When I first realized that I had spent all my money and would have to rethink and re plan my frugal retirement, I began researching retirement and fixed income finances. I found few truly helpful resources. Most of the traditional retirement literature actually focused on pre-retirement financial planning and investment. While those books certainly have their place, most of them were written ahead of the current market. More importantly, they did not address the situation for those of us already in retirement who were struggling to live on pensions, social security and much less money than we had hoped.
I also read or re-read almost all of the "thrifty" books, from the Tightwad Gazette onward. While many of these books had good tips, they were speaking primarily to young families with children. Again, much of the advice was not useful to empty nesters living on a couple thousand a month. Some of the suggestions simply were unworkable for a retirement lifestyle, in terms of time, money or physical strength. Even the best of us do-it-yourself folks are not likely to buy a nineteenth century farm house and redo it from scratch, or "dumpster dive" (I say this as the original thrift scavenger).
Somewhere "out there", loads of retirees, empty nesters and baby boomers are living on small incomes. Some could use tips and ideas, and some need to hear that there are others out there in the same boat, doing okay. I also think that there is a group of people preparing to retire having less than they think they need. These people need to know that if you don't have a million saved, you can still be okay. Most of us won't need to eat cat food or move to Costa Rica (although that doesn't sound like a bad idea).
These observations lead me to two things: First, I'll continue this blog, widening the sphere a bit. The truth is, that everything I do, from travel to quilting to home improvements is affected by my income. I can write about my life and also be sharing how to live richly in retirement. Second, a book is in the works. Where it will be published I do not know. I don't know that anyone will buy if it reaches publication. All I can do is start writing, and see where it leads me. Some of what I write will be original, some will be from this blog, and some content will be shared information from others in the same boat. The book, like life in general, will be a work in progress for awhile!
Meanwhile I'll continue to blog about the ups, downs and challenges of my fixed income retirement.