‘Think outside the box’ is such a cliche’ these days. I wasn’t thinking outside the box when I was asked to write the story, I was (kind of thinking) outside my clothes. I had gone to a nudist colony for the first time. In the conversation pool that afternoon I met the webmaster for the Michigan park where I was staying. When he learned that it was my first visit and that I was a writer he asked me to write a story about it. Of course, I said “yes.” The story was done within two days and e-mailed to him. He was thrilled with my comments and posted them on the park’s website.
Within three months, I received an e-mail from a nudist magazine asking for reprint rights. Of course, I said “yes” and a small check arrived in the mail.
My book, Everyone’s Dream Everyone’s Nightmare, was reviewed by the book club at Chapter’s Bookstore in St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada. I stayed for three hours and discussed my book with the group. As a gift for my participation I received a box of chocolates and a $50.00 gift certificate. Neither gift left the store. I shared the chocolates with the participants of the group and I purchased the latest edition of The Writer’s Market Guide.
That night I found a listing for a nudist magazine that said they would accept reprints. I e-mailed them the next day and told them about my story.
“We only accept reprints if there is good picture support,” was the answer.
“Sorry, no pictures allowed. But I’m going to send you the story anyway and see what you think,” I answered. I sent the story.
Two weeks later I received my answer. “Sorry to take so long but we found your story so charming that, with your permission, we would like to put a cartoon drawing with the story and publish it.” A month later I received a much larger check along with a copy of the magazine.
When Jaimie Hall and Alice Zyetz were looking for stories for RV Traveling Tales, Women’s Journeys on the Open Road I sent that story along with others. It was again published. The book won the Ben Franklin Award from the Publishers Marketing Association. I republished the story in my own book Free Spirit – Born to Wander.
I have to end my success story here, but A Fine Bit of Madness, about my one day in a nudist colony in Michigan, will go on and on and on.
Joei Carlton Hossack is the author of Restless from the Start (out of print), Everyone’s Dream Everyone’s Nightmare, Kiss This Florida, I’m Outta Here, A Million Miles from Home, Alaska Bound and Gagged, and Free Spirit – Born to Wander (replaces Restless). Books may be ordered from http://www.aBooks.com/ or by calling 1-800-472-0438. Joei is an entertaining and inspirational speaker specializing in world travel and writing/publishing/promotion workshops. She can be reached at JoeiCarlton (at) Hotmail.com. Website: http://www.joeicarlton.com