An Interview with Great Escape Publishing’s attendee Maigii Sterling in Toronto, Canada
TWWTT: Before we get started, why don’t you tell us a little about yourself?
MS: I am from Barbados, and my career path has been varied. First I studied to be a R.N and did that for a few years. Then after I got married I went into the fashion business, owning and managing three ladies’ boutiques. Then I started a house-building business with my husband.
Now divorced, I was looking for a new path, and travel writing just jumped out at me after I saw the promo for the San Diego workshop advertised in International Living.
TWWTT: You recently have had some success getting your first piece published. Can you tell us a little bit more about that? How did you know where to start and what gave you the confidence to proceed?
MS: Tom from The Traveler first published my clip. I approached him by sending him a query letter with my article attached. I had the confidence because Jen Stevens convinced me at the workshop that my article was good enough to be published. She helped me to edit it and make it better. I also sent that article to International Living and the Toronto Sun, and it was published by them as well.
TWWTT: What specifically about the San Diego workshop do you think helped you so much? Why would you recommend it to others?
MS: I think the San Diego workshop was great! I had never taken a writing course before… never even thought of being a writer. But having done a great deal of traveling, it seemed to make sense. Jen is such a great teacher, the course was very informative, and the small group sessions we did at the end of the course were where I learned how to really make an article work. My fellow students offered really wonderful input.
TWWTT: What advice would you give to new students who haven’t yet had an article published?
MS: Get right down to it after the course. Do not procrastinate. Every day that passes takes you further away from your initial intent. My focus was entirely on getting my query letters out and getting published. You have to want it bad enough to make it happen. Finally- read every travel magazine that you can get your hands on!
[Editor’s Note: Learn more about opportunities to profit from your travels (and even from your own home) in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel.]