Friday, May 02, 2008

Guest Post Friday: Why I Travel Blog by Karen Bryan.

Welcome to Guest Post Friday: Today travel blogger Karen Byran writes about 'Why I Travel Blog'. Karen blogs at Europe a la Carte and Wanderlust.

Why I Travel Blog by Karen Bryan

I don't think of myself as a travel writer as such. I write travel content for
my UK based online travel business, Europe a la Carte. I started off writing online guides to less well known destinations in Europe, with my site focusing on authentic travel in Europe on a modest budget. My plan was to earn commission from accommodation suppliers featured in the guides and from adverts on the site. My destination guides are more of a resource than a traditional all encompassing guide

My guides are designed to make readers think that they'd like to visit that place and discover it for themselves. The beauty of an online guide is that you can insert links to more information, so if a reader is interested in a specific topic they can find our more by clicking on the link. Using several photos in a online guide is a good way to cut down on the flowery prose.

I started Europe a la Carte blog in October 2006 as a way of marketing my business. Writing a business blog is a balancing act I have to write useful, informative, entertaining content to satisfy readers but I must always bear in mind that it's a business blog and the blog has to increase the number of visitors to the site and turnover for the business to justify the time and effort spent researching and writing blog posts.

In March 2008 I started as editor of Wandalust a UK travel blog which is part of the Creative Weblogging network. I have to write 5 posts a week and the pay is lousy but I did decided to take the job in order to raise my profile. It's a change to able to write about the whole world versus Europe. Also I can write about any interesting topic without having to consider if it will be a good fit with my business.

I still have a part time "day" job as a social research interviewer. Although having a travel business sounds glamourous the majority of my time is spent sitting at the computer, I enjoy my "day" job as I get away from my desk and interact in real life with the interviewees as opposed to my virtual online contacts. I don't have time to travel as much as I'd like. I recently had to cancel a trip to Hamburg, Germany due to pressure of work.

My advice to aspiring travel writers is to always consider carefully what is it about your writing that is going to make readers read your work, plus what is the benefit to them? Travel writing is extremely competitive and I'm sure that only a tiny proportion of travel writers make a good living. Many travel readers will be willing to write for no payment - to get started or because they view travel writing as more of a hobby than a full time profession. However if you love travel writing and are diligent about producing quality, unique work you may strike it lucky.


Don't forget - if you have something to say about writing, you can send it through to Guest Post Friday.

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Karen Bryan said...


Thanks for publishing my guest post. There's some debate at the moment on my blog in travel writing which may be of interest:


Hi Karen, thanks for participating. And thanks for link to the travel writing debate over at europe a la carte.

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