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Monday, August 18, 2003

Purchase at Westport Library Book Sale Prompts Steinbeck Journey Revisited

Browsing among the paperbacks at last years Westport Library book sale, Mike Lauterborn came across John SteinbeckҒs 1962 best-selling novel Travels With Charley.Ӕ

Now he is about to set off on an adventure retracing the authors journey with his dog named Charley.

The 38-year-old Fairfield businessman said he intends to publish his own book after the eight-to-10 week trip, which he calls ғChasing Charley, according to todayԒs Connecticut Post

I was thumbing along and I saw a paperback of ӑTravels With Charley,Ҕ he told the newspaper. I love Steinbeck but I had never heard of the book.”

The account supervisor at a Stamford sales promotion agency said he immediately read the book and thought, ӓWouldnt this be cool to do?Ҕ

Using his sales promotional skills, Lauterborn has lined up corporate sponsors for the trip, including ExxonMobil for the gas and Coleman for the camping equipment he will he carrying in his recreational vehicle, the report said.

The newspaper did not say whether Lauterborn has already lined up a publisher. But it does say he wont be traveling with his wife Marlene or his two sons.

Curiously, there was no word whether he has a dog or whether he intends to make it his traveling companion.

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Posted 08/18/03 at 12:23 PM  Permalink



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I stumbled across your site this afternoon while doing a web search using my name and was very pleased to see that you’d picked up the CT POST story about my adventure. To answer the closing question in your article, I did not bring a dog. For one, I don’t own one but also thought it would be a hindrance given the limited space in my conversion van and danger with some of the electronics I carried on board. As such, I was “Chasing Charley” around the country, following the route Steinbeck and his dog had established, hoping to meet people they met and see many of the sites they saw. Ultimately, the adventure, which I started on September 6 and completed November 10—66 days in total—took me through 35 states and four provinces of Canada and along 16,000 miles of road. Campgrounds, small inns, friends’ couches and the occasional hotel were my accommodations; buffalo ranchers, jet pilots, French Canadian fishermen, film directors, medicine men, and the like were some of my people encounters. Mountains, deserts, lakes, oceans, volcanoes, cities, towns and beaches were the sites. And many many stories of hardship, joy, loss and hope were told to me. With luck, my book will be published later this year, by Penguin if they consent to print it. Thanks again for your support!

Posted by Mike Lauterborn on February 27, 2004 at 10:01 PM | #