Book: An Egg and A Cigarette - Tales of a Family's Volunteering in Ecuador and Peru by Shari Harris-Dunningcategories: Book, Family Travel, Volunteer, Ecuador, Peru, Spanish, Banos Ecuador, La Bib, Volunteer South America, Free Volunteer Projects, Arequipa, South America Travel
Shari Harris-Dunningabout this book: This is a book about our family's volunteer adventures in Ecuador and Peru. I was inspired to write the book purely for the selfish reason of wanting to provide written documentation of this incredible experience. One year after the experience, I was yearning to reflect on it all and I began to write and write and write and write. My intent was not to publish a book, but to record our experiences so my daughters would be able to reflect on it in their later years. At 25,000 words, I gave the draft to some friends and they said "you should publish this!"
The primary readers of this book are families who are looking for both inspiration and resource information on how to do something similar. It doesn't have to be Ecuador and Peru, and it doesn't even have to be out of their own community.
I actually wrote the book quite quickly. It came out of me, more as a need than anything else. When it came time to publish, I found a company I liked a lot and they recommended to me my editor. She was fantastic to work with.
The title of the book was more of a joke. I had another title in mind. When I gave a draft manuscript to my sister-in-law, after reading it, she said to me jokingly, "You should name the book An Egg and A Cigarette!" I thought about her joke and decided it had merit. It's unusual, eye catching and I thinking causes people to scratch their heads and wonder why in the world that's the title.
I absolutely love this photograph of my family. I sent it to my publisher and he designed the cover. I love the colors and couldn't be more delighted with the way it turned out.
I did a lot of research prior to the trip and as we all kept journals and blogs and were told a lot of interesting stories, this became the heart of my book.
I learned so much from writing and published the book. It was a terrific experience and a true labor of love. I am also very proud to have won an award for my book the following year. I received a first place award for Best Travel Book - English in the 2012 International Latino Book Awards.
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