The Truth of Becoming a Travel Writer

So, you’ve got the talent for writing, you’ve got the love of travel and adventure, but that’s not the most important element of travel writing. It has to be more than just a passion. It has to be a way of life you can live with or one you simply can’t live without.

When looking to get into travel writing you have to ask yourself, as I did with just about every profession I’ve ever considered (acting, flight attendant, teacher in the Alaskan bush), what are you willing to sacrifice? If you’re just starting out and don’t have a super high paying job with massive amounts of free time or work you can take on the road, then you’re probably going to be living on a shoe-string budget. There are bills to pay and equipment you’ll need before you even leave town. Once you’re in your destination you might be staying in hostels, which means giving up personal space, living out of a suitcase (that you can’t allow to explode all over the room), and trading in your comfy bed at home for the bits of cardboard that pass in most hostels for a bed. But you’re not just giving up the freedoms of having a place of your own. You’re exchanging your every day relationships with your friends for part-time friendships. Most travel writers tend to be gregarious people who make friends easily, so it’s not that hard to find someone to grab a drink with, but these are not people who know you inside and out and sometimes you’ll get somewhere in the middle of winter with hardly any other people in the same lodgings as you. Can you handle getting dinner or drinks alone? Odds are that you’ll be spending a large amount of time by yourself. So it’s important to know who you are and know your own mind.

Speaking of relationships, for some people the hardest adjustment deals with romantic relationships. If you’re lucky enough to have someone at home who doesn’t mind you being away all the time then you’re in great shape, but often times the men or women you meet might not take a relationship with you seriously if they know you’re not going to be around to cultivate it. Even if you find someone who is willing to do these things, there is an immense amount of work that goes into maintaining that relationship compounded on top of the work it takes to maintain a presence in the media world while traveling. Are you prepared to put forth that effort into a long distance relationship while working towards your goals?

Despite the aforementioned lack of outward glamour when you’re beginning, or for any writer who isn’t employed by a luxury travel magazine, you are trading all of those things for mountains towering overhead, awe-inspiring landscapes, beachside rides on horseback, city lights glittering in the night, new friends from every walk of life, evenings with a drink in hand listening to live music, afternoons in street side cafes, whirlwind romances, and endless adventure.

What it really boils down to:
“Would you be willing to trade all of this, from this day to that, for once chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they may never take our freedoooooom!” Wait a minute… that’s from Braveheart, but the point is the same. To rephrase, would you be willing to trade every bit of a normal life for the chance to tell the world how you lived free?

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Traversing Tempe

Let’s get this out of the way, Arizona is HOT! I mean that literally and metaphorically. It was well over 100 degrees during my little Jaunt around Tempe, but that didn’t deter me. I was determined to show you all the city has to offer.

There’s much more to it than just the college scene. It’s a better city in the other 8 months in the year when it’s not over 100 degrees, but there’s still plenty to do int he summer. And, boy, do they LOVE their air conditioning.

Keeping cool in between filming

There’s a million and one places to eat and drink on Mill Avenue during the day (at night college kids take over). There’s plenty of activities to do like horseback riding at Papago Stables if you want that western experience, kayaking Tempe Town Lake, hiking in Papago Park, and catching a comedy show at the famous Tempe Improv.

However, instead of telling you all about what there is to do how about I show you?

Presenting my first ever video blog! I anticipate this to become a monthly staple of Taylor’s Titillating Travels. So, please, sit back, relax, and enjoy!

Here is a close up of that fascinating gentleman(?) in a skirt.

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So next time you’re dropping off a son/daughter, sibling, or relative off at Arizona State University or just looking for a place to go where the weather is always warm consider visiting some of these places. Be sure to check out the links to some of the places we visited!

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Happy travels!

A very special thanks to:
Curry Corner
Jorge Cajones @ World of Beer
ASU Gammage
Casey Moore’s Oyster House
Four Peaks Brewing Company