City Tour Through Books

The end of the week is coming and I need a break from my AI immersion. Like a child I’ve asked the AI all kinds of questions to test the limitations of the software but my love for personal experiences still drives my brain. I need books created by humans.

I want to know the hands that write those words. Since I’m still doing my city tour of Paris I turned my Audible back on. While I run my errands and drive around the city I listening to My (Part-Time) Paris Life, by Lisa Anselmo.

When I listen to audio books, I prepare myself for the chosen narrator and I take notes because the voice of the book can make or break whether or not I listen to more than the first chapter. I’ve turned off some of the best seller books because I couldn’t listen to the voice speaking for one more minute. So, if you plan to turn one of your books into an audio, spend the extra money for the right voice.

A reading voice gives your books life. Those who can evoke emotion, become a male or female, and even do accents are worth the investment because they make the story real. My resting eyes smile and laugh as they bring the words to life.

Comparing the speaker in the last audio book I listened to, The Paris Bookseller, by Kerri Maher, the difference is notable. The younger voice in Lisa’s book changes the mood, the tone. I find my mind drifting more and not as connected. But it could also be that the book is written in first person. My (Part-Time) Paris Life is written more like a journal of self discovery.

Both books are about self discovery but set in different times. The story of the famous creator of Shakespeare and Company lived from 1887 to 1962. Lisa tells her own story of growing up in America and what lead her to buy an apartment in Paris in 2012. I felt both people trying to figure out what they wanted out of life, what they desire. They both wanted the answer to the big question, “Who are they?”

Sylvia Beach wanted something of own, something that meant something to writers around the world. She wanted a bookstore that was more than just a place that sold books. Shakespeare and Company became a home and through her bravery, even if she was scared to death at the time, made it’s mark around the world. Her little shop that sold books became famous because of her relationship with books and the writers behind them.

While Lisa’s story is about breaking free from her past and her dependency on her mother. She tries to break from the way her mother drilled into her to never take a risk, and not follow her dreams. She was to work hard at a “real job”, and forget become a famous singer. Her mother’s fear of following her dream to Paris, became her own. Like her book cover says, it takes running away from home to find herself.

I still have some chapters to go but I’m drawn to both stories because I’ve had similar dreams but stopped because like Lisa and Sylvia, I was told to get a “stable, practical job”. My own mother, a worry wart, had good intentions but her worries became my own. I know she just wanted her daughter to have a good job that paid the bills and helped combat all the unexpected trials that happen in life, but I’ve learned that it’s the risks that make a difference. Everything you learn from taking chances gives life meaning.

If I’m honest with myself, how many times have I cheered other people on to go after their dream and didn’t really go after my own. Like the early Lisa, the apartment in Paris is still a dream for me. I’ve tried to start my own businesses but some of them haven’t gone as planned. Success is not overnight but I keep trying.

Yes, right now I’m picturing my future book about my travels and about Paris. But my book is more of a romance fiction, and not a story of self discovery. My characters are not real characters and they’re in progress but touring the city again through books keeps my passion alive.

I hope you can find yourself and your passion through books this week. Until tomorrow! My posts are Monday through Friday.

~Yoon Ju

Imagine Inspire Create: 52 Weeks of action and gratitude is available at:

Get closer to your writing goals with my Writer’s Journal filled with writing prompts and exercises. You can find a copy at

~Yoon Ju

Published by yoonjuwrites

I’m an author in Minnesota who started out writing and illustrating Children’s books. I’ve published poetry and adult Romance Novels. I created my website and social media to reach out to other writers because the process can be lonely. I wanted to reach out to readers, writers, and those with a dream of finishing “that” novel. I share the advice of other writers and the tools I use to create my stories.

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