After almost a dozen years of planning, two RV's purchased (the first was not full-time-ready), debt paid down and medical coverage arranged, I have less than a month until I stop working for a living. Sure, I'll still work to supplement our lifestyle and travel, and I'll finally be able to write several hours a day instead of when I can make the time. There will still be photos to take and blogs to fill. However, my 9-to-5 life (really it's been 6:30-to-4) will finally be in the past.
Writing full-time has been a goal of mine since I began creating and publishing poetry in 2007. Since then, working around my full-time hours, I have published over 300 poems, many with accompanying photos, a poetry primer and five mystery novels (so far), in addition to having a poem purchased and published in a 6th grade textbook by McGraw-Hill. I have had over 7,000 copies of my novels distributed and I'm hoping to increase that tenfold.
Now and in the coming month the retirement transition process is our focus. My wife had already retired but continues to work a few hours a week and that will continue. Our house just sold and we have a slight timing problem -- we have to move out two weeks before my last day at work -- so we have to make arrangements to park our RV somewhere with proximity to my jobsite in the interim. We'll be selling furniture, packing stuff to keep, packing stuff to give to family or donate, and gathering the rest to dispose of.
Our first several months on the road are already planned. We'll be using South Dakota as our home state and we must visit to make those provisions. We have friends in Wyoming to call on, a campout in Moab with our Good Sam group and a few nights on the road before June's Escapade gathering in Missouri. The road then takes us to Michigan, New York, New Jersey, Boston, Montreal and Nashville before heading south for the winter.
My dad passed away when he was just 55, long before he was able to fulfill his retirement plans. Just when my wife's parents were to embark on their retirement adventures, her mom became gravely ill, thwarting their dreams. We feel very fortunate indeed to be able to achieve ours.
A couple of weeks ago, I was interviewed by a well-known blog, Universal By Design. I'm not all that comfortable on camera, as you'll be able to see, but I think I did explain my journey as a writer pretty well.
Thanks, UBD, for the interview and your other services, which have been outstanding.
Well, it's now on the news... Actual news anchors, whose job it is to talk, are now pronouncing words with the letter "T" without pronouncing the "T." Imagine "bu-un" instead of "button," "Moun-en" rather than "mountain," "cur-en" in place of "curtain." Aaargh! It drives me ba-y...
I first noticed this phenomenon a few years ago when I heard a few millennials having trouble pronouncing words with a single or a double "T" in the middle. They would get right up to the "T" sound and instead pronounce a hard vowel, whatever the following vowel was. It bugged me, but I felt sorry for the young hipsters with the speech impediment. But now, several people at work do this, people in the store, people in all walks of life, and yes, public figures and news anchors. How embarrassing!
Maybe someday I'll be the embarrassed one for speaking in such a quaint, old-fashioned, proper manner.