Wednesday, November 7, 2018

10 Places Writers Should Go

Writers are explorers.
We go places both physical and psychological. And we take readers along for the ride! Readers depend on authors to transport them to foreign countries, fictional towns, other worlds, back in time or into the future, and even just down the street. So we need to create settings that are as real as possible.

For my IWSG post this month, I challenge writers to go to these ten places, or as many as possible:
  1. Visit another country
  2. Take a trip to a different state/climate
  3. Volunteer at a soup kitchen or other opportunity
  4. Offer to speak at a school
  5. Spend the night in a strange place out of your comfort zone ==> if you live in the city, go to the country and vice versa. Never been camping? Try it.
  6. Try a new mode of transportation
  7. Explore an antique store, or grandma's attic
  8. Dare to try something exciting that you wouldn't normally do--skydiving, spelunking, scuba diving
  9. You can go online to experience some of the above when travel isn't feasible and immerse yourself in facts and photos
  10. Put yourself in someone else's shoes! This is the best thing to do when writing a character, but also in life.

The challenge is to broaden your perspective. The more knowledge you gain, the richer the experience, the deeper your characters, and the better your story will be. Have you already crossed a few of these off? I'd love to hear about it!

I also have a very well-traveled friend for my SHOUT OUT OF THE WEEK...

Rhonda lives in New Zealand, and I hope to visit her some day. She and her family recently returned home after a 51 day adventure to visit relatives in the US, and then sailed back from LA to Auckland. After spending about a month at home, they leave for 9 weeks to South America. And she documents her journeys with amazing photographs and stories. You really need to check them out! She's truly an inspiration for going out to see the world.

More about Rhonda--
Expat Rhonda Albom takes you on a vicarious adventure as she captures the essence of travel through photography, stories, tips, and humour. Along with her husband and her two teenage daughters, they have collectively visited 54 countries on six continents.

Rhonda is the owner, primary author, and chief travel photographer at the award-winning expat/travel blog  Her background includes the journalism school at the University of Missouri, a BS from the University of Illinois,  and an MBA from Loyola University Chicago. Rhonda homeschooled her girls, is a crew member of a women’s yacht racing team, and she leads a Girl Guiding Pippins group (ages 5-6). Rhonda is currently editing her first creative non-fiction book, due out in 2018.

So, where would you suggest a writer go? And do you know Rhonda? You should!
Happy November!


M.J. Fifield said...

I was just telling my significant other that I needed to visit Wales to do research for a WIP. And also just because.

That's an excellent challenge you've laid out here. I'll certainly endeavor to cross off some of these.

Hello, Rhonda! I am in awe of your travels!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I've known Rhonda for a long time! I ever go to New Zealand I want her as my guide.
I've done everything on that list except speak at a school. That one may never be crossed off.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Now that the weather is cooling off here, I hope to get out more - get back to the beach and take some day trips to interesting places. :)

Carrie-Anne said...

I wish I had the money to travel to all the places I write about! Someday, I want to make this dream a reality.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I got to do indoor skydiving and wow was that fun!

Melissa said...

I have very little interest in traveling overseas, but I do want to travel the US eventually. For some of these items, I'll have to boot my not-so-baby birds out of the nest first. LOL Soon, soon!

Chrys Fey said...

I would love to do a lot of those traveling things, but alas I can' and psychical limitations. Except, I do dream of going to Ireland.

Debra Renée Byrd said...

I definitely think writers should travel as much as they can. I haven't been to Europe yet, but now that I have a passport, that's my goal!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Rhonda rocks!
I would challenge a writer go as far as they can - whether it's down the street to a new corner, or a country they've never considered. I never planned to go to Poland or Hungary, but I went to those countries because my daughter went to compete in them, and I saw really cool things, but mostly just soaked in different experiences in different cultures that I would never have seen otherwise.

Rhonda Albom said...

Thanks for the shout out Tara. I love your list and have done. I have done all but speak at a school.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I have done a few of those. I do want to do a train trip. I have never ridden on a train!
Visit a retirement home. A dog shelter. A rodeo. There is so much to do and see.

Diane Burton said...

I'd love to take a train trip through the Rockies or the Canadian Maritimes. I've talked to a class about writing. When our son lived in Arizona (a far cry from Michigan), we visited. I used some of my experiences there in my mystery series. You offer a lot of great suggestions. Thanks.

Juneta key said...

Great post. Happy IWSG Day.

Patricia Lynne aka Patricia Josephine said...

I enjoy going to places and seeing the sites and try to do it on the weekends in the summer. Although, hubby and I are now running out of day trips to take.

Elizabeth Mueller said...

In other words: get those cobwebs off you! Haha! x)

If I had more money, I'd happily do those that require the funding! But yes, you are right--experience makes for a richer writing environment. Love it!


Terra said...

I like your list; I traveled to many places in my twenties including Petra in Jordan, Jericho for camel races, Istanbul (attended my junior year in college there), lived on the island of Nevis, etc. Now I am editing my current book and am retired from my career as librarian. Your featured writer is sure having lots of travel adventures. This is my hello from a Terra (close to Tara).

S.A. Larsenッ said...

I love this list. I've done most of them, except for maybe #8 and #1; I'm a Mainer, so going to Canada really doesn't count for #1. But we are going to Italy next summer for my youngest to play soccer. :) No, I don't know Rhonda, but she sure sounds like an amazing person! Her travels are so exciting. Best of luck to her.

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