Module 2 – Writing Styles

What are different writing styles?


News writing

 

Feature writing

 

Travel writing

Download the presentation “Documenting Your Travel Stories” here. Below is a summary of the presentation.

Slide 1: The big world and the big why

The world is too big to be just staying in one small place. Traveling gives you another perspective on life.

Slide 2: YOLO – How traveling brings catharsis

You only live once. We want to document that YOLO moment through:

  • Photos
  • Travel journal
  • Videos
  • Scrapbooks

They can bring catharsis to one’s inner self. Documenting a part of your life liberates that something you want everyone to know.

Slide 3: Telling your story

Not everyone is born an [insert job/career here]. But I tell you, everyone is a storyteller. Can you still remember the stories you told your parents yesterday? How about that gossip about your classroom crush? People are natural storytellers.

When you take that awesome photo, sure that you want to post it on your Facebook wall, Instagram feed, or WeChat moments. That act itself is storytelling. What photo you select and what caption you put is part of writing a narrative.

I aspire to become the best travel writer or journalist by making a story be heard. When I set up my blog (https://coolkidandy.wordpress.com), my purpose was just to document my Europe travel last year. But then I thought of it as my way to tell my audience outside China how is it to live here.

I aspire to become the best travel writer or journalist by making a story be heard. I want to know local accounts, folktales, or origin stories and write something about them that can enrich other people’s lives

What’s your goal, then? And why do you aim for that goal?

Choose your own niche.

Slide 4: Travel literature

Travel blogging is part of travel literature which comes in the form of guidebooks, documentaries, interviews, or fiction. Travel blogging is personalized; it acts like a diary or a journal. It can also be an album of photos or videos.

Slide 5: What inspires you?

What do you need when you start documenting your travel? Camera? Laptop? Great photography skills? You can have all gadgets, money, and time. But you need an inspiration. And that inspiration is connected to your goal.

What is your goal? And why do you aim for that goal? When you know your goal, you’re motivated.

No gadgets? No money? No time? You’ll be highly resourceful when you know your motivation and inspiration.

Slide 6: Setting up your own space

There’s a lot of options to personalize your own space where you publish your travel blogs.

WordPress – free and no VPN required in China (.com and .org are both free but .org gives more personalization options). Blogger is free. WeChat (subscription accounts or Moments)

Slide 7: Welcoming everyone to your own space

Is everybody welcome to your own space? Who’s your audience? If you want to tell something, do you want your teachers or parents know it? Knowing your audience can help you control what kind of content you will create, or to what extent you should reveal your personal life.

When you know your audience, it will be easier for you to produce content. It will be easier for them to relate and understand why are you producing that content.

When you open your space to everyone, you also open a lot of opportunities.

  • Experience careers at a young age
  • Engage and network with people who have the same passion
  • Explore other worlds created by budding bloggers like you

Slide 8: Writing your content

How to write your content? Summarizing Nomadic Matt’s article on the ways to improve travel writing, and becoming a successful blogger, it is important to:

  • Read more and more
  • Do it for love. Again, if you feel like you’re not born a writer, remember that you can tell your stories in a lot of different ways.
  • Don’t get stressed if your first draft is unimpressive
  • Review your post. Have another set of eyes to check. Practice self-editing.

Slide 9: Pitfalls of travel blogging

What are the roadblocks in telling your story?

  • Narcissistic approach – it’s a highly variable topic because we have different definitions of what and why something should be posted on our Facebook walls, Twitter timeline, Instagram feed, and WeChat moments. Define your purpose.
  • Falling on deaf ears – Is everything that you post falling on deaf ears? Don’t be discouraged. Define who your audience is and reach out to them.
  • Little to no content – It is difficult to put up a blog and make everything consistent. But when you get back to your inspiration and motivation, content will flow easier. It will help to make a schedule of what you want to write and when you want to publish it. Also, read more travel blogs but don’t plagiarize.
  • Too much grammatical errors in your journals, photos are uninteresting – While glaring errors can impede the experience of your audience, remember that they want to hear/know your story. Practice makes perfect.