- The Jack of Hearts Remembers Me is a classic American road trip taken by a pair of evangelists (one of whom is mad, and the other might be imaginary).
- The Astrologer is a voyage-within-a-voyage, as plucky Soren Andersmann sails off to the island of Hven during a royal trip to Kronberg castle in Elsinore.
- Cocke & Bull's protagonists flee from Joppa, Maryland to the Great Dismal Swamp in the Carolinas, trekking through the Cumberland along the way. And then back to Joppa.
- The Transcendental Detective is an episode during Patience Quince's peregrinations in America while avoiding her lover, whom Patience has left behind in Algiers.
- Go Home, Miss America involves travel from Seattle, Washington to the Democratic Republic of Congo. There is also a lot of movement within Seattle, much wandering around the city.
- The Hanging Man is yet another episode of Patience Quince in America, this time a side quest while her train is delayed by dust storms in Kansas. There's some good stuff about trains, and a lot of walking around. Also someone is pursued by a bear, as the bear is itself pursued.
- Mona in the Desert tells of two parallel pilgrimages to Albuquerque, New Mexico: one in 1950, the other sometime vaguely in the 1990s.
- Antosha! drags its characters all over Mother Russia and then to Italy, Switzerland, Bohemia, and America.
- Nowhere But North is a long voyage from Manhattan to the South Pole. A wide variety of vehicles are involved.
Certainly the voyage, the hero's journey thing, is a useful framework (thematically/metaphorically and narrative-structure-wise) for a large scale work of fiction, and certainly the idea of motion is natural enough to this writer, who has had uncountable addresses over the decades. Still, I find it curious and possibly alarming (and no doubt very telling to someone--not me--with the appropriate amount of critical distance) that there is so much moving around in everything I write. I just thought of the two most recent short stories I wrote, and both of them involve a character walking along a city street having strange encounters.
Perhaps this is all because I have a fantasy of home being a place where nothing happens, where there are no adventures, where all is stable and at peace. My characters are none of them at home because they are none of them at peace, so I cannot allow them to remain at rest. Home is not an option for my poor protagonists, or at best it is very remote. Perhaps I have a secret wish to be one of the stodgier residents of Hobbiton.
I've just remembered that this is the sort of cursory analysis of my writing that I do when I'm wrapping up a first draft. I am, you see, close to the end of the first draft of my Antarctica novel, and as usual I'm wondering what I think I'm doing, writing all of these novels, wondering again if I keep writing the same story again and again, dressing up the same small set of characters in different costumes and sending them off on the same journey but having repainted the canvas backdrops and shuffled the props. Maybe. I don't know. I would like my next novel, should there be one, to be the tale of someone or someones who manifestly refuse to leave home. Like a Beckett story, maybe, all taking place in a single room.