|Hugh Gibson, Library of Congress|
(On a cuisine note, lovers of oatmeal raisin cookies should take note that one of the best I've ever tasted was at the intimate little Reid's Beans Coffee Shoppe Cafe, www.reidsbeans.com, on Main Street, West Branch.)
Because I'm still in the collection stage of this project (see post #14 for the various stages), I was at HHPL not to read and assimilate information, but to skim and gather possibly relevant material that I'll read later. As such, I was highly successful, making 740 photocopies and taking 270 digital photos of articles, documents, diaries, letters and images. This complements all the material I collected at HHPL during my research visit in 2011 and through my research-via-mail in 1985.
To me, the conceptualizing of my CRB book is similar to how I approached my travel articles during my 13 years as a freelance travel writer. Before I left on a trip, I would learn as much as I could about the destination. Most times, I would have a general idea of what my topic/theme/angle might be for the articles I'd write. But in the end, it was only after experiencing the place that I would know for sure what my angle was. Sometimes it would be what I had envisioned pre-trip, but many times, because of my experiences, the angle would have morphed into something completely different.