Rules of engagement.


Well well well.

It’s been a while, and I’m really sorry – got caught up in that big ol’ pile of Things You Should Do Before A Trip (which in my case included getting your eyesight checked and getting an Unintentional Shauna O’Brien haircut – draw your own conclusions).

I think it’d be wise of me to start explaining a few guidelines for what I’m about to do.

So, join me in the FAQ Master List.


Why are you leaving?

See here. (And here, if you’re up for some nation/gender moping.)

How long will you be traveling around?

At the very least, I’ll be on the move until late 2010. By then, I hope, I’ll have landed on a better planet. Some place I feel ok living in for a couple years, if not until the day I die. Also – I’m not planning on meeting my uber-fabulous maker soon.

How long will you stay in a single place?

Depends. One-two months’ stays are probably the best fit for me: just enough to get a feel of different cities and neighborhoods, without beating yourself up too much if things turn out to be less than ideal.

How many countries will you visit?

I’m curious about it myself.


I’ve made a list of places and cities to spin, but I’m trying to be a c’mon-will-it-kill-you-to-broaden-your-horizons-just-a-little gal here – so, while I’ll watch out for anything that might pop up, say, in Barcelona, Portland or Brighton, I’ll also let fate decide for me. When it can be bothered to intervene.


Dude, I know.

How are you going to support yourself?

Glad you asked. Money’s an obvious issue here – international travel is way cheaper than it used to be, but that doesn’t mean I won’t take budget into consideration. (And no, I am not living off a trust fund.)

That said, I’ve saved up enough for an ok year – this means subletting an apartment when/where I can, a single room when/where I can’t, keeping up with the freelance work (the past couple of years I’ve been hired by Rolling Stone, Wired and a number of local magazines) and at least taking into consideration any steady gig that won’t force me to get back in Italy.

I also swore to my agent I’ll be done with Novel Number Two by the end of May. So.

And I do work from home, so I’ll tend to avoid what we like to call “the Erasmus kiss of death”. (As far as I understand, ageism is serious business in several metropolitan areas, so it’s not like I’ll be breaking any hearts here.)

Will you be able to come and go as you please? Seriously?

The subtle beauty of being a UE citizen lies in not having to fill out a gazillion forms. Most of the time. Any visit to the US falls under the Visa Waiver program: should I opt for a 3-month-plus stay, I’ll have to apply for a tourist visa. (Also: Latin American countries follow different rules, but right now the chances of me successfully negotiating a Buenos Aires sublet online are pretty slim.)

Hey, I live in an interesting city/town/village/’hood/hole in the wall, I think you should give it a try.

Drop me a line: violettabellocchio at gmail dot com

Anything else?

I’ll be applying for a couple artists’ residencies here and there: getting in is a whole other matter, so I won’t be placing all my eggs of ZOMG stability in that basket, thank you.

I’m questioning your badassness.



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Filed under note to self: remember why you're doing this

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