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Dear Reader,

The Ultimate Travel Writer’s Workshop in Portland, OR started today at 8:00 a.m. but I’m still here in Virginia.

I couldn’t attend this year for medical reasons and I have to admit… now that everyone’s there and I’m here, I’m suffering from a little separation anxiety.

You see, I always make new friends at these events. And unlike lots of “work” conferences filled with stuffed shirts and put-you-to-sleep speakers — ours are always packed with lively, well-traveled folks and great fun.

Truth is, — and I know you already know this — it’s a certain type of person that’s attracted to the lifestyle of a travel writer. And when all those like minds come together in the same room for one of these workshops, it makes for enjoyable cocktail receptions… interesting chit chat over dinner… an opportunity to make life-long friends… and most definitely a motivating environment where we can encourage each other to write more and try new things.

(By the way, did I tell you that I invited five previous workshop attendees to my wedding in Paris this past May and another one to our reception in Delaware the week after? When I say life-long friends, I mean it. It’s hard not to forge friendships at these events – especially during the small break-out groups and cocktail parties — and I’ll miss that this year.)

Anyway, lucky for me — and for you too if you’re missing this year’s event — we’re recording it. So at least we’ll have an opportunity to hear the new presentations from guest speakers like Lindsay Roylance and Sharon Miller.

And when we put together the audio recording package, it’ll come with everything the attendees get in Portland too — including everything they pick up at the big Publication Expo on Saturday (where more than a dozen publications are being featured), plus all the presenters’ PowerPoint slides and handouts as well.  We do this at our workshops each year and bundle it all together into our Workshop at Home package.

I’ll let Jennifer Stevens tell you about it tomorrow. I’ve asked her to write daily reports back to us about what’s going on and anything new she picks up from our guest speakers.

Until then… have a great weekend. And don’t worry about me. I’ll be here to push the send button when I get Jen’s report.

— Lori
Lori Allen
Director, Great Escape Publishing

[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.]

PRACTICAL WRITING PROMPT OF THE WEEK: Your Story… Your Article.

Most people at our live workshops like to write first-person travel essays about an experience they had on a recent trip.  And that’s fine. We have several resources in our archives to help you do that, including:

** Day 2 of last year’s Denver workshop dispatch: “I” Can Kill Your Travel-Writing Dreams

** How to Write a Real Travel “Story”

So, if you’re home this weekend (and not in Portland) I challenge you to read the articles posted at those links and think about a travel experience you had recently. I suggest you first get it all on paper and then use the tips above to turn your draft into a publishable piece.

Then, when you’re finished, here’s some advice on writing query letters to go with your article: http://www.thetravelwriterslife.com/?p=279

READER FEEDBACK: They want an article with photos plus content for a blog!

“In one of your emails, a few months ago, you gave the name of 40+ Travel and Leisure, an online publication out of England.  I emailed them, told them what I do for a living and the many spots on the globe that I visit. Well, they have just accepted an article/photos and have asked if I would continue to contribute via a blog as I move around.
“Thank you!” — Karen Johnson

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