It's been a month and a week since I last wrote a blog post. I would like credit for the several times I've sat down, opened the laptop, logged in, and drummed my fingers on the keyboard, however.
What have I done in the meantime? Altered my path two-plus times to avoid bobbing and weaving hurricanes. Spent most of a week working on deadlines in a hotel room in the Blue Ridge (which the window indicated were lovely). Wandered battlefields in Virginia with one of my closest pals. Spent most of another week working and exuding vast quantities of viral fluids in a hotel room just beyond the Beltway. Blew my nose for several more days at a friend's home outside Philadelphia. Visited my old haunts to catch up with clients, friends, and medical folks. And now I'm in the blazing leafy beauty of coastal New England, working some more and visiting with family.
Of course, most of my time in the latter half of the trip has been devoted to debating what comes next. Everything I own, with the exception of what I've carried in my car these last few months, remains in storage. I remain entirely in limbo. And my two most desirable locations are the middle of New Mexico and the seacoast of New Hampshire/Maine.
Considerations include client diversity, cash flow, cost of living (and availability of rentals to the self-employed), tax ramifications, ease of travel, book contacts for research and acquisition, outdoor fun availability ... and, let's be honest, the desire to keep exploring. Welcome to the place where freelance life and writing life collide!
At the moment, I'm seriously considering finding furnished lodgings back in my old neighborhood for the winter. My responsible streak is showing, I know. That plan would allow me to avoid a temporary change in business arrangements and buy me a little time to offload more furnishings, identify a place to live, make moving plans, approach more diversified clients, and move the book forward significantly.
For the long-term, though, returning to my long-time neighborhood is not on the table. I've done my best these last years to shake off the predictability and general malaise; I certainly don't want to wrap them around me again like a heavy sleeping bag.
So, what's next? To quote Winnie the Pooh: "Think, think, think."