All posts tagged: travel writing

handmade business cards

It’s Passport Time

Several years ago, back when I was taking my work as a writer a bit more seriously, I went to a conference for travel bloggers in Denver. It was my first time ever attending anything of the sort. I didn’t know back then that if the PR folks from an expensive hotel invite you to dinner at an equally expensive restaurant, they’re going to pick up the tab so you don’t have to sit there like an idiot wondering, “Why aren’t there prices on this menu?” and “Will I look cheap if I just order soup?” Because of the altitude, I kept getting nose bleeds at the worst possible times was also woefully underprepared in the business card department (I ran out within a few hours of arriving and had to make more business cards using hotel stationary, a pink highlighter and some yellow thread which I used to tie them up into little scrolls.  It was not my proudest moment.) But I did do one slightly brilliant thing while I was there. During the …

Guess Where I Am?

Okay, okay… I know that the title of today’s post is actually a command and not a question (and that the question mark, therefore, is totally unnecessary) but doesn’t it look weird without? At any rate, I apologize for the tardiness of today’s post.  The internet was down at Casa Richter again, which means my plans to start writing about the things I’d really like to write about were foiled once again. (What else is new?) Nonetheless, I was amused to stumble upon this blog post written by one of the ethnomusicologists I met at the CORD/SEM conference back in November (the cute one, who just so happened to introduce himself as a relationship columnist). (Click here for the full back story on that one…) I liked his post for two reasons, firstly because a good portion of it was about me and I’m nothing if not egocentric.  Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, it articulated, rather eloquently, what I’ve been feeling for a while now. I can’t write about dating for the rest of my …

The difference between a man and a manuscript…

Very hard.  The answer to yesterday’s question, for those of you still interested, is very hard.  To break through the sarcasm I’ve adopted in order to chronicle this “experiment,” to ignore all of the “empirical data” I’ve collected over the past ten months, to let go of the “perfect” sentence in favor of the imperfections that comprise reality, to remember that I’m dealing with a human being here and not a manuscript… No wonder I spent all afternoon in a funk, guzzling coffee and running through reams of stationary like most people run through toilet paper. But I did it. I wrote to Date #7 and attempted to convey plainly and without embellishment exactly what I am feeling, because as a very wise woman once told me, writing is not about perfect sentences, it’s about communicating. (Okay, I did allow myself a wee bit of embellishment—embellishment is what I do!—but I did start off with something that was very heartfelt and difficult for me to say because as Date #7 himself keeps telling me, “Nothing …

A Piece of Turkish (Afternoon) Delight

Over the weekend I received an envelope containing a check.  “Great!” I thought, “At least I’m getting paid for my final column.”  But the check wasn’t from AOL.  It was from Skirt! Magazine. A year and a half ago, my parents took me on a cruise as a graduation gift.  I later decided to try my hand at travel writing but somehow my first attempt turned out to be less about Turkey and more about the man I met in Turkey.  (This, I’m sure, comes as a complete shock). Burying the file deep within the depths of my flash drive, I resolved to be more serious in the future.  But I kept the essay, just in case, because you never know when some editor somewhere might decide that yes, actually she’d love to run a piece about an afternoon liaison on the Adriatic… Moral of the story?  I read that Skirt! Magazine was looking for “scrumptious” personal essays for its April issue and sent my little “failed attempt” to the editor.  (For all of you …

These Kiss and Tell Tendencies

It was bound to happen sooner or later.  I’m feeling a bit like Scarlett O’Hara today and no, not because I’m flouncing around in an awesome green dress made of curtains.  Rather, because my failure to think things through (specifically, how to keep my personal life personal while chronicling each episode in a very public way) has left me in a bit of a pickle.  And while I’d rather just say, “Fiddle-dee-dee!” and carry on with my destructive kiss and tell tendencies, I can’t. I’m not sure what made me think I ever could.  Actually, I take that back.  I know exactly what made me think I could.  It was a book by travel writer and Lonely Planet goddess Jennifer Cox—a book called “Around the World in Eighty Dates.” And yes, Miss Cox did exactly what the title would suggest. I happened upon said volume last summer during a stroll through the charity shops of Putney High Street.  And because I was up to my ears in critical commentary on the aesthetics of the African …

The Dawn of a New Era

It’s 5:40am.  It’s 5:40am on Saturday, actually, and I am still alive because yesterday, at the Philadelphia Writer’s Conference, I managed to not have a heart attack.  According to one PWC board member, agent meetings are a bit like speed dating.  You sign up, huddle in a corner where you commiserate with other hopefuls (or huddle in the corner, cower in the bathroom and finally cross the street to bask in the Quakerness of the local meeting house and tell yourself to get a grip, which is what I did) and wait for the moderator to call you from the holding tank into the hot seat. Having failed miserably the one and only time I went speed dating, the little room of numbered tables brought back a slew of unpleasant memories (namely my flat mate and eventual ex-boyfriend getting way more phone numbers that me) but suddenly it was 2:30: my turn to do my thing.   I met with two agents.  The first was young and bubbly and so enthusiastic about my pitch that …