The 4th Annual Phoenix Festival of the Arts-Coming in December

The Margaret T. Hance Park in Phoenix, Arizona, is home of the fourth annual Phoenix Festival of the Arts on December 11 – 13, 2015. Jointly sponsored in part by APS and Lou & Evelyn Grub, the arts festival hosts a weekend-long event showcasing arts, entertainment, exciting food trucks, and over 125 vendor booths! And, of course, there will be a beer and wine garden.

I love craft fairs, art festivals, or book signings, either private or with a group.

Phoenix Festival of the Arts

Presented by the Phoenix Center for the Arts, the event is free.

This park, dedicated in 1992 and named for Phoenix’s first female mayor, covers over 32 acres. It is actually situated over a freeway tunnel and is part of a major cultural center that includes a Japanese Friendship Garden and Irish Cultural Center.

The Phoenix Publishing and Book Promotion group now consisting of over 582 members will have two booths strategically planned for two hour intervals in each of the three days. I will be posting the times for my participation at a later date.

Phoenix Publishing and Book Promotion

The dynamic organizer, Laura Orsini, has a full spectrum of marketing and promotion planned from banners with author’s book covers to MeetUp T’s.

I’m especially excited over the postcard that Laura is planning and having printed that will include a QR Code linking the participating authors to their websites, books, social media addresses, and 10 pages of content.

The Meetup typically meets twice a month that may include seminar type meetings with handouts or guest speakers. The wide range of topics cover everything from creative writing, publishing, self-publishing, eBooks, marketing, and social media. Within the social media spectrum are discussions covering “Life Beyond Facebook,” and other related sites.

Additionally, there is also an informal Meetup to match names to faces, network, and exchange tips. Laura has set up a group blog to keep us actively writing to which we contribute once a month (and we’ve volunteered to do so–mine is the 12th of the month). We’ve recently completed a grueling 35 day Author Blog Challenge!

This Meetup has met my expectations of finding help in the marketing of the books published for my grandfather–my responsibility even if they had been traditionally published–and I’m really looking forward to the Phoenix Festival of the Arts!

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Who Said The “Golden” Years?!

I’m not sure if this is becoming another of those very long chapters in our lives (we’ve had others), or if this is a blurb cluster. (Okay then, consider it the third in a series.) I’ve written before of the RV disaster in the summer of 2014 pitting our Forest River Windsong home on wheels against the finest RV mechanics west of the Rockies. Or maybe not (the finest). (See previous RV related posts.)

After the better part of two weeks parked near Findlay’s RV where we waited for parts and they ran the gamut of fixes, including the new radiator, it was determined that the engine was still running hot. Certainly too hot to make it to Pahrump NV (our original Fall destination); and was cautioned by the mechanic who installed a separate temp gauge at the insistence of dear hubby not to try to pull those hills, especially with the “toad” (our little Geo Tracker–also not the healthiest engine block on asphalt). After being offered under $10k for the RV as she sat, said dear hubby in a fit of unfathomable defiance threw the last of our groceries and water inside the tin can and we headed south for Yuma AZ–our Winter destination–the Yuma Foothills: Golf cart, ATV and sand rail heaven. Continue reading “Who Said The “Golden” Years?!”

Full Timing

As I’ve alluded to previously on this blog, we had a Class C Winnebago Minnie Winnie with which we used to touch off a book tour of the Great Northwest in 2013. Unfortunately, the book tour ended all too quickly after a call from my sister that my mother (then 92 years of age) was in critical condition again and back in the hospital.

In the meantime, it taught me that the proper venue made a huge difference in the kind of reception my grandfather’s books regarding his sailing adventures back in the late 1800’s/early 1900’s were received and sold. I felt if I could have continued with the trip on down the Washington/Oregon/California coast, the trip would actually have been quite successful.

Having sold our home in 2013 and living in our recreational vehicle full time, we found ourselves in the Foothills of Yuma, Arizona where it was discovered there was a schedule of craft fairs at the RV parks for all the beloved “winter visitors”. The craft fairs were gleefully attended by appreciative crowds looking for unique crafts that couldn’t be found anywhere else and added a festive occasion to their winter stay. Quickly getting into the whole craft fair circuit, a happy new venue for book sales was found to be somewhat rewarding.

Fast forward to 2014 and once again hitting the road with a slightly larger RV, Class A, again loaded with books, we headed for the east coast of the United States…except that we were under the gun with our schedule to leave Yuma and return to California for my mother (and another health crisis), forcing an unwise buy decision on a Class A, Forest River Windsong. Thinking we had most of the major issues resolved prior to our exit from Yuma, we chugged along in the heat pulling our “toad”, an old Geo Tracker.Windsong Engine

Windsong Dash            It wasn’t long, however, before it was discovered most of the major issues were not resolved after all, the band-aid fixes lasting long enough to get us to California. By the time we made Twin Falls, we were baking inside that sardine can. Marooned in Twin for just over a week while the Windsong languished at Tony’s 2T, we finally gave up their ever getting the blower-a/c fixed when he pronounced we’d be spending another weekend while he waited for yet another part.

Worrying about the toad being set properly to tow without burning up the transmission, I asked another Class A owner towing the same vehicle how it was set. Following his advice, we set the Geo Tracker as instructed only to have it totally blow the motor within 2 miles. Blown Tracker Engine We limped into our son’s house in Indiana in an RV in excess of 90o, hot, tired, and disgusted. The RV lazed another week at Bill Gardiner RV in Lafayette, IN waiting on parts and getting them, failing to notify us. We’ve now been languishing in the summer heat, rain and humidity of Indiana for a month, no greater progress either with the Windsong or the Tracker. The Windsong has loose wires going everywhere and the Tracker now has a new rebuilt engine, working on the tranny and transfer case. The books are aging in the Windsong basement storage compartments and visions of selling down the east coast a distant memory.

We got lucky in that we could stay with our son while the Captain is wrenching both the RV and toad himself, but tools and parts have spent the gas money. We’re looking at September and this is Indiana. I’m getting nervous.