Professional Storyteller

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"YES, I'd LOVE to . . . uhmmm...Hello? . . . Anyone?"

Following a recent performance, a nice lady came up, was very complimentary, and asked if I would be interested in performing for her group. Of course I said, "Sure!" She asked what I would charge and, because her particular group does HUGE and wonderful things for children - and doesn't have much money to do the great things they do - I said, "Whatever you offer." She was delighted, and gave me the date, March 14, 2009 . . . . which is pretty close to - that's right - NOW. I have NO IDEA where I'm supposed to be, tho' I'm supposed to be there at 7:00.

I never heard from her again.

I'd given her my card when we spoke, but nothing. I searched the paper yesterday and today - twice - and not a word. I googled key words for her group, and this community; again, nothing. Went to the Official Web Site for our town...nothing.

Silly me, I - and I hate/dread "saying this out loud" - just naturally assumed that she would touch base with me at some point in the 3-4 weeks following our meeting.

It's on the calendar in the kitchen: Her last name, "program," and "7:00." That's it.

Anyone else ever have anything remotely like this situation?

Any "gentle" advice, counsel...? Other compassionate responses?

Thanking you in advance.

No rush.

We've got a little over 5 hours.

Thanks, again.


Tom T

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Today is Tuesday, April 14, 2009.

Yesterday was our 41st anniversary.

Also our First IRS return since retiring from teaching:

MOST we've ever had to pay!!

AND the most our CPA EVER charged for his "services."

And I'm thinkin' - maybe...jus' maybe...- this storytelling dilemma of mine is NOT such a burning issue, after all.

We'll see one another this Saturday for the last alternate chapel of the year and, hopefully, I'll discover "what happened."

Regardless, I'll let you know.

Meantime, "Leave us keep Things in Perspective."

Best I Can - Deep in the Heart of Texas,

Tom T
I had a gig recently where the librarian refused to give me a physical address - ???? Very stressful.
Really I said - yes - she said "it will just confuse you." She gave me bad directions instead - so I looked up her library in google and the google mapped myself to her door - when I got there she said "Aren't you glad I gave you such good directions?" - I just smiled and said yes.
Sir Wolf, you are indeed a gentleman - to "just smile and say yes" sets a most excellent example for the rest of us, for that is precisely what was called for, so, a big WELL DONE to you and your most perceptive parents who, clearly, steered you in the Right Direction.

I'm glad you made it to the venue, and trust that "a wonderful time was had by all"!

As per the above message (immediately preceding Sir Wolf's), the lady in question was not present, so, the 'What Happened?' mystery remains unanswered.

to be continued (?) . . .

My life got complicated this year. To try to keep everyones doctors and and appointments straight and my jobs and be reached in a heartbeat if things changed on the medical front with my Mom or Dad or daughter all of whom were very sick, I bought my self a Blackberry. Not adveretising here but happy it is working for me. Now when I meet people or get a correspondance from them into the Blackberry they go. Their dates go in one place they end up in the address book and I email my self a note at some point about it. So I got through the wild fall and wnter and clear into spring with my brain exhausted but without losing anyone besides me. Well.... I found my self between hospitals one night waiting for a stop sign to turn green, yep I was that far gone. Now back from the brink the parents are stable and in good hands and my daughter beat cancer and me and the Blackberry will live happily ever after!
Wow, Carolyn -

To say that your life "got complicated" this year is, seems to me, a rather towering understatement. Waiting for the stop sign to turn green! Man, THAT is weary - not to mention 'scary'!

Still and all, glad to hear that you, your daughter and your parents all made it through a season of crises - what a blessing that is for all of you.

As for the Blackberry...glad it works for you. I'm still a bit wary of such, at this point - but, hey, that could change, right? (don't hold your breath)

Sounds as if this could be the seed for a most excellent story! Pls keep us posted - and, congrats on sucking it up, getting the Berry, and Pulling Through...


There is a healing story in this but it is still in the mire. I have a couple pieces but it needs lots of work and processing time and I think a little distance from the time it all happened. My daughter has only been out of chemo 4 weeks and Mom and Dad are stable but it is so precarious with them. We do have balance here though a first grandchild a month ago and a daughter getting married next Saturday so happy and sad lie in the perceptions and I choose to look on the bright side most of the time. I had stopped working at my storytelling ( due to all the illness) and spent the winter working on research and web presence and now am gearing up again and have a few bookings now through fall. Not the amount I want but I'm working on it. We all have to find the path that works for us and the choices are ever changing. I along with Brother Wolf and many other find google and map quest the way to go. I always print directions ( and theres the mileage for tax time) and I have a GPS in the car, one way or another I try to know who I am looking for and where to go but there will always be wrinkles thats what makes our stories! Now to just get them to GIVE us the correct info to begin with! Just thinking all this makes me want to go tell stories but thats what the Mom's are getting for Mothers Day so in awhile I'll have that covered. Have a great day!
The only reason I am giggling... is that I am guilty too. ha ha ha ha

I love you Brother Tom. Am I going to see you in Normal Illinois at the International Biblical Storytellers Conference next month?

I hope so

Dear Tom:

I know I am a little late to this thread but... I'd love to add my $.02. LOL

For me, no deal is sealed without a contract. I learned this the hard way long ago! I was once stiffed when a client called me the day before my scheduled performance and told me that she had to cancel because she "no longer had the money." I couldn't collect anything, not even a cancellation fee, because there was no contract.

When someone inquires about my services, I always obtain their FULL contact information (name, address, phone number, email, website, FaceBook, etc.). If they inquire via my website, there is a booking request form that requires that information. The dates are logged on my online calendar,the client information is entered into Plaxo (online address book that syncs with my computer and phone), and a booking confirmation packet is sent out, which includes the contract. It is tedious for sure but it saves A LOT of headache later on!

We all make errors and misjudgments at one time or another during our careers. But we learn from them too and we keep growing! I am positive that will NEVER happen to you again, right?! LOL

All my best!

This $.02 may be worth considerably more. I plan to look into Plaxo you mentioned. I am all for tech tools to organize the office side of business and make more time for the fun of reading and telling stories. You are a wealth of experience and a fountain of generosity for sharing it with all of us and I thank you!

To add to this I will share a pet peeve. My truck odometer doesnt count in tenths of a mile. So when you get directions like the right hand turn at 3/10 mi. I am stuck guesstimating unless I put the GPS on. Sometimes there are a couple roads and thats why the precise direction, which is useless unless you can count off the tenths. Even counting the miles is tricky unless you happen to look down when the odometer rolls over to the next mile. I'm always wondering where in that mile I have begun counting miles to a house etc.
My last question for people I book ; is there a big enough parking area for a crew cab truck? Thats what I drive because we are farmers and crew cab as when the family goes my son is 15 years and almost 6'4" and growing I needed that big back seat! . It was pretty funny when I went to Jo Radners workshop in Cambridge this winter. Down the block indeed was my parking spot a double length one the town had chosen to stockpile the mountain of snow on. It was about 3 feet high. I threw the truck into 4 wheel drive and jumped on top of the pile. It alarmed a gentleman on the sidewalk who showed utter suprise when I jumped out of the cab. For all the gas economy minded, my big ol Chevy gets the same mileage my mini van got and my Jeep! I dont get so many funny looks unloading calves,sheep and goats from the truck as I did with my minivan. Keep on Truckin! I am!




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