1,000 Days Away From Home: A Complete Guide to Surviving Life Abroad [E-book Announcement]

Hola!

I’m Sarah, the owner of this website and a young, travel-loving American expat who lives abroad in Spain. I aspire to have more stamps in my passport than years on this Earth. I’m multi-lingual, curious about the world and currently have made my home base Madrid, the capital city of Spain. My main desire when I travel is to show my audience how other people in the world live through my experiences And my main goal when I travel is to encourage other Christian women to explore the world, even going to countries the media threatens to convince us are dangerous. As long as you do plenty of research and use common sense when you travel, no place in the world should be off-limits. 

That’s my background and travel philosophy but let’s get to the real reason why you’re here. 

The E-book!

I’ve compiled and answered a list of questions you might have as you decide whether or not you would like to support this new endeavor of mine and purchase this book. Let’s take a look:

  •  What will the book be about? 

This comprehensive guide will elaborate on what it’s like to live abroad on your own from the very first days and weeks to staying away for months and then years without returning home.

September 21st, 2015: I walked across the Brooklyn Bridge that morning before my flight but had no idea I wouldn't return to any US city until 2018!
September 21st, 2015: I walked across the Brooklyn Bridge that morning before my flight but had no idea I wouldn’t return to any US city until 2018!

How the idea was born: 

I initially planned to be away from home for 1 year (after a previous stint of 9 months abroad straight) but due to travel and work opportunities as well as travel restrictions when my visa was in renewal, until June 30th, 2018 I hadn’t been home for a total of 2 years and 10 months. I saw a few friends during that time period but I wasn’t able to see my parents, brother, family friends or college friends at all. After a year and a half of living abroad in Spain, I started writing down my thoughts and tips on what it’s like to stay abroad for long-term and how to survive key moments in the passing months and years you’ll be in your new country. 

Now, I would like to compile all of the information and research I’ve gathered and put it into an easy-to-read guide for anyone else who finds themselves living abroad for months or years at a time. It can also be useful for anyone who is considering living abroad for a long period of time but isn’t sure if it is something they would be able to handle. It’s for both experienced and inexperienced travelers who have spent or plan to spend a long time abroad without returning home for months to years at a time. Additionally, this book would be a good resource for missionaries or missionary trainees who desire to volunteer overseas but are unsure if they could thrive during an extended period of time abroad.

Living abroad isn't always filled with grand adventures and spectacular views but it is an experience worth having. In my book, I'll keep it real by highlighting both the positive and negative aspects to living abroad long-term.
Living abroad isn’t always filled with grand adventures and spectacular views but it is an experience worth having. In my book, I’ll keep it real by highlighting both the positive and negative aspects to living abroad long-term.
  • How long will it be and what topics will it cover?

The desired word count goal is around 20,000 words in a digital E-book format. It will be written from a female, American perspective living in a developed country that has a significantly lower salary and lower cost of living than the US. It will cover living abroad long-term in narrative form and broken down into stages (1 day, 1 week, 1 month, 6 months, 1 year, etc). 

It will cover initial culture shock and tips on how to overcome it by making conscious decisions to assimilate to the new culture in the first few weeks. It will also focus on routines and holidays traditions you should strive to maintain in order to remain connected to your home country. The content and tips can be applicable to people from multiple English speaking countries.

One of my home away from homes, plus, quite possibly my favorite place on Earth: the Plaza de España in Sevilla.
One of my home away from homes, plus, quite possibly my favorite place on Earth: the Plaza de España in Sevilla.
  • What needs to be done in order to complete it?

I need to organize my initial research, edit and condense existing blog posts on sarahlaviajera.com and take a short break from my regular freelance work in order to finish this project fully on its own. I would also like to take my time with it (3 month deadline) in order to go at my own pace by diligently and accurately compiling all of the research. 

  • How will I reinvest the profits I earn back into my website?

What I receive from this campaign will cover the cost of writing and publishing the Ebook (in terms of my time) as well as the time it will take to finish researching the topic, editing and organizing existing material that will be used in the final product. It will also enable me to dedicate my time in perfecting and tweaking this collection of life experiences and advice to help my existing audience and reach others I’ve yet to help.

Inspiration can strike even in the most ordinary of places... (Photo: Monte Pedroso in Santiago de Compostela, Spain)
Inspiration can strike even in the most ordinary of places… (Photo: Monte Pedroso in Santiago de Compostela, Spain)

A portion of the proceeds will also go towards maintenance of my website and the ability to invest in resources that will further help my audience of Christian travel loving women.

Here’s a short list of products and services I plan to invest in:

 1. High quality, digital microphone for recording and developing a future podcast series (featuring Christian women who are traveling or residing in another part of the world) ($100)

2. A paid theme for my website to add e-commerce features in order to sell the e-Book directly from my page ($45-$70)

3. E-book writing and editing software (Scrivener) ($40)

4. Sell book via Gumroad ($10/month for the subscription; $120 for the first year)

There's whole world waiting out there for you to explore...what's stopping you? (Casa Lis in Salamanca, Spain)
There’s whole world waiting out there for you to explore…what’s stopping you? (Casa Lis in Salamanca, Spain)
  • Why should you support and purchase this book?

In the past 10 years, a considerable amount of young adults (ages 18-35) have been choosing a life of travel or living abroad instead of financial stability. An estimated 9 million non-military American citizens live abroad and in a survey just over 2,000 respondents, half of “millennials” currently residing in the US would prefer to live overseas. (See source: http://fortune.com/2015/07/01/americans-move-abroad/)

In an era where travel is easier today than it ever has been before and globalization and bilingualism are the norms, it’s imperative to provide more digital resources and books for expats who choose to live abroad for long periods of time.

I feel that there is a lack of resources in this particular genre (assimilating to a new culture for a long time period) written from firsthand experience. Not only would the sales of this book provide monetary support for me and allow me to be paid to write it, it would provide immense value and insight for my readers, both present and future, who may want to stay abroad for longer but aren’t sure what awaits them on the other side of their decision.

With this first project, I would like to use it as a stepping stone to becoming a leader in making the transition to living abroad, coping with initial homesickness, culture shock, and then later reverse culture shock (when you finally do go home after being away) and offering advice to those who wish to create a permanent home away from home, wherever they choose. 

I'll make sure you get from Point A to Point B - just follow the map! [Photo: Carnival in Lalín (Ourense), Spain]
I’ll make sure you get from Point A to Point B – just follow the map! [Photo: Carnival in Lalín (Ourense), Spain]
  • What benefits will readers like you receive receive from this book?

Experienced travelers/expats will benefit from:

  • Seeing what it’s like to stay away from home for varying periods of time and see if their experience was similar (and/or better or worse)
  • Learning valuable advice and insight on how to overcome culture shock, homesickness and reverse culture shock at various stages (what 6 months abroad looks like compared to 1-2 years or more looks like)

Inexperienced travelers and expats will benefit from:

  • Reading a firsthand account from someone from a developed country who didn’t go home at all for over 2 and half years and see what staying away from their culture for so long was really like.
  • Getting a “try before you buy” deal by reading what it’s like to live abroad for a long period of time before actually doing it themselves.

These are just a handful of the many benefits you will receive from investing in the creation of this book. The experiences and rewards I am offering will also offer immense help and insight, Whether it’s needing mentoring, making a decision to move abroad or getting to know a Spanish city I’ve spent a considerable amount of time by having a personalized chat with me, there is something for everyone.

I sincerely thank you for your time in reading about my passion project and any financial support you are able to give. Each dollar you give will be an investment into my career and in turn, an investment in men and women across the globe who wish to make a life for themselves in a country that is not their own.

Muchas gracias / Thank you so much / Muito obrigado / Grazie mille! 

Whatever you do, rain or shine, don't stop traveling! The world awaits you... (Photo: London, England)
Whatever you do, rain or shine, don’t stop traveling! The world awaits you… (Photo: London, England, 2017)