Hop on the Train

The week is half over! I hope everyone is doing well.

I have been in search of a travel writer’s workshop for the past several weeks. Last week I found one that sounded perfect. It’s in February of 2015. The workshop is three days and it’s in Puerto Escondido. Puerto Escondido is located north of Huatulco in Oaxaca on Mexico’s southern Pacific coast.

I remember, back in the day, when I was working for an athletic apparel company, my boss told me about Oaxaca. He said it was a must-see. I have kept that tidbit in the back of my mind for several years. And, since 40 is right around the corner, I hoped to go to Oaxaca and attend the travel writer’s workshop for my birthday.

What made this deal even sweeter, the lady who is teaching the workshop wrote a piece for the book Sand in my Bra. It’s a compilation of travel essays by women who have traveled the globe. I have a copy of this book. I read it 10 years ago in hopes that I would some day be a travel writer.

Sand in my Bra

Up until now, I thought maybe that dream was just that, a dream. But  now, I am convinced that at some point I could actually become a travel writer. I need to take the necessary steps to become a travel writer. I need to a) TRAVEL and b)WRITE ABOUT THE JOURNEY.

I have a couple travel essays, but I know I need a few more so that I can submit them to the proper publication(s). And, for a little guidance, I thought the travel writer’s workshop would be perfect.

My husband and I talked about the workshop and decided that we should go together (he would not attend the workshop though) and stay a couple of extra days to explore on our own. So, I emailed the women hosting the workshop, and to my chagrin, it already filled up. Sob….Sigh…Sob again.

Now what. Well, today, while I was at work, I was looking for a good place for a photo-op. One of my duties at ColorWare is to take pictures of our custom tech products in a variety of situations for our social media platforms. Today I was snapping a photo of the Apple wireless keyboard. The keyboard had X Dubai engraved on it and that engraving only made me want to go to Dubai. Sigh…

Then I thought about the train that the product was sitting on, and I remembered the Amtrak in Residency program for writers. I looked up the program to see if I could apply for this, and, of course, they have already chosen the writers for this program.

So, I leave you with this haiku…

Sand in My Bra

Day 24: Haiku Challenge

Take me to Dubai—
take me away from my home
and show me the world.

Do you have any suggestions for travel writing workshops?

~Nicole

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Milestone Birthday Preparation

I have a milestone birthday coming up in 2015.

I have been thinking of what I want to do for that milestone. I know this is really nerdy, but I think I’d like to attend a writer’s conference. I have taken a few online writing classes, and a couple of regular classes. You know, old school, I actually had to sit with others in a classroom. For writers, I think that is difficult. We tend to be introverted and people sometimes frighten us. I didn’t think the experience was terrible, so I am game for another live class/conference.

Here is my dilemma…which conference should I attend. I don’t have any novel ideas that have been stuffed away in the back of mind for years and years. I love reading mysteries, but the thought of writing one just sounds unappealing.

So, what do I love to write about? Me, of course. And I don’t mean that in an egotistical sort of way. I mean that I love to experience new and different things and then I like to write about them. It’s like I get to taste that experience twice. And, I borrowed that line. Here is the actual quote.

“I write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.” ~Anais Nin.

I have always enjoyed keeping a journal. I love to write personal essays and memoirs. I wrote a memoir about my trip to London last year, and I had a blast writing about it. The doggone thing was 25 pages long, and it was about a one day excursion to Windsor Castle, Stonehenge and Bath.

I also love to travel and some day, if I could be paid to be a travel writer, I would do it.

So, should I take another memoir class? How about a travel writing class? What about creative non-fiction? I love writing for magazines and I do quite a bit of research for the articles I write. It wouldn’t hurt to learn a little more about writing non-fiction.

I feel I need to answer question number one first. What type of writing conference should I attend?

Now for question number two. Where in the heck should I go? I am going to limit the course work to the United States. I live in Minnesota; are there any good conferences in the state or in the Midwest that I should attend?

East coast? West coast? Southwest? The perfect place in my mind, is a state that I haven’t been to yet. So that leaves, North Dakota, Louisiana, Alaska, Oregon, Washington, Montana or Idaho.

I hoping for a conference that not only provides me knowledge, but I also want to meet writer’s and make new connections for more freelance work.

Has anyone been to an amazing writer’s conference?

What class? Where was it? Would you recommend it?