CARLSBAD — Local author, podcaster and newspaper columnist Ryan Woldt has just released the second book in his heartwarming “Eli and Jane” series.
The novel, “Future Eli and Future Jane,” explores the realities of self-discovery through travel and unexpected love.
The story began last year with “Eli and Jane,” a tale of two people who set out to find themselves but end up finding each other along the way. In the second book, the two meet up again, this time embarking on a journey together.
“People who have been reading my books have been from all different age brackets… and it seems like each age bracket has kind of had a different experience, whether it was nostalgia for a time when things weren’t so set in… or if they were younger reading it and looking at it as like, oh, like I don’t necessarily need to have all these answers figured out today,” Woldt told The Coast News. “And so the thing that has been most rewarding is that people seem to be applying the stories to their own journeys.”
Woldt, a Carlsbad resident, graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire dreaming of becoming a writer. However, as the realities of life, money and responsibilities set in, he put that dream on hold.
Woldt worked in the restaurant industry and various management positions as he and his wife moved from city to city before finally settling in San Diego.
Then, a few years ago, Woldt and his wife finally paid off their student loans and discovered a new sort of freedom, one that allows forgotten dreams to flourish.
“My hope is that when people read it, what they’re processing is that there’s all these moments in life that we go through, and how we view them in the future may not be the same as the way we’re viewing them now at the moment, it’s just like this moment of perspective,” Woldt said.
In both novels, Woldt pulled ideas from things he knows and places he’s been. As someone who is very familiar with traveling, he was able to draw inspiration from his own life. However, Woldt made clear for those who were wondering: he is not Eli and his wife is not Jane.
When asked about a possible third book to the series, Woldt said there will be a third and final piece to the Eli and Jane story. He also looks forward to writing more books, while furthering his coffee podcast, “Roast! West Coast.”
“What I’ve learned is to not be so harsh on myself, not to be so judgmental, like I have to be at a certain point in my life or at a certain status or a certain thing,” Woldt said. “What matters is I’m experiencing things and continually adding to the story that my wife and I are building together.”
Woldt also writes a weekly craft beer and beverage column for The Coast News, “Cheers! North County,” featuring local brewers, distillers and professionals in the beverage industry.