A New Chapter

by Molly Greene, @mollygreene

My-new-life-CH-1_250xI’ve been AWOL from my blog – and everything else! – since early June, and I have a valid excuse: My house sold! I’ve been ready for a change literally for years now, and it finally happened. Yaaay!

When I listed the property for sale, neighbors, friends, and family all asked the same question, What are you going to do next? … and my reply was always the same.

I had no solid plans.

I was thrilled but there was little time to celebrate, because California escrows can be a bear for the seller. Mine was no exception. The paperwork, inspections, and questions and requests for information are endless. So I went to work the minute I accepted the offer, and the toil was not complete until the day the loan funded. That left little time to consider my options.

I had a few plans in place, of course. I’d decided to sell most of my furniture, namely the heavy antiques I’d been hauling around for decades. Since I’ve been downsizing for years in preparation, that was no surprise. I also knew I wanted a small home in a quiet place – but that wasn’t a shock, either, since I’d lived in the mountains since 1999.

An extreme change of scenery!

I assumed when the house sold I’d simply look for a local rental. Which I did, even checked out a tiny cabin for sale, but nothing appealed. So in the midst of the escrow madness, I asked my mother if the dog and I could stay with her for a few weeks in her tiny Pacific Beach home a block from the ocean.

Talk about a change of scenery! Although I was raised in San Diego I’ve been gone – aside from visits – for a while. It’s busy here, crowded.  There are people everywhere. Sirens roar by ten times a day. You have to lock your doors, and if you leave anything out in the driveway, someone will snitch it. On weekends, the traffic is almost too heavy to take out the car. But Trader Joe’s is half a dozen streets away – heaven! – and the grocery store a three-minute walk. And the ocean is steps away.

Oregon to Baja – the search begins

So now I’m in temporary digs, watching Craigslist, perusing low-priced sales and rentals from the Oregon coast to La Paz in Baja. Inland Northern California makes the most sense to me, some small town closer to the ocean but not right on the coast. My nine-year-old Doberman complicates the rental hunt, of course, despite his friendly, social, loving demeanor, and I expected that.

I’ve also found that August is a difficult time to execute a move. Other families considering a change have already completed theirs – before school starts – which means rentals are scarce. I’ve searched for a Class B camper van to rent but vacations have long been booked, which makes RV rentals impossible. And it’s too hot in Baja to even consider visiting.

Meanwhile, back to work!

I hadn’t written a word on my WIP since June, but now I’ve caught up on some edits, uploaded the remainder of my backlist to Draft to Digital to complete my 2016 project to go wide, and am reveling in the fact that I don’t have a mortgage to pay for the moment.

Life is good. I am grateful!

Starting a new chapter – whether real life or fiction – is a challenge, even while it’s exciting. A new beginning brings anticipation, anxiety, and, once in a while, fleeting regret. The questions are the same: Can I do this? Am I capable? Where do I start? What do I need to cover? What actions must I take to move the plot forward? And as with any story, we’ll have to wait and see.

Have any ideas for me? Leave a comment and share!

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31 Responses to A New Chapter

  1. ben August 1, 2016 at 11:56 am #

    Congrats on finally selling the house, Molly. Best of luck for whatever comes next.

  2. Kimbery Wenzler August 1, 2016 at 12:40 pm #

    Congratulations on the sale of your house and good luck on your next endeavor!

    • Molly Greene August 1, 2016 at 12:55 pm #

      Thanks, Kim! Dog in tow, here we go 🙂

  3. Belinda Pollard August 1, 2016 at 12:56 pm #

    Woohoo, Molly! I love new beginnings and the wonderful possibilities that come with them. Bless you and Frank in this new phase. Glad you’re getting to see your mum as well. Xx

    • Molly Greene August 1, 2016 at 3:06 pm #

      Thank, Belinda! I am more prepared than Frank, but he doesn’t have much choice 🙂

  4. MM Jaye August 1, 2016 at 1:03 pm #

    Here’s to a wonderful fresh start. May it bring a lot more than you bargained for (in a good way).

    • Molly Greene August 1, 2016 at 4:14 pm #

      Thanks, Maria! Have laptop, will travel – within reason. Filia!

  5. Barb August 1, 2016 at 1:23 pm #

    Move north my friend!

    • Molly Greene August 1, 2016 at 3:07 pm #

      Find me a small, rural rental that will accept an old Doberman!

  6. Kathryn Goldman August 1, 2016 at 2:10 pm #

    Last we talked, you said you’d come East for a visit. I’m a waiting on ya’!

    • Molly Greene August 1, 2016 at 3:08 pm #

      Ha! I’d love to – dog refuses to fly, so that will take some planning!

  7. Anne R. Allen August 1, 2016 at 3:48 pm #

    Congrats on making the big move. Take some time to make your decision. I did a similar thing a couple of decades ago. Left a high powered, high pressure job in the San Diego area to move to a little cottage by the sea near Morro Bay. I’ve taken a few detours to exotic spots around the globe, but I always come back to the Central Coast fog and small town life. Perfect for writing.

    If you come up this way, make sure to let me know. I’d love to show you around.

    • Molly Greene August 1, 2016 at 3:54 pm #

      Anne, thanks so much! This is actually my latest big move, the last being out of San Diego and up to the mountains and Julian in 1999. I thought that would be my last, but decided I had one more in me. And I will gladly take you up on the offer to visit if and when I get up your way!!

  8. Anne Hagan August 1, 2016 at 3:53 pm #

    My spouse and I left city life in the greater Columbus (Ohio) metro area for life in the tiny little village she grew up in (pop 450) in October of 2013. We’re loving every minute of it.

    Congrats on selling your house and good luck with your search. The right place for you will find you.

    • Molly Greene August 1, 2016 at 4:12 pm #

      I agree with you, Anne! Thrilled for you and your wife on the success of your own move … So I’m working on patience and asking the Universe to send me the perfect place, or even a series of them. Meanwhile, I’m celebrating by taking extreme advantage of my proximity to restaurants and shopping 😉 Hugs to you! I finally got my 3rd box set up on Amazon, waiting for it to go live now.

  9. Debbie A. McClure August 1, 2016 at 4:26 pm #

    As you know by now, change is necessary for growth, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Last December we moved from the small lakeside town I loved and came back to the city I was born in. The reasons are myriad, and each of them valid, but because we still owned our park model trailer up there and used it frequently, I still felt I had a toe-hold on my old life. This past Friday we closed the deal on it and I slipped into a small depression. I felt rudderless. Unbound. I’ve moved so many times in my life, you’d think it would be easy, but it felt like closing a chapter-just as you describe, Molly. It’s taken me the last two days to pull myself around and remind myself that I need this change. I need this kick in the ass. So just like you, it’s onward and upward. Keep looking up, and enjoy the journey.

    • Molly Greene August 1, 2016 at 4:37 pm #

      Thanks for sharing, Debbie, and I’m sorry for your loss, however desired. Ive moved a lot, too, and I’m gleeful about this one, but I still understand how you feel. For me it was some of the furniture I let go of – everything had a story, and I felt like I was abandoning things that were once important to me and others. But you’re right, and now we can both choose to focus on the fact that letting go opens a path for wonderful new opportunities!

  10. Laura Zera August 1, 2016 at 6:03 pm #

    Great news, Molly! Can’t wait to see where you land. In the meantime, enjoy the possibilities! xox

  11. Krista Stover August 2, 2016 at 2:46 am #

    Congrats on the new chapter of this thig called life. I love that you are downsizing . I have spent a good bit of summer downsizing by just getting rid of stuff. I am so tired of the clutter and ,well, just the stuff that was never used, just taking up space.
    I am looking forward to a new Gen Delacourt book. Maybe you can work a downsizing character in a new book that will work in tips of how you did it.
    Enjoy life,

    • Molly Greene August 2, 2016 at 9:28 am #

      Thank you so much, Krista! After all the hubbub, I need to settle down and get back to my work in progress … which I began last year, and has Gen and Mack looking for a new place, lol. Good luck with your clutter clearing!

  12. Sue Coletta August 2, 2016 at 4:28 am #

    I had Rottweilers so I know how difficult it is to find a place when your dog is one of the so-called “bad breeds.” Which is blatant breed profiling, IMO. Here in New Hampshire many insurance companies won’t sell you house insurance because of your furry baby, too. Thankfully, they’re well worth it, but that doesn’t make it any easier to deal with sometimes.

    I have no doubt that you’ll walk into a place and think, Yes! This is it! Things always have a way of working out. Enjoy the journey.

    • Molly Greene August 2, 2016 at 9:31 am #

      You’re right, Sue, on all counts, but I’ll live in a van before I’d give up my dog!! And I agree, things always work out – I’ll find the perfect place for both of us, and won’t that be great when it happens? Yay!

  13. ChemistKen August 2, 2016 at 6:48 am #

    New beginnings are both exciting and frightening at the same time. Hopefully more of the former than the latter for you. Good luck with the house.

  14. Dawn Lajeunesse August 2, 2016 at 10:12 am #

    Two years ago my husband and I decided we had enough of the obligations of home ownership, sold our house and moved into an apartment in the same general area. It only took me about 3 months (and my husband almost a year) to discover I’d never feel “home” in a place where we can’t modify our surroundings or go “out back” to sit with a book in the afternoon. So we went hunting for a maintenance free development – a little out of our geographic area, with lots of rules, but somebody else does all of the outside work and we can do whatever we want inside. It’s a small cottage, but open concept, and I’m so happy even with the compromises.

    • Molly Greene August 2, 2016 at 10:17 am #

      I agree, Dawn, about the ability to modify a place. I’ve only rented twice in my entire life and am happy to do it again for a while, but I’ll probably end up owning at some point in the future. Thanks so much for sharing!


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