Are you a writer looking for hands-on experience to improve your travel writing skills?
Do you want practice using your camera to help tell your story?
Are you interested in having some exhilarating discussions & soft travel adventures with a small, like-minded group of travel writers?
Would you love to visit the best city in the United States for culture, mystery, history, atmosphere and fun?
Join us in Charleston for our
Travel Writing & Photography Retreat.
We’ll spend time together inside the classroom learning
about travel writing and photography. There will be lectures, writing exercises, in-the-field tours, group readings & discussions, and hands-on experience to improve your writing. You'll also receive one-on-one feedback and goal setting in a private session with Roy.
You'll explore the city dreaming up story ideas, writing and making photographs to help you tell your story. This is your chance to visit Charleston, soak in it's unique vibe and brush up on your travel writing and photography skills.
Charleston, South Carolina deserves its reputation as one of America’s most diverse and interesting small cities. Travel + Leisure magazine has named it the Best City in the U.S. for the last 9 straight years. It’s rated as the 18th best city in the world.
Described as heaven for foodies and an historic treasure, it’s also known as one of the friendliest places to visit. With a thriving market area, an expansive historic district and a vibrant downtown, it’s one of the U.S’s finest and most fun tourist hot spots.
Charleston claims the second largest designated historic district in the world. Founded in 1680 as Charles Towne, you'll see the French Quarter with its beautifully restored antebellum homes, historic hotels and memorable churches. Spread over 80 walkable blocks, you’ll find historic monuments everywhere with museums, art galleries and boutique shops blended into the neighborhoods — and it’s easy to immerse yourself in all of it!
You’ll hear horse’s hooves clip-clopping along the city’s cobblestone streets, as the horse-drawn carriages gently roll through the historic district. You can take heritage walking tours and stroll through haunted graveyards, all with stories to tell. Its tourism card also offers gardens, parks, forts, museums, and plantation tours.
Charleston is considered a culinary mecca due to its first-class chefs and creative menus as contemporary chefs revive old Southern recipes for our modern palate. You can take foodie tours, sample world class seafood and feast on authentic southern dishes that reflect the city’s unique history.
If you need to get out of the heat and into the water, Charleston Harbor offers opportunities for dinner cruises, water tours, and historic cruises out to Fort Sumter. An evening cruise is a refreshing way to finish a summer day.
Travel writers will walk away from this workshop with a multitude of story ideas and a gallery of gorgeous photographs to go with whatever story you choose to focus on. Charleston is a fertile town for travel writers!
This unique destination writer’s retreat includes creative travel
writing and photography workshops. You'll learn the skills you need to be a
successful travel writer including tips to make quick improvements to your writing. And you'll learn how to produce quality photographs that editors will love and that will help you tell your story. By the end of the retreat you'll have a completed draft story and photo gallery - ready to pitch to an editor!
Charleston will inspire your writing, spark your imagination and
please your palate. You'll learn the craft of travel writing while
touring this extraordinary destination. No experience is necessary;
just bring an open mind, a laptop, or simply pen and paper. Your sense
of curiosity and creative juices will flow no matter which tools you
You’ll have time to explore the fascinating local
attractions and soak up the culture — all while learning the craft of
travel writing and photography from a seasoned travel journalist and
veteran travel photographer.
We'll spend four to eight hours in the
classroom with lectures, group discussions, readings and writing
activities. The rest of the time you're free to explore the city with
the group or on your own.
We’re working out the final details with our host hotel (it will be announced soon.) We'll have a comfortable, private meeting room for our classroom sessions and we'll hold one-on-one meetings around other parts of the hotel.
Charleston is a walkable city and walking is the best way to get around. But, if you get tired, there's a free bus circling the tourist attractions every few minutes - so it's easy to get around. During your free time and while you’re doing field research, you can explore the historic neighborhoods, the market area, downtown and other places nearby.
You'll have free time to get out and discover your own stories, and to relax. The classroom exercises will help you write personal travel memoirs and stories you can keep for yourself, publish professionally or share with friends and family on your blog.
The techniques you'll learn won’t just help you write better -- they’ll help you travel better, too. You’ll gain richer awareness and deeper insights into the places you visit.
Because you’ll be writing about Charleston and taking photos each day, you’ll delve more deeply and be more observant at everything around you.
Class sessions are meant help you write more clearly about your trip while you’re in Charleston. And they’ll help you pen your stories about past experiences and future destinations, too.
This retreat is open to writers of all skill levels. It’s crafted to
allow plenty of flexibility to concentrate on the things that interest
you most, whether it's writing, photography, or exploring the ancient town with your fellow participants.
All travel writing is grounded in a story topic and story angle. This class explores where to look for story ideas and how to develop a strong story angle.
You’ll start work on a writing assignment by developing a story topic and angle. Then you’ll spend time in discussions with your small writing group in the breakout sessions. And you’ll get some input from the instructor about how to tweak your ideas and make them shine.
From developing your introduction to outlining your article and wrapping it all up, this session will provide a step-by-step outline for crafting a winning travel piece.
Photography is an important part of travel journalism, but you don’t have to be a professional photographer to create professional-looking photos that will help sell your travel stories.
This workshop covers bringing your stories to life with images. We’ll cover the basics: subject selection, framing, composition, lighting. And we’ll show you how to take photographs that convey a sense of place, deliver a polished gallery of photos, and we'll talk about processing tips to make your photos shine. You'll also learn the top ten tips for crafting an engaging photo gallery that editors will love.
We'll go on a photo shoot to capture the lights, buildings and street activity, and gather photos for your story. You'll learn about what time is best for creating beautiful photos, and then you'll get to make some of your own!
On the last day we’ll spend time sharing your stories and reviewing your photo gallery with the group. You'll get feedback from your fellow travel writers and your instructors.
Roy Stevenson and Linda Popovich have been working and traveling together for fifteen years as travel writer & photographer.
Roy is a professional travel writer and the author of PitchTravelWrite. Over the past thirteen years, he’s had more than 1000 articles published in 200 magazines, trade and specialty journals, in-flights, on-boards, blogs and websites and has traveled on assignment around the U.S. and to dozens of international destinations.
Linda is a professional travel photographer and editor/publisher of PitchTravelWrite. Her photographs have been published in a variety of regional, national and international magazines and online. After working for 25+ years in a corporate office, she now enjoys photographing anything that keeps her outdoors, takes her to new places and introduces her to new friends.