To Travel the World and Publish a Memoir: Kim Dinan (Ep. 14)
LISTEN TO THE EPISODE
Kim and her husband Brian on their way to the airport. She says, “You can’t tell, but we are scared s***less!”
Kim and Brian hiking the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal. Their travels took them to Ecuador, Peru, India, Nepal, Vietnam, Mexico, among other places.
Their daughter Juniper, holding an advance review copy of Kim’s memoir, The Yellow Envelope.
CHASING HER DREAM TO TRAVEL AND WRITE
Kim Dinan’s idea to take a one-year break to travel and write turned into a whole new life and profession.
Before her leap, she was married, owned a house, and was working as sustainability coordinator for the city in Portland, Oregon, when she realized she wanted something totally different for her life.
She managed to get her husband onboard with the crazy idea to totally shake things up and set off to travel.
They ended up selling their house and traveled for several years, a life-changing experience that Kim wrote about in both a blog and memoir.
The memoir, called The Yellow Envelope, was published in 2017.
In this conversation, we talk about how Kim set out on this journey with the intention to travel the world – and become a professional writer. How she made them both happen – and what she learned along the way.
What it was like to write and publish a memoir about their travels.
What kind of book she wanted to write: something real and relatable, especially to show how hard it can be to take a journey like this.
How before they left for their trip, some friends gave them money to hand out along the way, as gifts for those who needed them.
How the trip was really motivated by Kim’s desire to travel and to write.
What it was like to work through this decision with a spouse.
How her husband actually changed more than her, and ended up having even more wanderlust.
How they put their house on the market and allowed their future to be wide open.
Learned to have faith in something larger than herself, that things would be okay if things happened out of her control.
Learned the power of money - that it could buy a life-changing experience like this.
What things she did on her journey that helped her to start her writing career and eventually publish a book.
How she create a blog, and a following of readers.
What it’s really like to publish a memoir and promote it.
How the prospect of having a baby led them to decide to return back to the USA.
How she now writes for a living, and were also able to buy their dream house in the mountains outside Asheville, North Carolina.
3 QUESTIONS I ASK EVERY GUEST
1. What do you wish you had known before you took your leap?
2. What was the most unexpected thing that came of your leap?
3. For someone who is thinking of doing something similar, what one piece of advice would you offer?
KIM’S RECOMMENDED RESOURCES
The leap to traveling was helped by reading a lot of blogs of other travelers, many of which are defunct or abandoned now. But I suggest just googling whatever it is you want to do. I think I googled "round the world trip" and then just dove into the wealth of information that popped up.
Some books that inspired me were: Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert; Wild, by Cheryl Strayed; and pretty much anything written by Pico Iyer
As far as writing goes, I got a lot of help from: Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott, On Writing by Stephen King; The War of Art by Steven Pressfield; and How to Write a Book Proposal by Michael Larsen.
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