Whether you’re looking to be a professional travel writer or simply interested in sharing your travel experiences with friends and family, here are five tips to help you as you begin to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard).
• Keep your stories focused. Choose one or two main experiences or themes and then craft a blog post, article, or narrative about them. You would be amazed by how much you can write about a single meal, tourist attraction, or challenging travel moment.
• Description is your friend. In order to make your readers feel as though they are experiencing your travels through your writing, you must embrace the art of description. If this doesn’t come naturally to you, don’t worry. A technique that always helps me is to do a “multisensory brainstorming” session. I think about the sights, smells, sounds, tastes, and feel of a particular location or experience and write down adjectives or descriptive fragments associated with them. You can then use these in your writing.
• Suppress your inner critic. It’s so easy to say, “oh, nobody would want to read about that” and decide not to write after all. Every writer has felt like this at one point or another during his or her life. Try to put your inner critic to sleep and just write. You’ll be surprised by how many people do want to read about your experiences.
• Ask for feedback. It’s important to ask someone else to read your work and give you feedback. There are many formats and ways to get feedback. You could join a writing group, take a class, hire an editor, or “swap pages” with a trusted writer friend. Tell the person giving the feedback if there are particular elements you want him or her to look for in your writing (for example, overall flow, word choice, cohesiveness, etc.).
• Receive feedback with an open mind. It’s one thing to ask for feedback, it’s quite another to receive that feedback. Remember that the person giving you the feedback is trying to help you. Try to keep an open mind, and really listen to what they are saying to you. If you agree with the feedback, take time to integrate it into your writing.
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