Cliché or not, sometimes things actually do change your life. That's what happened years ago when I attended the Book Passage Travel Writers and Photographers Conference in Corte Madera, California, as a student. In just four inspiration- and fun-filled days, I met people who would become some of my closest friends and favorite editors, I improved my writing and editing (and karaoke) skills, and I found my tribe. I discovered the importance of a writing community and the value of peers and mentors who would go on to support me in the work I loved.
So it was a tremendous honor, a few years later, to be invited to join the faculty, and I'm thrilled to be on faculty again this year, for the third year. We call the conference "Summer Camp for Travel Writers," and it really does feel that way. I look forward to it all year long -- to being inspired by some of the greatest minds in travel writing, to seeing my far-flung friends, and to making incredible new friends and connections, which I do every year. This year's conference takes place in just a week and a half -- August 13-16th -- and I honestly wouldn't dream of being anywhere else in the world that weekend (which should say a lot, coming from a travel writer)!
There's still time to sign up. As always, the faculty is impressive. There's Tim Cahill (yeah, he's alive!) and Isabel Allende. And let's not forget the Three Wise Men of Travel Writing, Don George, Larry Habegger, and Jeff Greenwald. Plus so many more. There are editors from AFAR, Sunset, O the Oprah Magazine, Every Day with Rachael Ray, WestWays, The San Francisco Chronicle, BBC, WorldHum, Lonely Planet, and Travelers' Tales. And there are award-winning novelists, memoirists, essayists, reporters, bloggers, artists, photographers, agents, publishers--an A-list of wise and wonderful people eager to meet you and support you in following your dreams.
This conference is, in my opinion, a must for anyone who's even flirting with the idea of becoming a travel writer -- and it's of equal benefit to writers who want to advance their careers and learn more about craft and the industry. So I hope to see you there. Come for the inspiration, the education, the tricks of the trade, the connections, the camaraderie, the champagne, and of course, the karaoke. I promise you won't regret it. (Well ... maybe the karaoke.)
See you at summer camp!
Book Passage , 51 Tamal Vista Blvd, Corte Madera, California
The world is before you, and you need not take it or leave it as it was before you came in.” –James Baldwin