Rolling Stone

And I’m not talking about the rock band although I’m sure much of what’s in this post applies to members of that band and to traveling musicians, too.  Just ask Janis Ian.

One of the questions I’m often asked is, “Where do you live?”  When I say I have homes in Tucson and Seattle, the follow up question/comment is often something to the effect, “Six months in each?”  The answer to that is yes and no.

This week we’re in Cannon Beach.  Bill, Bella, and I are sitting on our porch at the Cannon Beach Inn.  We’re on vacation.  Well, more or less on vacation.  I did do one event here in town yesterday at the Coaster Theatre.  (Hey, if you’ve got a chance to speak to close to 200 folks and maybe turn some of them into fans, why the heck not?)  So this is our Cannon Beach trip which has, in recent years, somehow replaced our annual trek to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

This week comes out of the six months that are supposedly our “Seattle” six months.  But from that we have to subtract the two week family trip to Europe, a three week book tour, this near week in Cannon Beach, the ten days we’ll be spending in North and South Carolina,  the trip to Kenniwick later this month, four days each Sedona and Canada in October, and a week in southern California in November where I’ll be the Guest of Honor at Bouchercon in Long Beach.  In case you’re keeping track, that’s a big chunk out of what’s supposed to be our Seattle “six months.”

And the same has been and will be true of our “snowbird” experience in Arizona next spring.  I’m not yet sure where the Cold Betrayal tour will take us, but it won’t be time we’ll spend sleeping in our own beds at either end of the road.  And I’m not complaining.  Those are the simple realities of being a writer in this day and age. Traveling comes with the territory.  Getting out and seeing people is part of the job.

When I first arrived in Seattle in 1981, I seemed to be making constant trips back and forth to the airport, either dropping people off or picking people up.  I remember driving south on I-5 once and having a little one-on-one with the Guy Upstairs, whining to Him about, “When is it going to be MY turn to travel?”

Well, folks, I’m here to tell you, sometimes you have to watch out what your ask for.

As for the good part of being a rolling stone?  We’re not gathering much moss, and neither is our luggage.