“Individually we are one drop, but together we are an ocean.” — Author unknown.
Armed with the knowledge of how to launch my travel-writing career, I left the Ultimate Travel Writer’s Workshop in 2014 highly enthused. I was ready to get my first story published and start landing the amazing perks our presenters talked about.
I followed the program, and, within a few months, had my first few articles published. In less than a year, I was invited on my very first press trip. Things were going great…
That is, until I faced a few situations I didn’t know how to handle on my own. Like two well-paying print publications accepting my pitch within 24 hours.
I knew I needed the expert guidance of writers more experienced than me. I needed a travel writer’s group where I could get encouragement, and answers to my questions… and that’s precisely why I pioneered the Travel Writer’s Café.
Becoming part of a writer’s group is highly beneficial for many reasons. Here are the ones that top the list:
1. Encouragement and support
When I asked our Café members what they found most helpful about our community, the #1 answer was “the support and encouragement.”
It’s human nature to want to feel part of something. And when you’re embarking on a brand-new career, it’s even more important to have that support. You’re not out there alone. And you don’t have to muddle through by yourself.
Just the other day, a writer opened her email with her first acceptance from an editor. And another saw her name in print for the very first time.
It was less than four years ago when that happened to me, and I remember it like it was yesterday. So it was wonderful to share in the excitement with these two new writers. The whole travel-writing “tribe” (as our members proudly call themselves) got to celebrate with them.
2. Networking opportunities
I admit I’m a social butterfly, but even my colleagues who aren’t will agree that the networking that takes place in a writer’s group is priceless.
Think of it this way. Each of us knows something. Put it all together and we all know more. Sharing of information is crucial because knowledge is power.
I know a good deal about writing, press trips, and query letters. But, I’m not a social media guru. That’s not a problem, though, because when I have a question about Instagram or Twitter, I lean on my colleagues. I don’t have to spend hours trying to figure something out on my own—and that’s a huge timesaver.
3. Get published faster
One of the reasons I became a travel writer was to get published and see my name in print.
So imagine a writer’s group that shares information about which publications are seeking freelance submissions… increasing our cumulative knowledge of all the opportunities that are out there…
Our seasoned writers have the inside scoop on these magazines, including tips from the editors on how to get your article or query accepted. All of this increases your chances of not only getting published but getting published faster.
4. Get the real scoop on press trips
When I became a travel writer in 2014, no one wanted to share any information about press trips—the Holy Grail of our profession where you can enjoy free travel perks. Basically, I had to figure out the system on my own.
I got turned down for my first press trip. And it was only because I asked the PR rep if she could give me feedback on how I could be more competitive in the future that I learned some of the “insider information.”
In a travel writer’s group like the Café, we don’t keep secrets about press trips. We freely share our expertise on something many of us took at least a year or more to figure out solo.
Educator Steven Anderson said “Alone we are smart. Together we are brilliant.”
I couldn’t agree more. As a group, we are stronger, and our members reach their goals faster (not to mention have fun and make new friends along the way, too). If you’re looking for a way to get started fast… with confidence and without having to do any guesswork or trial and error… this is it. Hope to see you there!