Hello, no I haven't vanished, life has been a crazy ride. On one hand, things have fallen completely apart. Seriously apart. Seriously and totally apart. On the other hand, things are now falling into place. The old structures are decimated, and some new one ones are being built. I hope that at least one of these new structures comes with a view. And perhaps a pool. The book is done I ordered the final proof this morning. I've had some help with proofing, but not with editing. I've been giving myself a week or so between edits to give it a rest so to speak, and now I'm confident that it's good to go. I have to make sure though.
Also, I've been figuring out how the mechanics of selling the book myself in addition to having on Amazon.com. Finding the right package and materials for mailing, the postage needed etc. I know some have asked for autographed copies, and the only way for that happen is for the books to come directly from me to you with a personalized and loving sentiment.
Book signings I will have one at my local library. Once I have copies of the book to distribute, I can donate the book when I pitch other libraries about having their own book signing. The book signing will be a fund raising event for the library, so this should be an easy sell.
Teaching I will be teaching a class in late winter/spring on heirloom gardening at a local adult continuing education program. It will start with an introduction heirloom plants, move along to seed starting and collecting, and then into organic gardening techniques and garden maintenance. Right now there is nothing like this offered by this program. I hope the response is so good that they'll add another class.
Next books Yes plural. I have two more book ideas. My next book will be a almanac or handbook. I will focus on heirloom plants, and will incorporate folklore, animal/weather phenology, and some concepts like my family garden quilt, a vegetable dye garden, and I'm sure some other garden concepts will present themselves while I research and write. For those who are not familiar with phenology, it is the study of periodic plant and animal life cycle events and how these are influenced by seasonal and interannual variations in climate.
An example of animal/weather phenology is you should plant corn when the oak leaves are the size of squirrel ears. Priceless.
With climate change, a lot of the current research and writing is about how climate change will impact existing animal/weather phenology. I want to gather as much of the existing animal/weather phenology wisdom so it doesn't vanish for good. With folklore, this wisdom is a nice complement to the history and tradition associated with heirloom plants.
The second book idea is a cookbook. I'm tailoring my 2012 garden to provide the content. I'll leave it at that.
The 2012 Heirloom Expo Originally, my first book was going to be my marketing tool at the 2011 expo. However, since my life needed to collapse completely instead, I'm hoping there will be a 2012 Heirloom Expo. If there is, and I'm planning there will be, I will be there with two books, photos, calendars, etc. and the tempting tease of the third book, the cookbook.
Grants This is a new avenue for me to walk down. Since I don't speak state or federal government bureaucratic speak, I hope there is a Rosetta Stone out there to decipher this for me. Or, a really good grant writer.
So that's the plan. I still want to do some video work, and in time I will. For now though this is the way forward.