Trip's over, car's unloaded and washed, laundry's done, there's food in the house again, a few minor home repairs and some car maintenance still to attend to. (We won't talk about housecleaning.)

It doesn't seem quite right that it's September already. I spent a good share of the summer planning my 66 trip, preparing for my 66 trip, and being on my 66 trip. But here it is, September, whether I'm ready for it or not, and time to regroup and prioritize writing and tourism projects.

Short-term, I'm working on what seem to me to be some interesting stories for upcoming issues of the three publications I contribute to. One story is my third in a row on Edwardsville car dealerships. The first two of those were on Bothman Ford and Butler Chevrolet, both legendary family dealerships on Vandalia Street/Route 66 in Edwardsville. But the one I'm working on now involves a lot of shady deals and across-state-lines crime. (If you missed the first two on Bothman and Butler dealerships, you can read them online at in the August and September issues.) Here are a couple great vintage photos from Bothman and Butler:

Albert Bothman Ford dealership, Edwardsville IL. Photo courtesy City of Edwardsville Historic Preservation Commission.
Harry Butler Chevrolet dealership, Edwardsville IL. Photo courtesy City of Edwardsville Historic Preservation Commission.
The other two articles I'm researching are Missouri stories - Waynesville's Route 66 history and the father-son promoters, the Carney family, of Rolla. 

On the fiction side of things, I seem to be accumulating a collection of, well, sort of ghost stories, that I've been writing over the past couple years. What to do with them? I'm considering an e-book or a self-publisher like CreateSpace. What do you think?

As for a longer-term writing project, I'm working on my sixth book. Although I'm not quite ready to announce exactly what it is (no contract yet), I will say that some Route 66 legends like Lillian Redman, Lucille Hammons, and Mary Colter will figure prominently in it. The goal is to have two chapters and a proposal in before the end of the year.

Tourism! Everything I'm working on seems to be both short- and long-term all at the same time! Meetings, research, planning, communications, discussion - one thing flows into another. Of course the two main projects I'm happily involved in are the October 2015 Halloween weekend Edwardsville Route 66 Conference, and the June 2015 first annual Illinois Route 66 Blue Carpet Corridor weekend. If you've been reading recent posts, you're up to snuff on the Edwardsville conference until we have some further announcements. If you missed out on the Blue Carpet Corridor announcement awhile back, here's that link:

Now, what to work on today?


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