travel writing

Posted by & filed under Travel Writing.

bel woodhouse

Being a travel writer at the moment means we need to be flexible. Right now, a lot of our usual topics are not in demand so writing about alternative topics is a good idea. Even your own life experiences can be turned into articles. 

That’s why I want to share this little story. 

A couple of days ago I put a small distress call out to friends. After two days of pain in my jaw and living on soup I knew there was no avoiding it, a dentist visit was in order.

So, a quick message out to my network of friends and voila, within 15 minutes I had my answer. A highly recommended dentist here in my corner of Mexico that spoke a little English. Because let’s face it, the last thing I felt like doing was trying to explain what was wrong in my broken Spanish. I don’t even know the Spanish word for “molar.”

And she was fantastic. Not only did she open up her practice to see me that afternoon, but the whole emergency consultation, an X-ray and antibiotics delivered to my house for free cost a mere $50.

Now that is too good not to write about. That’s a golden opportunity. So, I did.

Sitting in bed the next morning, I pitched it to a magazine that covers living abroad and had an acceptance back within an hour.

The best part is that it pays $100. The emergency dentist consultation plus antibiotics cost me $50. Which means writing paid for my emergency dentist bill, within 24 hours. 

But not only did it pay for my dentist visit, I came out on top.

The point here is that opportunities for articles can come from the least expected places. You just need to think outside the box a little.

Publications still need content. Pitched correctly, anything—even what might seem like everyday experiences—can pay the bills right now. Even the not-so-good experiences. Editors need content to keep up with an increase in online media consumption as everyone is stuck at home, making now the perfect time to pitch.

But it doesn’t stop there. After my follow-up dentist visit next week (I’m going to need a root canal or lose the tooth), I intend to pitch another series of articles to different magazines about emergency dental care in Mexico. Health is a very hot topic right now, so taking the opportunity to write about it just makes sense. Not only that, it will help pay the bills because as we all know, root canals are expensive.

Even then, it won’t stop there. The idea of “Emergency Dental in Mexico” can be pitched over and over again to other publications for months to come.

As you can see, writing about any experience can be profitable right now. You just have to find the right home for it.

The moral of the story is that although we are locked down at the moment, think outside the box and even the most dreaded “only-in-an-emergency” outing can become a story placed over and over again. Online reading is up, so now is the time to make the most of it. Happy pitching!