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Issue #312: The Rough Formula for Getting Your Travel Stories Published
July 06, 2020
Greetings Fellow Travel Writers!

. . . and WELCOME all new subscribers. Thanks for joining us.

What We’re Doing:

This coming Friday, we’ll be visiting Dalat, Vietnam. For two weeks, we’ll escape Danang’s hot summer weather.

Dalat has spring-like weather, and in fact, the town is nicknamed The City of Eternal Spring. The reason for the cool climate is the city’s higher altitude, 1475 meters, in Vietnam’s Central Highlands. It’s high enough to have moderate temperatures. Yet it’s not high enough to suck all the oxygen out of the air. Walking around will be a pleasure, not hard work.

We visited Dalat for 10 days last summer and enjoyed it so much we’ve decided next year we’ll spend the entire summer there.

Dalat is also a favorite vacation spot for Vietnamese families, and many people get married and honeymoon in Dalat because of the beautiful scenery.

We’re staying in three different places while we’re there. First, we’ll stay at a serviced apartment in the downtown area and catch up on all the things we want to see in the city.

One of our favorite attractions in town is the Hang Nga Crazy House—something you would expect if you crossed an acid trip with a house designed by Dr. Seuss. It’s an outrageously designed artistic house with sculptured rooms, connected by slim bridges, rising out of a tangle of jungle greenery. Although we’ve already been there a couple of times, we’ll return again because it’s a fun place to explore and you can’t absorb it all in one visit. More about that in our next newsletter.

After a few days downtown, we’ll head out of town to two different high end resorts where we’ll be staying in French-style villas. Dalat is also called Little Paris because of the architecture left behind from the French occupation, and the new resorts reproduce the same style.

Since we’ll be in the forest and near a lake, we plan to do some hiking, kayaking, and swimming. We’ll exercise in their fitness centers, and relax with some spa pampering, too.

We’ll also be visiting a few waterfalls including Elephant Falls, we’re bound to see a pagoda or two, we’ll tour an historic French railway station, and stroll through some of Dalat’s beautiful flower gardens. We’re not sure what’s blooming this time of year, but something will be. Dalat is also known as the City of Flowers. Most of the flowers that are sold in cities and markets throughout Vietnam come from Dalat.

We can’t wait to cool off and enjoy this beautiful city.

Editorial: The Rough Formula for Getting Your Travel Stories Published

I’m often asked by novice travel writers, “is there a single predictive element I can use to get my stories published?”

Sadly, there is no single magic ingredient.

But, there is a rough formula. It includes a variety of talents and skills that you can develop.

What are some of the most important variables to get your stories published?
- Patience
- Persistence
- Good writing ability
- The ability to spot a good travel story
- Exemplary sales and marketing skills

I’ve written many posts on that elaborate on all of these topics.

Each of these are vital skills needed to find freelance writing success.

But, there's one thing you can do to get more stories published: the more stories you pitch, and the more magazines you pitch them to, the better your chances of getting published. 

That’s my main message. You need to keep churning out a high volume of queries, as often as possible. I have often sent out 3-5 queries/week, sometimes more! And, I sent these queries out to every magazine that I thought would be a good target for my story.

I found that, over time, more and more of my stories were published. For several years, I was writing up to 15 stories each month. Once I wrote 10 articles in 12 days! Another time, I had to write 30 articles in 50 days.

These publication successes continued to snowball and soon I found myself spending less time pitching and more time writing.

I forged longstanding relationships with magazine editors, some of which I still maintain today. I pitched new story ideas when I sent each my submissions to each editor. I pitched multiple story ideas in some of my queries (i.e. more than one story idea in each query letter). 

This may all seem daunting to novice writers, especially when you're preparing your distribution lists, but after a year or two you get much faster at researching story ideas, preparing your distribution lists, writing your query letters, and writing your articles. Much faster!

Just keep pitching!

This Week's Featured Post

6 Reasons To Presell Your Travel Stories and How to Do It

Many travel writers go on press trips without having concrete assignments, and are faced with the uphill task of trying to sell their story ideas after they return.

I’m always surprised at this.  It’s reactive and it’s not good business.  And most of all - it’s hard!

My mantra is, pitch before you travel, Pitch-Travel-Write, in that order.  You should presell your travel stories before you take the trip. This proactive approach has many benefits.

Here are the 6 reasons why you should presell your stories before you travel, and why they’re important:



Are you tired of talking, thinking, and dreaming of breaking into travel writing?

Are you ready to start writing?

Many of you have asked when we’re going to offer group coaching. So, we're working on it. We’re planning to make it affordable, fun, and helpful and productive for you.

Everything will be done online with video training, a community of like-minded writers helping each other, a robust focus on the craft of writing and the art of selling, and lots of other resources at your fingertips.

Here are a few of the things we’ll be offering through our Group Coaching Mastermind program:

A group coaching place where . . .

- you’ll get helpful critiques of your story ideas
- you’ll learn how to write successful query letters
- you’ll get solid advice about pitching your stories
- you’ll get feedback on your articles
- you’ll get photography tips for preparing galleries for editors
- you’ll have an opportunity to showcase your articles & photos

A safe and helpful community where . . .

- you can ask questions and get the answers you need
- you can gain the confidence to leap over roadblocks
- you can gain insight, encouragement, and support
- you can tap into for help when you’re stuck with your writing
- you can give and receive solid advice about problems
- you can celebrate your writing successes
- you can ask for help with magazine leads to pitch your story ideas
- other members can help with“in-the-trenches” perspectives
- everyone exchanges thoughts on story ideas and what works

A mentoring and resource place where . . .

- you'll receive marketing tips about selling your travel stories
- you’ll find new resources to boost your freelance travel writing knowledge
- you’ll get advice on the craft of travel writing
- you’ll have opportunities to fine-tune your photography skills
- you’ll get a chance to share your articles & best shots

You’ll get a writing community, group coaching and resources and content so you can succeed in travel writing - and have fun with other travel writers while you’re doing it.

Registration will open in August. Get your name on the interest and you’ll be the first to hear when it opens. This Group coaching program will be limited to the first 35 registrants.

Click here to get on the Group Coaching Interest List

Upcoming Posts

July 13: Repurposing Your Travel Articles
July 20: Found a New Magazine? How to Pitch the Editor and Get Published
July 27: Four Reasons to Expand Your Writing Genres and How to Do It Success Stories

Barb Harmon

“After the death of my youngest son, I sank into what appeared to be a dark, ugly, depression. I lost interest in everything, including a successful online business.

My grief counselor pronounced a diagnosis of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). I was shocked, but relieved when she assured me she could help me cope with the symptoms.

She asked, "What do you want to do with your life?" 

Without hesitation, I replied, "I want to be a travel writer."

The first step was to gently dip my toes in the water by creating a new blog. I was writing again and it felt good. I spent hours online reading masses of information on travel writing. I didn't know if anyone would be interested in my stories, but I was determined to write them. 

An editor mentioned she might like a roundup story about Guadalajara in the future. She asked if I was interested.  Of course, I said, "yes."  But what’s a roundup story, I wondered?”

Read the rest of Barb Harmon’s deeply moving and inspiring travel writing story here . . .

Read Barb's story

Pitch Travel Write: Most Requested Links about Press Trips

Once you’ve established your reputation as a prolific travel writer, and you have a good relationship with several magazine editors, you’ll find a whole new world of travel opening up to you - that of FAM Tours and Press Trips.

These press trips and familiarization tours will provide you with free or low cost travel, if you have assignments.

Our Press Trips Resource Page gives you 16 free, full length articles on how to land these free travel assignments and cushy press trips. They show you, step-by-step, how I’ve scored more than 100 press trips to 26 countries around the world.

Access our Resource Page about Press Trips

Inspirational Travel Quote


Featured Bundle: Advanced 2-Pack Reference Guides for Travel Writers

In How to Land Press Trips and Fam Tours you'll learn about how to use your assignments to request free and low-cost travel.  You'll also get all the resources successful travel writers have at their fingertips to network with the right people and have DMOs clamoring to invite you to visit their region.

If luxury is your preferred style of travel, our manual, How to Break into the Luxury Travel Writing Market will help you move quickly into this market. And it gives you a huge ready-made list of magazines and websites interested in publishing luxury articles. You can buy the books individually, or save 10% by grabbing the bundle.

Learn more and purchase the Advanced Travel Writing 2-Pack

Live Workshops

People have been asking when our 2021 workshops in the U.S. are scheduled. They're scheduled in June, 2021, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Here are the 2021 dates:
June 3-6, 2021, Travel Writing & Photography Retreat
June 8-10, 2021, Marketing Master Class for Travel Writers

We have had a lot of interest for these workshops already. You can sign up for our no-obligation interest list for these workshops and receive our substantial early bird discounts when we open registration:


Did You Know . . .

Our Complete Marketing Master Class for Travel Writers is ranked #1 on’s Top Ten Travel Writing Workshops.

You can access the list of the top ten travel writing workshops at the link below . . .

Travel Writers Exchange workshop list: #1 Marketing Master Class

At Your Service

Coaching and Consulting
Online Courses
Vietnam 1-1 Retreat & Consulting
Expat Consulting


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HERE., is our information-packed website for travel writers. This e-zine, a series of travel writing books and reference guides, coaching programs, and our workshops all work together to give you guidance in this field.

Our aim is to provide you with practical, nitty gritty information to help you gain entry the travel writing realm and all the enjoyment that comes with it, too. 

We're thrilled to announce that is on The Write Life’s 2020 list of 100 BEST WEBSITES FOR WRITERS! 

You can see the entire list by visiting their website - click on the graphic to view the list now.

Friend me on Facebook

My Facebook page is about freelance travel writing. I frequently post about:
• links to other well produced travel websites and blogs
• links to my travel articles
• magazine cover stories and back stories
• links to resource pages
• links to coaching and mentoring resources
. . .and plenty of other useful information to get you up to speed

Link to Roy's Personal Facebook page

That's all for now. Until next week - just keep pitching! Roy

Roy Stevenson
Pitch Travel Write

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