Vacation With Your Writer-Radar On
I'm back. Of course, it was a working vacation. Are you green with envy wondering if my trip was comped by the Disney Company? Not exactly. Guessing which travel magazine bought a magazine article? None. Hoping I'd share everything I'd learned at the writer's conference held at Disney World? Sorry, no writer's conference.
What I did do was use my travel to get a new viewpoint on issues, meet some new people, and learn about some new issues. To do that I read local newspapers, talked to fellow travelers, and met the locals. I came home with a mound of dirty laundry and ideas for several stories/sources.
- Met a woman who lost over 100 pounds in under a year with no surgery or special diet, just exercise and moderate eating.
- Met a woman who is starting her own photography business.
- Learned about a mentor program for minorities in Georgia.
- Learned about a controversial campaign to make a small South Carolina town smoke-free.
- Learned about an unusual use for leftover pecan shells.
- Learned about Coca-Cola's habit of making different flavored "Coke" for different countries. Would you believe ginger, honey, and strawberry flavors?
- Experienced the wildly upbeat Disney attitude which must somehow tie in to a business article.
- Two sides of the same coin: I met people vacationing in Disney with babies(one was a 10 week old) and older couples horrified by the thought of bringing babies to Disney.
- Met a turtle who was rescued by Disney scientists that developed a taste for plastic while in the wild and had to have an operation as a result. He'll be returning to the wild--hopefully to eat more healthy meals.
- And we won't even mention the several ideas for personal essays I have from my travels.
While traveling, I usually carry a tiny notebook. In the front are tips such as where to sit on Splash Mountain and not get wet(a plus for me). I fill the back with ideas that occur to me and contact info for people I meet. Enjoy your time off but don't turn off your writer-radar. You might just run into a great story.
Now, since I took notes can I deduct the trip as a business expense? I wonder...
Jodi Webb is an organizer for WOW Blog Tours and, if you are a blogger, she's taking her last registrations for the Letters from Home Blogging Event on March 16. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org . Also, stop by her blog Words by Webb where she gives away books and writing advice.