How to Write Travel Articles
So, you want to be a travel writer but not sure what it takes to get started? Just like anything else there is a method to doing this effectively. First you have to decide where you want to publish or display your travel writing articles. In other words, who is your target audience? Will these articles be put on the web, will they be in a travel guide, will they be posted in a newspaper, or in a magazine? Deciding on where you want to showcase your written material will determine how your information will be written because all of the above mediums have their own rules, techniques, and guidelines.
When deciding your audience, it’s important that you know whether your articles will be family-oriented, whether they will emphasize site-seeing places, are they geared for students traveling abroad, for individuals on a budget, etc. Knowing your target audience upfront, will determine the type of information that will be included in your articles. For example, if an article is geared towards families, the emphasis may be on theme parks and things that would interest a family with children. If your travel article is geared towards students, you may want to provide information on hostels, concerts, or things that would interest this particular age group. Just remember to have a mission statement, central theme, and goal in mind as you construct your articles so that the information does not go off on a tangent.
Remember that travel writing is much like being a news reporter; everyone develops their own style in how they will disclose information to a particular audience. Travel writers need to find their own approach and voice as they write their articles, but first and foremost it is important that the information be interesting and that the reader is clear on what the writer is providing. It is important that the author introduce themselves to the reader. In addition, the author should indicate the purpose of the trip, if there are other travelers in the group that may be contributing to the article information, or if any expectations or quests will be forthcoming.
Most travel guides or articles carry forth a strong sense of a writer’s personality whether it is serious, witty, funny, or just straightforward. It is this type of voice that a travel writer will eventually develop and will carry forth into their articles.
There is much competition in travel writing due to our society being extremely global and people traveling throughout the world. You will find thousands of travel articles on blogs, websites, and in local and national magazines and newspapers. The difficult part is to write your material so that it stands out in the mound of interesting and not so interesting information.
Providing a fresh point of view in your writing will go a long way to making your articles visible amongst the mass of travel information available. It is about being creative and innovative as you put your written material together, yet making sure that you are providing clear and high-quality information that is useful to your readers.
Writing travel articles usually requires that the stories have a personal voice and point of view that is conducive to a particular audience. By doing this, the author gives the reader a good sense of the place they may be visiting. The goal after all, is to make your reader feel as if they were already there or to make them want to visit a particular place in the future. It is adding this personal touch and sensory-type descriptions that will fully describe the location of your choice. Although, always keep in mind that the writing should be interesting and clear.
In any location, there are the usual tourist-type attractions and this information should be included into your travel writing; however, providing the reader with something that wasn’t expected can go a long way. As a travel writer, you should strive to find that perfect balance which blends your own personal experiences and observations, use of sensory-type descriptions, practical information, and any commentary that you feel may help the reader as he makes his decision to visit a particular place. It is important to include important facts about a place such as local fishing areas, traditional foods, festivals, local myths or legends, must-see places, most interesting things to do, places that are off the beaten path, or things to do on a budget, etc. The possibilities are endless.
Include how a particular journey changed or enriched your life somehow. Remember, it is about connecting with a reader and making your articles stand out from the mass of travel information that is available today.
Some Tips for getting Started
Begin by putting together a portfolio of all your travel experiences. List all the places you have been to and the things that you saw and experienced during those trips. Review old photographs and begin to recollect those memories during those traveling excursions. It can be as simple as a camping trip or even traveling within your own home state. You can easily create online portfolios such as a blog or website documenting your travel. This is a good way to introduce your written material to online communities.
Once you have done this, start doing some research of areas that you would like to visit. Become informed about the possibilities that are available to you. Make a note of the places you want to visit and put these on your list of places to see. Put together a plan and schedule of how you will get there. If you are truly serious about writing travel articles, you can make this happen, but first start with a portfolio of your current experiences.