The Six-Figure Travel Writer

All Posts in Category: Company Info

Can I Pick Up a Gift for You on My Next Trip?

When I’m traveling, I can’t help but wander into stores with lovely things and then try to think of a purpose for explaining purchasing things that catch my eye.

Museum gift shops with jewelry from local artists and finely-bound notebooks adorned with famous works of art.

Shops focusing on local handicrafts where the goods bear tags talking about the life of the woman who created the shawl or bowl or bracelet and how her work has changed conditions for her family.

And, particularly, groceries and small food producers whose every handmade product has a deep story not only of the person’s obsession with making the perfect chocolate bonbon or cassis wine, but also the history of the provision itself, along with its cultural significance.

When I go on press trips, and someone has told us their story, given us their wares to sample, and, most importantly, set aside their precious business-owner time to focus on us, the compulsion to pick up something that I’m already eyeing is basically incontestable.

As a travel writer, you can always say that such browsing is for research, but for me, it’s more.

I’m pretty nomadic, my husband is based in a normal-sized apartment…for New York (like 600 square feet is quite good/decent), and we’re not big into stuff anyway, so I’m usually not looking for things to buy for myself.

I just love giving gifts.

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Join Us at Early-Bird Prices for Our Winter Retreats to Up Your Skills, Surround Yourself with Other Hard-Working Travel Writers, and Spend the Winter Somewhere Cozy

Our retreats at our private location in New York’s Catskill mountains are not conferences. They aren’t workshops. And they aren’t classes. They’re retreats.

We’ve decked out the space with everything you need to get your focused-writer on, including:

  • workplaces for all moods, from desks with huge windows looking out on nature to comfy, sink-in chairs for snuggling in to couches piled with pillows and blankets (hey, it’s winter!) and an actual pub
  • thousands of magazines to get your pitch-idea juices flowing and inspire you with top-tier writing
  • hundreds of books on the craft and commerce of writing along with the tomes from the top travel writers in the world to help un-stick your writers block
  • all of the coffee, espresso, and tea

And you experience all of those things whenever you want on your own with our Creative Residency Program.

So when we do a retreat, we kick things up the personalization in five big ways:

  1. All of our retreat content is focused on exactly where you are. I literally present the programs differently each and every time, taking into account the skill and travel knowledge backgrounds of each individual present that week or weekend.
  2. Our retreats are kept uber-small so it’s not possible for you to get lost along the way. This group size allows me to constantly check in that the concepts we’re discussing are hitting home with each and every person there, and revisit, re-explain, or further break things down so that each person moves through the content with the group. No writer left behind.
  3. You get one-on-one time to dig really deep down into what YOU are stuck on. In each of our weekend and week-long retreats, you get one-on-one time (typically two one-on-one) to make massive progress quickly, in the middle of our educational content, so that we can slough off wherever you’re stuck and get you charging through to completing your goal for the week or weekend.
  4. We focus on the experiential. As we move through the information covered in each event–whether focused on building your business, working with magazines, learning how to be a travel writing in the field, or building your own travel content marketing gigs–we heavily alternate between hearing, doing, and discussing. In medical school, they have an maxim, “See one; do one; teach one,” that allows them to level up their students quickly through difficult tasks, and we give it the travel writing treatment. If I were to just teach you what to do and let you go home and (hopefully find the time and then) try it, you would never making nearly as much progress, if any at all, as you do by hunkering down to give something a try right away and then discussing what did and didn’t work and why so you’re prepared and patterned with how to do something the right way when you do get home.
  5. You learn from a multitude of experiences. While we alternate learning by knowledge acquisition (listening) and learning by doing (exercises), the sharing time our small group size allows is also a crucial part of expanding your horizons and sparking new ideas. As you listen to how your peers have dug differently into the exercises based on their life, work, and travel backgrounds, your pre-conceptions about how things should or need to be done will naturally expand, showing you more ideas for yourself that fit you.

We’ve currently got early-bird pricing (more than 25% off!) for four of our events coming up this winter.

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Why I Got Certified as a Business Coach and What it Means for You

Since I started pursuing professional coaching certification in March, I’ve had many conversations with other business coaches and aspiring coaches, and they often ask me the same question:

Why did you decide to get certified as a coach?

They’re asking me, though, because they don’t think that I needed to do the program.

Most of the business coaches that I’ve met started their coaching certification before they left their previous positions to pursue coaching. Before they even had their first coaching client or conversation.

Typically before they have any idea who they will coach, how, or why.

In their eyes, they needed to have the certification under their belt to begin the process of building a business around their coaching.

So, when these other coaches or coaches-in-training see me with this little fledgling business that I’ve spent the last two years busting my butt working 16 hours every day to build, it looks like I have what they think that coaching certification will bring them.

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Why Is It So Hard to Make the Changes We Need to Make to Achieve Our Dreams? (And What We Want to Do About It)

I always planned to be a professor.

Throughout college and for many years after. I laid the groundwork to go back to school for a PhD in Italian literature.

Travel writing was meant to be a way to pay the bills legally while I was in Italian working on research for a dissertation.

There’s all sorts of odd things you have to also learn about to get a PhD, at least in Italian literature.

It wasn’t enough to speak fluent, academic-level Italian. I actually was going to need to pass proficiency tests in up to three other languages, from other romance languages to unrelated ones like German. Theoretically this was so we could read literary criticism on a global scale.

I also would have needed to read and be able to speak at length in an oral exam on every single significant work of Italian literature over a roughly 1,000 year period.

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Need a Getaway to Get Things Done? Summer and Fall Catskills Writing Residency Dates Available!

If you have never tried it, the short-term (s*ht gets done) and long-term (you can 30,000-foot perspective on how you spend your time and what you’re really doing with your travel writing) benefits of taking an individual writer’s retreat are addicting.

At a conference recently, I heard author, restaurateur and actor Madhur Jaffrey explaining that she doesn’t know how her recent book would have gotten done if she hadn’t spent a week more or less in bed surrounded by papers working and sleeping in equal fits, problems immersed in the text of her project.

But even if you’re not working on something on the scale of a book currently, a residency can also guide you to what it is you should be investing your time in more deeply, as this peek at the famed MacDowell residency explores:

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How Are You Getting Where You Want to Go With Your Travel Writing?

Behind the scenes, I’ve been working on something very unusual for you guys.

In a way, you could call it the map to the Holy Grail, a la Indiana Jones–that is, if becoming a full-time, well-paid freelance travel writer sounds like a worthy mission to you!

Of course, there may or may not be poisonous snakes and collapsing tunnel floors in ancient ruins in this scenario. Unless that’s your preferred travel writing topic!

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Exciting Changes Coming to Our Weekly Travel Writing Webinars!

You may have seen that we have a very cool offer going right now for those of you interested in getting an all-access pass to the more than 500 magazine how-to-pitch breakdowns in our Travel Magazine Database, 300+-strong question-and-answer library, and 85+ hours of past webinars:

But we have some other exciting additions to the offerings in the Dream Buffet that we wanted to let you in on.

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PayPal Now Available for the Travel Magazine Database


We’re delighted to announce that you can now also use PayPal to subscribe to our 500+-strong database of how-to-pitch information for magazines looking for travel articles.

We’re working on adding this payment option for other resources, like our Dream Buffet, but PayPal is not the best at playing with others, so we’re still working out the integrations with all of our different providers and will let you know as soon as that option is available!

Outside of PayPal, we use the top-of-the-line payment solution Stripe to handle all credit card payments on all of our sites.

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Our On-Demand Coaching Concierge Now Has Answers to More than 300 of Your Top Travel Writing Questions!

Before there was Dream of Travel Writing or even The Six-Figure Travel Writing Road Map, there were questions.

I’ll never forget the time I was sitting in a room at the World Travel Market in London after one of the panels had finished up catching up on email, and a British gentleman came up and started chatting with my about what I did.

It was quite a few years ago, long before I ever even considered writing about freelancing, let alone coaching freelance business owners.

We were talking about what I did, and the conversation took a turn that it frequently did back then: a bit of puzzlement when I said that, yes, I was a blogger, but, no, I could not tell him what my blog was. I was a freelance blogger.

So I told him my mantra back then: “If I’m not getting paid, why would I write something?”

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Daily Free Travel Writing Webinars for June

In honor of our first anniversary, we’ve launched an exciting new feature: You can now stream all of our past webinars–one each day–for free.

These webinars are only available at the times listed, live, but you can catch the replay in video, audio, and transcript form, along with the webinar slides, at any time in our on-demand webinar library.

Check out the full schedule of June’s webinars and register for your favorites below.

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