Over the last weeks I’ve been working out a plan with my publisher, Cicerone Press, to join their staff with the goal of helping to bring outstanding pilgrimage guidebook and app resources to English-speaking pilgrims who want to walk on Europe’s great camino/pilgrimage trails. I’m happy to announce we’ve come to an agreement, and I’ll be joining Cicerone’s staff as Associate Publisher at the start of next month. The position is 1/2 time, which allows me to continue pursuing the writing and guiding projects I also hold dear.
My relationship with Cicerone Press began in 2012, after I walked the Camino del Norte in Spain. I’d had to use French and Spanish language guidebooks since nothing was available in English at the time, and I figured if nobody else had done it yet, I should. Just as I was making the first inquiries, I discovered Cicerone was already working with an author for that very route. I offered to review the book when it was ready, which I did, and I liked my interactions with the company. In 2013 I walked the Via di Francesco with friends — again with no English-language guidebook available — and while I was visiting my sister in Honolulu later that year I put together a proposal to Cicerone to publish a guide for that route. They said yes, I wrote the Way of St Francis guidebook, then the Camino de Santiago guidebook (to be released in a few weeks) and now I’m working on a new Cicerone 3-volume guidebook for the Via Francigena.
I’m starting to become adept at
walking while recording my GPS tracks, taking notes on the walk and its sights, and taking photographs of my journeys. My winters in my semi-retirement are now spent at my desk where I compile my GPS tracks, gather my notes, edit my photos, lay out my maps, and write about how to enjoy the treasures of these pilgrim walks that have become so dear to me.
Working for Cicerone will certainly be a learning experience. I’ll visit company headquarters in the UK several times each year, but will mostly tele-commute from home, all of which bring their own challenges. The last time I had a permanent position in anything other than a church or church-related institution was over forty years ago! How will Cicerone’s staff react to having a pastor wandering among the desks and bookcases of their offices? As well as working with the great Cicerone crew, I’ll be working with authors, with pilgrim organizations and with local leaders who want an excellent English-language guidebook for their pilgrimage route. It’ll be fun. Cicerone’s press release is below. A big congrats and thanks to Cicerone publisher Jonathan Williams for his investment in the walking pilgrimage market. It means a lot to those of us who love the world’s pilgrimage trails.
Announcement – Associate Publisher: Caminos and Pilgrimages
20 December 2019
For immediate release
Cicerone is pleased to announce the appointment of Sandy Brown as Associate Publisher for Caminos and Pilgrimages. “Sandy’s leadership will be vital in solidifying Cicerone’s position at the forefront of English-language camino and pilgrimage guides,” said Cicerone publisher, Jonathan Williams. The new position will involve direct engagement with pilgrims and organisations, working with Cicerone authors and collaborating with Cicerone’s editorial, production and marketing teams to enhance what is already a notable portfolio of camino and pilgrimage guides.
Sanford “Sandy” Brown is an author, community activist, ordained minister and pilgrimage trekker from Seattle, Washington. Since 2008 he has walked and biked nearly 10,000 kilometers on pilgrim trails in Spain, France, Switzerland and Italy. His walk on the Via di Francesco in 2014 led to his first Cicerone guidebook, The Way of St Francis: From Florence to Assisi and Rome, now in its third printing. Sandy’s latest Cicerone guidebook is a completely revised edition of Cicerone’s pioneering guidebook to the Camino de Santiago by Alison Raju. At its release in January 2020, this new Camino de Santiago: Camino Francés guide, map book and smartphone app will put state-of-the-art resources at the fingertips of Camino de Santiago pilgrims. Currently Sandy is working on an updated Cicerone guide for the Via Francigena pilgrim walk, with two volumes set for production later this year. An ordained United Methodist minister, he holds degrees in medieval history and theology, as well as a doctorate in gender, sexuality and spirituality from Princeton Theological Seminary. Sandy lives in Seattle, USA with his wife Theresa.
In addition to the above mentioned titles, Cicerone’s current camino an pilgrimage guidebooks include The Camino Portugues (Kat Davis, 2018), Camino Inglés and Ruta do Mar (Dave Whitson and Laura Perazzoli 2019, 3rd edition),Camino del Norte and Camino Primitivo (Whitson and Perazzoli, 2019, 3rd edition), Japan’s Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage(Kat Davis, 2019), Walking the Pilgrim’s Way: To Canterbury from Winchester and London (Leigh Hatts, 2017, 2ndprinting), and many more.
Established in 1969, Cicerone stands at the forefront of walking, trekking, mountaineering and cycling guides for destinations all over the world, with nearly 400 titles in print. For more information go to http://www.cicerone.co.uk/contact
Congratulations on your new adventure with Cicerone!
My wife and I used your guide book on the Via di SanFrancesco (Florence to Rome, Oct. 2016). We couldn’t have done it without your step by step directions and GPS tracks. Aside from being the ONLY people on the walk as well as in the inns and restaurants, we had a great experience.
We are currently planning to walk the Italian portion of the Camino Francigena in October 2020 and wish we could have acquired a Sandy Brown guide book for the trek!
Congratulations Sandy!!! This is a great new adventure for you. Buen Camino!
Does this mean you will not be personally leading the June trip from Florence to Assisi?
I’m still keeping my full schedule. No worries!
Congratulations Sandy! Sounds like the perfect landing. We hope to have your guide on the
Via Francigena when we attempt another portion of it next fall. Mary and Lynn
Oh my Sandy, I have goose bumps reading this! WOW, WOW, WOW…Congratulations!!! They certainty scooped you up fast, which is an enormous compliment to you and your work! It seems like this has been one of the sweetest retirements I have witnessed!!! Congrats again!
Kathy Bonaccorsi ps if you ever need a place to stay as you go back and forth to the UK we are one hour from Boston and are most welcomed!
Good news – congratulations! Maybe you can revice the St Olav Way book too?
Congratulations. Have a good work. Happy Christmas time. see you soon in Rieti. R I T A