This is my life with Jon. We’ve been doing this since I started driving him around on Book Tour and he started taking pictures.
It’s what we do.
We’re driving along, on our way somewhere and Jon asks me to pull over. There’s a barn or a tree or a horse he wants to take a picture of. I pull off on the side of the road and he finds his photo.
Sometimes I’ll find a scrap of paper to draw on while I wait. Other times I just sit and watch. Every once in a while I take a picture of Jon taking a picture.
Jon’s new book “Talking to Animals” is coming out soon. May 5th to be exact. And once again I’ll be driving him around to bookstores and libraries. It’s part of the pulse of our relationship. We’ve been doing this together from before the beginning.
I’m not good at remembering what year it was, but I do know the first book tour I went on with Jon was for “A Good Dog”. We hardly knew each other then, and Jon didn’t even own a camera.
Things have evolved.
The better I know Jon, the more he impresses me. I’ve never put myself up to the kind of scrutiny he goes through when a new book comes out. I honestly don’t think that I could handle it year after year.
As much as he’s still a part of it, Jon has moved away from the publishing world. I see his blog as his central creative force. His daily work. His ritual. His magic.
But then a book comes out and I feel that old excitement of being on the road, driving from one place to another. The talks and the people, the hot tea and the shared bagels from Dunkin Donuts. The hours spent in Battenkill Books, day after day, me opening the book to the title page, Jon signing his name. Again and again.
Maybe this year during the book tour, my blog won’t have pictures of Jon giving talks, but of Jon on the road taking pictures.
I love this about us. Our patience and support and insistence of each others creativity.
“Do you want me to go back” I’ll ask Jon, when he says more to himself than me “that would have been a good picture” as we drive by the barn, or horse or tree. “No” he says ” I don’t believe in going back”. “Are you sure?” I’ll ask. And we’ll drive on.
Except for every once in a while, when he answers “Well maybe just this one time.” And I look for a place to turn the car around.