To be more specific, what do I want to do the next time I’m in Italy? Or, to be even more specific, how much work do I want to do the next time I’m in Italy?
Here’s the plan so far: return to Italy. Likely, in June.
Alas, that’s about as far as I’ve really gotten in my planning.
Well, I have established a bit more than that. I know that I want to spend some time in Umbria. Some dear friends will be there in the middle of June, staying at Genius Loci near Bevagna. It’s a fantastic inn, and I would love to spend some time there again, with them.
But beyond that, things are still rather unsettled.
As a plan A, I’ve been thinking hard about spending a week in Venice. I’ve found a wonderful new (to me) B+B which my blogging friend and Venice expert Annie discovered a few months ago. It looks just delightful and not too expensive (particularly for Venice.)
This would give me a wonderful opportunity to do some serious research for my Second Novel, now that I am “finished” my First Novel. The quotation marks indicate that although I’ve completed the writing and editing of my First Novel, the really hard work has only begun as I try to find a literary agent to help me sell my First Novel to a publisher. I’ve no doubt this lengthy process will involve much rewriting, editing, revising, and god-only-know-what-else.
Thus, beginning serious work on my Second Novel is now essential to maintaining my sanity; mainly because I need to write, but also because I’m sure that I’ll desperately need a good project to keep me from tearing my lustrous brown hair out by its carefully tinted roots as I field countless rejection letters.
Anyhoo, the Second Novel is set in Venice, and while I’ve visited La Serenissima several times (and can do a great deal of research online, especially by reading Annie’s blog) I’m sure that by June I will need to be conducting serious on-the-ground (or, on-the-canal) research. That’s my story and I will stick to it.
After Venice, I might stop in Verona a few nights because I’ve always wanted to see the city (although NOT Juliet’s balcony since it’s a phoney.)
Or, there’s plan B. Since I’m going to be headed to Umbria anyway, perhaps I should focus once again on my favourite region of Italy and hunker down in Perugia for three weeks of intense Italian Language classes, perhaps at the Università per Stranieri di Perugia. I’ve frequently taken night classes in Italian here at home, but I know very well that nothing beat intensive language training.(This is where the hard work bit comes in.) Further, since my First Novel is set in Perugia, and I’m sure faces many future revisions, I can do more research, absorb more local colour, and shop for a new handbag in Perugia. Coccinelle, I think.
In terms of costs (and I do occasionally think about costs) I suspect both plans would balance out. Venice for a week won’t be too expensive at my new B+B, but the car rental from Verona down to Umbria would likely cost almost as much as my plane ticket from Canada.
Staying in Perugia, where I’d likely rent an apartment and wouldn’t need a car beyond the few days at Genius Loci, would be less expensive although once tuition fees for the language course are factored in, it would probably run as much as plan A.
Well, at least this is a happy decision to make!