E. N. Smith had worked in advertising for fourteen years before the grind finally wore her down. Burned out and unhappy, she chose the only sensible thing to do: she quit her job and moved to China. But what she thought was a trip to shake things up turned out to be a journey with both eye-opening and humorous results. An exploration of culture, communication, and the human ability to transcend difference, Smith's debut offers a funny and frank look at the width and breadth of the human experience. Her desire to capture the happenings of her travels began as a blog that soon morphed into something much, much more. Her book transcends definitions such as travelogue and guidebook, capturing her globetrotting adventure of self-expression and self-discovery with a rare combination of intimacy and vision. Traveling first to China followed by Thailand, Florence, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, and Singapore, her path forces her to look at the world differently and to emotionally open up to it for the first time. Going through stages of empowerment, loneliness, amazement, acceptance, and growth, in the end it is her acceptance that she is changing along the way that gives her spirit peace and strength. A master class in self-deprecation and finding the humor in every situation, Smith's debut is an honest account of a journey that doesn't end conveniently yet still manages to encourage you to take chances that challenge your view of yourself and your place in the world. It examines that age-old expression, Wherever you go-there you are, with candor, precision, and bracing honesty. Sharp, insightful, and full of wit, Black Girl, Will Travel: Wheels Up... illuminates a fascinating metamorphosis that reminds us all that there is greater gift than life-and our selves.
E. N. Smith worked in advertising for fourteen years before moving to China for six months. She currently resides in New York where she has her own consulting business and continues to travel at every opportunity.