Roving overseas with a notebook, a deadline and a pack of other journalists can also take the fun out of travelling altogether. You can – but you need to be self-motivated and flexible.You need to have good ideas and be able to sell them.
“Write to your passion,” says Don George, author of Lonely Planet’s guide.
“Marry your own passion with a publication’s editorial interests and you’ll maximise your chances – knowledge and passion can sway an editor.” “You need to be able to string two words together,” adds Jonathan Lorie, course leader of Travellers’ Tales, “but beyond that, what really matters is your attitude.
A year later (after a self-funded trip to Australia) I had one small feature accepted in Trailfinder’s free magazine.
The trip probably cost me £3,000, but I was chuffed to bits with the £75 fee for the article.
“They’ll make constant reference to your ‘holidays’.” But while free trips, global travel and your name in print sound glamorous, there are down sides.
It’s hard work, hugely competitive and – unless you are the second Bryson – you won’t earn much. Read on to find out how you can get this dream job.“Know the publications you want to write for,” reiterates Don George. Try to put yourself in the editor’s head.” Before approaching any publication, read its contributor guidelines, which are usually on the website.Some may not accept any unsolicited articles, others may have strict rules about submissions.I began proposing features to regional papers and less well-known magazines.Then came a lucky break – a contract to write a book on coral reefs and islands.It helped me get my first travel commission in a national paper.“You’ve got to treat travel-writing like a business.But also think laterally – there are around 10,000 magazines in the UK.Many women’s titles have travel sections, or you could try ... Familiarise yourself with each publication so you are pitching the right style of article on the right topic.It’s not enough that you had a good time – you need a focus and you need to tell the reader something new.“Know what the point of your article is,” says Don George.