Travel. Write. Live. will cover almost anything that promotes travel, a fair bit about writing about travel and some thoughts about how travel has changed my life – and maybe how it will change yours. Ultimately, this blog is about my life as a travel writer, photographer and editor. How did I get here? How did I do it? Perhaps more importantly, how you can do it.
Of course, Travel. Write. Live. will feature travel stories by yours truly offering info about great far away places I hope you visit one day. I am talking about hotels and travel gear. I love to discuss both of these topics. I am talking about the vacations and the rejuvenation associated with travel, I love this too. I am talking about people and cultures that we meet along the way that make any new experience special. Yes, it is the part of travel that reminds me of Shirley and the inspiration that started In The Know Traveler.
I will share the making of In The Know Traveler and how it grew into the success it has become – I am asked about ITKT everyday by people who tell me that travel writing is their dream job. It is my dream job, so I understand. They want to know how it all works. I know that there is a lot of misinformation on the web and I want to dispel the myths and explain the real ins and outs of the real life of a travel writer and editor. What do press trips really look like and what can a writer expect on one of these adventures? Will you love it? Probably.
As an editor, I want to explain why I turn down 85% of the submissions I receive and discuss the kind of writing I look for and even some of the work I know other editors look for from freelancers – I know a bunch. What are the common writing pitfalls and how do writers avoid them? Because with so many writers hoping to land the dream job, I have a number of resources, tools and experience to help the novice and the pro, to help the travel writing community, and other types of writers, in general.
Then there is the secret mission. The mission I never outwardly shared on ITKT. So here goes, when I created In The Know Traveler I thought, and I still do think, that if we all knew someone living in Iraq or Afghanistan, maybe our armies wouldn’t be there. Maybe if we all understood that the vast majority of the population of these places are much more similar to us than we imagine – that they want to put food on the table, to enjoy their friends and families and have a few creature comforts – it would not be so easy to justify the war.
I still believe if some terrible people did some terrible things in Texas, we would not be there blowing up Texas for the next ten years – even if the government wanted to do it. At some point, the people would demand it to stop. We all have friends and family and acquaintances in Texas. We wouldn’t want our brothers and sisters and friends not to be in danger. We have not spoken up more because I believe it may be easier to view a group or culture as wrong when we don’t know or understand them.
I have used this secret mission to promote culture in all of its forms on ITKT. My logic at the time was that if we all knew more about our differing believe systems, we would discover that there is no one that is completely right or anyone completely wrong, and that we could all use a little more compassion. It would stop making sense to demonize what we are not.