About Valerie D. Perry:
Now a passionate adventurer, Valerie Perry didn’t grow up a traveler. She was the definition of a homebody and was too afraid to go to summer camp. Valerie received her college degree before her first boarding pass, but after seeing what was out there she has spent the last several years making up for lost time.
Valerie started her travel career touring North America with an organization called Silver Ring Thing. Then in October 2009, she headed out to sea as a Broadcast Technician for Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. During her cruising career she lived on five ships: Explorer, Serenade, Jewel, Liberty, and Allure of the Seas. Two years ago she traded in her SeaPass card for a metrocard and moved to Washington, DC to begin a new chapter at National Geographic.
Nearly every step of her journey has been chronicled on her blog, The Road Lots Traveled which began as a way to share her stories of life on the road with her family back home. The blog has grown over the years and now features stories, photos, and videos from all across the United States, Scandinavia, the Mediterranean, and of course the Caribbean.
Readers frequently tell Valerie that they’re living vicariously through her tales of adventure. While flattering, this motivates her to push harder and go farther. Valerie’s mission is to inspire people to live larger, more passionate and adventurous lives than they ever dreamed possible. She believes that no one should have to live vicariously through her, or anyone else. She encourages her readers to take responsibility for their lives and live them well.
Valerie is currently on a quest to see 100 National Park Service sites in the United States before the National Park Service turns 100 on August 25, 2016.
What inspires you to write?
Writing is how I process. A trip doesn’t feel complete until I sit down and write about it. I’ve been very blessed with lots of opportunities to see places I’d only read about. Through my writing I hope to inspire others to go travel and chase their dreams. Boiled down, the hope that my readers will begin to live larger lives full of adventure is what inspires me to write.
Tell us about your writing process.
It depends on the project.
For the book, I followed Chandler Bolt’s suggestion of: Mind Map, Outline, Write. The mind map was the biggest key – just dump all of the knowledge onto a page as you scribble. Go back later and sort it out.
For my blog, it’s much more stream of consciousness. As I’m on a trip or adventure there are moments that I know will make great blog posts. I typically just sit down at the keyboard later and pour them out.
What advice would you give other writers?
Write. Don’t let the fear of failure stop you. For so many years I thought, “I want to be a writer.” It had become my backup plan for life but it had also become my crutch. If I chose to pursue my dream, wrote a book, and I failed, that dream might die. I had to choose between taking the risk or letting the dream die a slow, life-long death. Obviously, I took the risk. Failing by chasing the dream is a much more nobel way to go than failing by inaction.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I’d been putting off writing my book for so long, that I needed a quick process to get it out there before I chickened out. So I chose to self-publish via Amazon. Self-publishing offers great flexibility and allows me to be more in control of the end product.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think information overload is going to continue. There is so much great, free content available online. This is awesome when you’re looking for something (like info on how to self-publish), but bad when you’re trying to sell something (like your self-published book). I think books (traditional and ebooks) need to continue to get better and better to rise to the top. Add value to your books that readers can’t get for free on the web. Well designed, well written books of excellent content will rise to the top.
What genres do you write?: Travel, Non-Fiction
What formats are your books in?: eBook
All information in this post is presented “as is” supplied by the author. We don’t edit to allow you the reader to hear the author in their own voice.