I thrive on routine; it gives me benchmarks for achievement throughout the day. Get out of bed – check. Turn on the computer – check. I’ve found that, when I spend the early hours of my day online, sending emails, doing research and writing my blog, the important business things are accomplished and I set myself up for success the rest of the day. Problem is, life happens and we rarely have control over what will throw our routine off the rails.
With a new freelance business, anything that makes me stand out is an advantage, so early on I decided that I wanted to choose some specialty areas in which I have personal experience and interest. For me, those are travel, biography and memoir, and disability culture. The latter I have been immersed in my entire life. However, the former require me to do research, which can feel overwhelming. So, this past week when my routine was disrupted and I just did not feel up for hours of internet mining, I headed for my happy place–the bookstore!
My latest purchases include Lonely Planet’s How to be a Travel Writer, Adventures with Camera and Pen by writer, adventurer, and photographer Anthony Dalton from Bookland Press in Toronto, and The Best American Travel Writing 2016 which includes contributions by guest editor Bill Bryson (and one of my favourite travel writers) as well as Elizabeth Gilbert, Paul Theroux and many more. I also picked up a copy of Roberta Temes’ How to Write a Memoir in 30 Days. The rationale for my shopping spree, (aside from being able to count these as business expenses!) is that, in order to edit the material, I need to know the elements that are generally considered to constitute great memoir and travel writing. So, when I need a break from the computer screen or I’m in transit, I can pick up a book and keep checking things off my to-do list. After all, my love of books and the written word is the whole reason Ann Kennedy Editorial Services exists!