much to those of you who have already contacted us about writing something for inclusion in the book! I’d like to invite anyone else who wants to contribute to take a look at the Anthology Submission Guidelines on the Rumble Strip Books website https://www.rumblestripbooks.com/legendaryroadtrips.html
Compensation is one complimentary copy of the book. Professional writers are very welcome to contact me but we’re also interested in hearing from people who haven’t yet seen their writing in print. We’re looking for word count from 300 to 2,000 words (although we’re open to looking at pieces that are much longer, too).
Please send your submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org. The window will be open for two months and then in early June, we’ll make the decision on whether to proceed, based on the submissions received.
Summer Road Trip Planning
I’ve pulled out the USA map book and starting to plan a cross-country drive that would let me finish my goal of visiting all fifty states. Just one to go—Nebraska!
I’ve followed a lot of blogs and Instagram feeds this past fall and winter that have given me a million ideas about places to see and ways to stay Covid-safe. I’m looking forward to going more than 150 miles from home once we have the green light for non-essential travel.
Best wishes for a happy Easter!
A road trip! Well, just a day trip . . . only a few hours, really. But it felt like a year-long flight to freedom, after so many months staying at home due to the pandemic. We took the Bimmer out on Highway 41, through the Florida Everglades. It’s a convertible but that wasn’t much use on this drizzly, rainy day. Didn’t matter though—it was just glorious to be seeing some new territory.
I saw three today. One was on a bank of the River of Grass, one was floating in the swampy water beside the highway, and one was lunch for about fifteen vultures, right there on the shoulder of the road. Everglades National Park is home to thousands of species, including the American alligator and the bull shark. Not a place for a walk in the park.
Historic Site in the Ten Thousand Islands
At the end of the road, in Everglades City, the Smallwood Store, established in 1906, now operates as a museum. It’s on Chokoloskee Island at the western gateway to the park and It’s a glimpse into the rugged past of the region, when there was no electricity, no running water, and no bridges, with mosquitoes the size of your thumb.
Congratulations, Jenn Coleman!
The North American Travel Journalists Association (NATJA) has just released its Awards for 2020. Jenn Coleman, who blogs at https://www.colemanconcierge.com with her husband, Ed, has received an Honorable Mention for her photograph “Fall in Glacier National Park”.
Jenn and Ed were interviewed for Rumble Strip World Voices from the Road about their road trip to Baja California.
To see the full list of award winners, visit https://www.natja.org/awards/annual-competition/
or take a look on Twitter.com/tweetNATJA.
or on Instagram.com/natjaorg
The Windshield Views Blog goes out once a month to subscribers to our email list first. Please subscribe if you'd like to see the photographs and have it delivered directly to your inbox.
Rumble Strip World: Voices from the road is now available! It's been a wonderful four months since we began this project in August 0f 2020, while on a socially-distancing, virus-avoiding, quarantined and then isolated-in-a-car road trip in North America. I interviewed forty people about thirty-seven trips in sixteen countries. Then I transcribed the interviews, edited them for length and clarity, wrote the chapter transitions and introduction, and consulted on the design and production processes.
And now here it is!
We're selling it only through the online bookstore Blue Norther for the next few months and perhaps permanently. It's an experiment.
It's appropriate that it's being released Thanksgiving week as I am so grateful to all the road trippers who talked with me about their memorable experiences. I have heard from about a dozen others who'd like to tell me about their road trips -- and so it's likely there will be another volume of Voices From the Road on the way for next year.
Rumble Strip World. Voices from the road
Thanks so much to those of you who have engaged with us on social media in the past week as we have mentioned your interviews! We have put up eighteen names so far and next week we will post the next eighteen on Instagram and Twitter.
We haven’t finalized the details for publication day on November 24th. One minute, I’m thinking ‘Zoom call, or Crowdcast, Virtual Book Launch’ and the next, I’m feeling so Zoomed, and virtualled out that I’m leaning toward just an email and post or two.
A few years ago, we were thinking of doing a big party as a fundraising event. Quite a few people just felt overwhelmed and exhausted at the idea of one more thing to dress up for and someone suggested we organize a ‘non-event’. Tickets were printed and sold for a certain date when you were supposed to just stay home. We made a ton of money for our worthy cause (I think it was the Red Cross, but it might have been a library board.)
These days I’d love to get an invitation to a regular party but it’s all about Zoom and staying safe now.
So, we might try a ‘non-Zoom non-party’.
We’re all spending a lot of time reading these days and I’m seeking recommendations on travel books. My favorites are Bill Bryson and Elizabeth Gilbert; I’m also just about to start in on Cross Country by Robert Sullivan. I’d love to hear about the ones you’d recommend I read.
Project for Spring 2021
Rumble Strip Books will be releasing an anthology of Legendary Road Trips—a collection of essays by travelers who love to write and who have a story they want to share. Submissions have been coming in, but we are open to more. Please take a look at the guidelines here. https://www.rumblestripbooks.com/legendaryroadtrips.html
If you’re on the website at www.rumblestripbooks.com, you’ll find them on the Anthology Guidelines tab. It’s a non-paying gig, but if your piece is selected, you’ll receive some marketing buzz and a copy of the book in print.
Balcony view, instead of a windshield
It seems like you don’t have to go very far to experience a storm this year. Last week, Eta came through.
Counting down to November 24th!
Launch date for the fifth book in the Rumble Strip series. Thanks so much to those of you who have already pre-ordered! The printer has promised to deliver next week.
A good book for teens and preteens
I had a friend mention the other day that Rumble Strip World. Voices from the road would make a great holiday gift or stocking stuffer for teens or preteens who are interested in travel – or for those you’d like to inspire to want to come on a road trip with you.
Sneak peeks on Social
Starting next week, day by day, on Instagram (@rumblestripbooks) and Twitter (@rumblestripbook, because twitter limited the username to 15 characters) --
I’ll be posting the names of all 36 sources of stories for Rumble Strip World. Voices from the road, plus a few words about their road trip memory. Please share to any family, friends or followers you think might be interested. Books only available at https://bit.ly/3nMWIQJ
Advance Review Copies
We will be printing a small number of copies to send to book reviewers in the media and other authors who would be willing to provide a short review. (We do have a number of authors who were interviewed for Rumble Strip World, but sorry, no, they can’t be reviewers.) If you know of anyone, could you please let me know, at email@example.com?
It’s been an intense week and the list of possible tension-relievers hasn’t included a nice, long road trip for a while. But “staycation” is a word that’s entered all of our vocabularies now, and even an hour or two can help. This week, we socially distanced at a beach, strong wind blowing, sun shining, birds reminding us that we share the planet.
I’m enjoying reading and rereading the transcripts of the interviews I’ve done for Rumble Strip World: Voices from the road. We’ve had a few inquiries about who is in the book, what countries are covered, anything about family or solo travel, etc. and so I thought I’d share the Table of Contents.
Lauren and Steven Keys
National Parks USA
Around Lake Michigan, USA
Rocky Mountains, Canada
Mount Fuji, Japan
Ed and Jennifer Coleman
Baja California, Mexico
Cody Miller and Anna Quinn
Yosemite and Glacier, USA
Wyoming, Nebraska, USA
Alberta, BC, Canada
Florida, Texas, California, USA
Connecticut, New Hampshire, USA
Spain, France, Italy
Maine, Vermont, USA
Canada to Alaska
U.S. southwest, Mexico
Kentucky, Colorado, USA
South Africa, Tanzania
Florida, Ohio, USA, Ontario, BC, Canada
I’m not doing any traveling right now, so for @rumblestripbooks, I’m combing through photos from previous trips and posting three times, on a different theme each week. This past week it was cars – convertibles, to be specific. One my own, two from car shows in Savannah and Amelia Island. If you’d like to add your own photo of a convertible, please post to #rumblestripbooks.
Next week, it’s either beaches or mailboxes.
November 24, 2020 – Save the Date!
We’ll be holding a Virtual Book Launch of some kind. Join our email list if you want the details the minute they’re available.
Subscribers to the email list get early notice of any news like that, chances to win free copies of the books, and other items that don’t show up on the website. I try to get this blog posted to the website within a week of sending it out to subscribers, but …
You can follow us on social. Instagram is @rumblestripbooks, twitter is @rumblestripB.
The Next Book
Since I’ve started mentioning this upcoming book on my social media and on Rumble Strip Books’ Instagram, I’ve heard from people who want to know if there will be a Volume 2 and whether they can tell me their story. I have my hands full getting this one ready (in time for the holidays!) but if it goes well, then, yes, I’d love to do another collection. Let me know if you’d like to be added to the list of possible story sources.
Sitting still for a while in Florida
The view through the windshield for the past few weeks has been mostly palm trees. After an 11,000-mile trip north, west, back east, then down south, we’ve put it in ‘park’ and settled down to work on processing all the information and experiences we took in on this socially-distancing, gatherings-avoiding trip of 2020. We hope it will grow into a book next year, but right now it’s just a lot of scribbled notes and thousands of photographs.
Palm Tree and Sky, Key West
Excited to tell you that we’re now set up to take orders for our book about unforgettable moments on memorable road trips. Official publication date is November 24, 2020 but U.S. customers can visit the Blue Norther Bookstore online at the publisher website here to arrange for copies to be mailed the minute the book drops.
If you are thinking of ordering more than one or two copies, as holiday gifts, it would be a good idea to reserve your books, to make sure they’re sent on the 24th.
You can save ten per cent by ordering now, until. November 24th.
The book will only be available online, at the Blue Norther Bookstore. We’ve used Amazon in the past (and other Rumble Strip and WindWord Group books are still available there), but for this new one we’re going to handle the orders directly to ensure as prompt and responsive a turnaround as possible.
For Canadian, UK, Asia Pacific, Australian, European, and all other non-U.S. customers: We’ll be handling orders via email, in order to customize shipping and taxes. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know what books you want to order and we’ll use an invoicing method.
There! That’s enough administration. Back to the exciting part—Rumble Strip World Voices from the Road is almost ready! The book has stories from motorcycle rides in Japan and Thailand, camper van journeys through all of the U.S. national parks, a cross-country drive in a 1963 sports car, and a rock ‘n’ roll band tour on one of the coldest nights of the year.
If you are thinking of ordering in quantity because of the holiday season, please let us know as soon as possible so that we make sure the print run is big enough and we can get the books to you in time.
Favorite Photo of the Week
Met these two while driving one day in Kentucky.
The collection of interviews for Rumble Strip World: Voices from the Road is now up to 31!