Traveling is not a new experience for my husband, Alan, and me. If there were such a word as “travelholics,” it would apply to us. We have lived in four states in Australia and seven different countries and worked in many other countries for lesser periods, always at short notice. When we are not traveling for work, we travel for pleasure.
Two years ago, Alan came to Peru to work for two weeks…and we’re still here. Our time in Peru kept being extended, so it was time to find something fulfilling for me to do.
I decided that writing was the way to go. I had written a couple of articles for Down Under Quilts and enjoyed it. But here I was, in Peru, without even a sewing machine!
If our lives were still to be dominated by travel, why not write about that?
I worked my way enthusiastically through the Ultimate Travel Writer’s Program and Kyle Wagner’s Travel Writing “Internship Program.” (Find out how you can get your own internship with former Denver Post travel editor Kyle Wagner here.)
“Start by writing local,” I kept hearing. Well, right now my “local” is Peru.
I wrote some travel stories for a local expat magazine, Living in Peru, and then pitched to their food editor suggesting a review of a gluten-free restaurant. Long story short, I am now writing weekly reviews of top-class restaurants offering gluten free options in Lima. I have compiled my own wish list and my comped dining is pre-arranged by the magazine. My husband dines with me as my photographer.
Living in Peru also regularly publishes my travel stories, which offers different benefits. For example, in Iceland we were offered three one-day tours, not comped but significantly discounted. We descended into an extinct volcano, walked behind a giant waterfall of water from a volcanic glacier, luxuriated in a thermal pool sipping champagne and so much more. I’ve got two stories published about our trip to Iceland so far.
There’s a rush of excitement every time I have an article published. This week I had some new excitement. I received my first free products to review: gluten-free baking products, a direct result of my restaurant reviews. I have also had two articles published, lunch at two restaurants for gluten-free reviews and my longest article so far, of 2000 words, accepted for publication. So this has been my best week yet.
I could not imagine our traveling just ceasing when we retire. So I am confident that I have found the ideal way to sustain our wonderful traveling lifestyle. My writing career is still in its infancy but my enthusiasm is bubbling over. Am I making a fortune? No. But the comps and discounts I am receiving more than compensate me for my efforts and, even more importantly, I have renewed enthusiasm in everything I do.
I think I have truly found my niche as a freelance writer and no matter where my husband’s work takes us it will always be a new “local” to write about.
I can’t believe my luck! But as my husband keeps reminding me, “You make your own luck.”
[Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can fund your travels and make an extra income with photography, travel writing, blogging, and more in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel. Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Three Fun Ways To Get Paid To Travel: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]