Who would have thought when I started this journey of writing a story a week back in August 2011 that I’d both be a published author and published photographer, with not one but two books to my credit?

Truly incredible!  Especially since prior to me writing my first blog I hadn’t written anything meaningful since my last essay in University a couple of decades before…not that I would have called them inspired or riveting in any possible way, in fact likely the exact opposite.

Whenever I go back and reread any of my earlier blogs it always surprises me to see how far I’ve come in my writing, both in terms of style and the ability to tell a story.  I would say that I have a conversational approach to writing, which in my mind translates into an easy read…well that’s my take anyway. 🙂

I can’t really describe the feelings that surround my book launch last week, except that I felt exceptionally blessed to have had so many of my friends and supporters join me for the event.

Prior to my guest arriving on Thursday I conducted an interview with CHIN TV, which is the Italian TV channel here in Toronto which aired Tuesday and Wednesday nights on OMNI 1 (Ora Qui is an Italian language news and current affairs show that airs in Toronto).  In addition Jess (my incredible PR person) not only got me this interview, plus a spot on the Johnny Lombardi show, plus two book signings – amazing!!!

When she sent out the press releases one of the first places to respond was the store manager of the Chapters (Indigo) store in Woodbridge. As you may or may not know, Woodbridge is the epicenter of the Italian community here in Toronto, and the manager excitedly booked me for two signings based on the customer requests that he’s constantly being inundated for a photography book of Italy by his patrons…almost on a daily basis.

Right now I’m booked for Saturday May 12th, which is the day before Mother’s Day and the second signing is Saturday June 2nd which is Italian National Day.

if I look back on my life I don’t think anyone would have ever thought that I would be a published author and photographer…  It just didn’t seem on the cards given that I was only an average student “at best”, and generally not regarded as particularly smart or gifted in either a literary sense nor in general.  Clearly no where near being a literary giant, but I do think my style of writing is easy for most people to read, and so very accessible for the most part.

Isn’t it amazing what a little passion, focus and perseverance will do for you?

Now I’ve always been a voracious reader with at least two books on the go at any given time, and one I’ve been reading recently has really hit a nerve with me.  Its called the “Universe has your back” by Gabrielle Bernstein.  Admittedly I feel very aligned to the premise of the book in which it talks about surrendering yourself to the universe and focusing on positive energy and love.  I personally think there is something to this mindset, so I’m going with it!

Now for those of you that plan on reading or listening to this book I must warn you that its pretty “flowery” to say the least, however there are so nuggets to take away, so please don’t take everything on face value when, and if you decide to take the plunge with this book.  Just sayin…

Strangely now that I’ve finished publishing this second book I’ve had lots of people ask me “so what’s next?”

Well, I have to say that I’m most interested in adapting another of my writing endeavors – my other blog serial “Hanoi Posting” into a screenplay.

Most people then ask, so have you ever written a screenplay before….well, no I haven’t is my quick response!   But then again when has that ever stopped me in the past.  🙂

I mean, how hard can it be to learn how to create a screenplay from scratch, adapt it into screenplay format, then pitch it to big Hollywood studio, and then go onto win the Academy Award for best adapted screenplay!   I mean…really???   If nothing more it will keep me occupied – am I right?

And besides, if you’re going to dream….dream BIG I say!

I can already see the characters in my minds eye in the film…which is pretty cool, because as I write I’m imagining them playing the characters and the settings.  It’s sort of surreal but tons of fun!

How long will it take me?   Who knows, but that’s what I’ll begin to do in my spare time between book signings and any other publicity events scheduled for my current book.  And so, like Una storia d’amore I’m thinking it could be about a year.

Plus don’t forget I’m also a photographer, speaker and traveller at heart so always lots going on.

How about you?  What’s your next big thing?

C’mon don’t be shy…