The Annual Book Passage Travel Writers and Photographers Conference

(aka Summer Camp)

Book Passage - Corte Madera , California
August 9 to 12, 2018


Summer's almost here, which means so is Summer Camp for Travel Writers & Photographers!

That's the not-so-secret nickname for The Book Passage Travel Writers & Photographers Conference: four days that will change your life, introduce you to your tribe, advance your travel writing/photography journey, and most importantly, launch your karaoke career.

I'm super thrilled to be on faculty for the sixth consecutive year! I'll be teaching a morning session called "Alumni Boot Camp" with the amazing Jim Benning, co-founder of the legendary World Hum and current features editor at Westways/AAA. I could not be happier about this arrangement. Jim is, among many other things, excellent at covering for me when I'm running late to our morning workshop. He even makes sure I have coffee waiting for me. He's a gem, and you will learn A TON from him.

This year's faculty also includes such luminaries as, of course, Don George. There would be no conference without Don. Literally. He's faculty chair (and he did, after all, write "THE BIBLE"). We also have on deck the fabulous Larry Habegger, Travelers' Tales executive editor, and my amazing Nepal Workshop partner-in-crime, bestselling author Jeff Greenwald. (He also wrote the world's very first travel blog.) Then there's Andrew McCarthy: If his name sounds familiar, it's probably because he wrote that New York Times book review about my latest edition of The Best Women's Travel Writing. (And he was also in some movies and is now a kickass travel writer.) And HOORAY: there's the inimitable Abbie Kozolchyk, who has been to me both editor and editee (as an oft-published BWTW contributor) as well as leader of my aforementioned Tribe. And not last and certainly not least, my karaoke soul sister, the almost frustratingly talented and brilliant Candace Rose Rardon.

Guys, this is only about half of the lineup. There are so many extraordinary people teaching under one roof, imparting combined centuries worth of industry knowledge. Come on, there's Tim Cahill! And Pauline Frommer! And Elizabeth Harryman! And many more! Plus all the incredible photography faculty whom I haven't even gotten to! They are awesome.

If none of this has convinced you, then ask yourself: What better way to spend four days than surrounded by a million books? And wine? Don’t you perhaps owe yourself a raucous night of karaoke? Also, sometimes they serve us s'mores. Usually there's whiskey. Occasionally ukuleles turn up. Last year there was a bonfire.


This conference truly does change lives. When I attended eight years ago, it changed my life. It has the capacity to change yours, too, if you let it. All you gotta do is sign up. Give yourself that gift. Invest in yourself and your creative path.

See you there!

I'll be the one hogging the mic.

Book Passage , 51 Tamal Boulevard , Corte Madera , California

For more information:

Deep Travel Morocco

The Art of Adventure -- Spring, 2019

Fez and Moulay Idriss, Morocco
March 31 to April 8, 2019

I'm absolutely delighted to announce I'll be teaching an eight-day writing workshop in late March/early April in one of my favorite places on earth, Morocco! When I visited last year, I was immediately enchanted--and I remain so. I'm thrilled to be able to return and do the work I love most: guiding writers in putting pen to paper to capture their impressions of a beautiful foreign place. Below is the workshop description--and more info (pricing, etc.) is available if you click the pdf. I hope you'll join me on this truly extraordinary journey!

Can writing about the world make it a better place? It can, insists Lavinia Spalding, author of Writing Away and series editor of The Best Women’s Travel Writing. For this immersive workshop, Lavinia helps us to explore how writing the stories of people and places can seed change—both in others and in ourselves. Our eight-day journey takes us inside the mesmerizing Fez Medina with its 9,000 byways and into Morocco’s holiest city, Moulay Idriss, in the Middle Atlas mountains. We’ll gather with Sufis, listen to the tales of traditional storytellers, connect with inspired artists, and dine with local friends who will invite us deeply into their culture. In daily sessions, we’ll articulate the places behind the headlines and the individuals behind the stereotypes. This trip is for anyone who wants to see inside the heart and soul of Morocco. Join us!

For inquiries and registration, contact

For more information:    View PDF

Nepal in Fall 2019

October 21 to 31, 2019

I'm thrilled and honored to be returning to magical, mystical Nepal for ten days—from October 21-31, 2019–to teach again for Himalayan Writers Workshop. This time I’m be collaborating with esteemed photographer Ted Seymour! More details coming soon.... (But if you can't wait, email me for details.)


Writing is an exploration. You start from nothing and learn as you go.” –E. L. Doctorow