Karen Gilden


Karen started freelancing in the late 70s and has been published in national magazines and major newspapers. She currently lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and a cat named Zoé.

Smashwords Interview

What's the story behind your latest book?
Camping with the Communists was finished this year. It's a memoir of a six-week camping trip through the Soviet Union in 1977.

It was a fascinating experience and one that very few Americans experienced. We drove 3,800 miles (6,100 kilometers) through four republics - Russia, Estonia, Ukraine and Georgia - on our own and without a guide or a tour group," Gilden says. "It was an adventure, a slog, an eye-opening experience. I also write about how we came to make that trip, which is a story in itself.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Looking back over my life I realize that the times I was happiest were the times I was writing a lot, whether on a big project or freelancing short articles. I just makes me happy to walk into my office every day and sit down and put words on a figurative piece of paper. So I keep doing it.
Read more of this interview.

Where to find Karen Gilden online

Where to buy in print


Camping with the Communists: The Adventures of an American Family in the Soviet Union
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 45,550. Language: English. Published: November 25, 2013. Categories: Nonfiction » Travel » By region
(5.00 from 1 review)
The ultimate road trip! This inspiring memoir follows the Gildens as they camp their way across 3,800 miles of the Soviet Union in the adventure of a lifetime. Join them as they struggle with the Soviet bureaucracy, go face to face with the KGB, steal toilet paper, smuggle a diamond, and say "Nyet!" to the border guards. "Camping" is a page-turning narrative that will amaze and delight you.
Tea & Bee's Milk: Our Year in a Turkish Village
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 57,130. Language: English. Published: May 3, 2012. Categories: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
(4.00 from 1 review)
Do you ever feel like running away, escaping the rat race, finding yourself—or the meaning of life? If your answer is "yes" you'll find inspiration in this charming series of essays by a couple who did just that. They quit their jobs, sold their house and car, and went to live in a tiny Turkish village beside the Mediterranean Sea. This is a delightful memoir of a memorable year

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