As readers of this blog know, my publisher sent me on a book tour this winter when The Story of Beautiful Girl came out in paperback. Between Feb. 10 and March 3, I spoke in bookstores in Colorado, Illinois, Kansas, Texas, Florida, Georgia, Connecticut, Delaware, and Virginia. After a few days to catch my breath, my speaking engagements for The Story of Beautiful Girl began for the spring and I was back on the road. At that point, I traveled to Ohio, Indiana, Missouri, Wisconsin, New York, Texas, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Toronto, California, and Minnesota. I returned from the last talk for the season on May 25.
Or, to be more concise, between early February and late May, I did 40 events in 21 states – plus Canada.On the book tour, the crowds were modest, between 15 and 40 people. At the speaking engagements, they ranged from 100 to 500 to 1,200. Sometimes I did multiple events in one city on the same or consecutive days. Sometimes I spoke in one state, and a few days or weeks later, returned and spoke there again. Often I flew from city to city to city before a brief break at home. I’d unpack, see my husband, wash my clothes, do my hospice volunteer work, pack again, and head back out. I missed Hal and my quiet life, but since I love everything about public speaking, I also enjoyed every minute.
Of course, I always try to work in extra visits with my many far-flung friends – some of whom drive great distances to meet me. I also always try to make new friends. And I usually take long walks so I can learn about my surroundings, burn off calories, and stay energetic. So whenever I travel, my days are packed.
I know, I know, I’m describing a very demanding schedule. The friends who’ve been following on Facebook and Twitter have been admonishing me to slow down, take a break. And I’m happy to say that I’ve heard you. This summer I’m taking some down time at long last.And, to make the most of the opportunity to write, read, sit, think, walk, dream, and see my husband, I’ll be going offline for the summer after I post this blog. People who want to reach me for professional reasons (speaking engagements, interviews, publicity, etc.) should contact Marc Goldman of Damon Brooks Associates, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 805-604-9017. People who want to reach me for personal reasons, or because they’ve liked my books, are welcome to send me a letter (yes! a real letter! printouts of emails will also be welcome) at: Rachel Simon, P.O. Box 3673, Wilmington, DE 19807.
But before I sign off, I want to share some of the highlights of this spring. Not every highlight; I wasn’t able to take photos at every program, and I would overwhelm you if I showed you all of the pictures I have. (Though I wish I could! Sorry not to have you here, Tom and Rita O’Neill, Betsy Kachmar, the Arc of Stark County, Loui Lord Nelson, Carol and Derrick Dufresne, Laura and Brent Jackson, Kate O’Neill, Gary Blumenthal, Susan Ashworth, Betsy Small, Harriet Redman, Gretchen Raab, Anne Strainchamps, Teri Derry, Mark Davis, Joseph MacBeth, John Raffaele, Ann Hardiman, Ann Genaro, Ellen Morosoff Pemrick, Genie Cohen, Lee Sherman, Charles LaRussa, Yona Lunsky, Karen Calzonetti, Richard Oldfield, Lori Jasper, Sue Hayes, Nancy Peterson – and so many others.)
So look at these photos as just a small glimpse of my many adventures this spring. May they give you a sense of how exciting and fulfilling the last few months were for me – and why I now need the solitude and silence of this summer.
Enjoy these warm months, and I’ll see you back here in the fall!
Events and Sights – In No Particular Order
Friends, Old and New