682 pages, 50 chapters, seven months, many glasses of champagne in foreign cities, rewrite after rewrite, and here I am. I have finished my great opus. For the next few days I’ll be going through and checking for mistakes and inconsistencies. I have to admit that I kinda lost track of the 50 places. I can’t name them all yet, because they are still very fresh and have not yet settled in my psyche. Plus Stephanie took over 6 of the chapters because I have yet to visit those exotic places she’s been.

I can’t believe I’m done with that part–the hardest part of the book. The rest of it will feel like a cakewalk. I’ll have the manuscript over to Penguin by next Wednesday, and between now then I need to take a day or two off and not look at it. You know when you stare at something so long it starts to get blurry. That is what’s happening, it’s all just a big blur on 682 pages. 

Maybe I’ll go on a road trip tomorrow and leave my computer at home. Perhaps a night in Monterey or Carmel? A day at the spa, basking in the fact that I have written a book. Albeit with a team of stellar women. It takes village to raise a child and it takes a roomful of incredible people to get a spark of passion transformed into a book. Mental alchemy – the transformation of raw ideas into gold.

I apologize if I’m rambling. For once I don’t care if I end a sentence in a freaking preposition or if my modifier is dangling! Lucky for my modifier, I wish I could dangle sometimes!

All is well, and I am so happy I’m done with the writing part of the book, now onto the exciting parts¬–choosing pictures for each chapter, writing the dedication and acknowledgment pages, working with the publisher’s public relations department, and getting my press shot for the cover of the book. WOW!