How to Keep Your Travelblog Alive When You’re Not Traveling

The web is a graveyard of travelblogs, musings of gap year students, summer road trippers, one time round the worlders who thought it would be fun to share their stories while they were wandering. Travelers return home, cull their photos, flood the Flickr stream one last time and then… nothing. That’s fine for most, but what if you want to keep the travel enthusiasm going when your wallet is empty and your adventures limited to to the backyard? There’s plenty left to write about, even for the travelblogger at home. Here are a few suggestions that will keep your blog alive until the next time you’re off.

  1. Go local. It doesn’t matter where you are, people live there for a reason. Take your readers on a tour of your hometown as though they were your houseguests or you’d just arrived.
  2. Read and write. Many a traveler seeks solace in books. The travel journalism section at the book store or library is a great place to find adventure, even if it’s someone else’s. Don’t overlook the classics, after all, Huck Finn and Alice in Wonderland are travel stories too.
  3. Seek the exotic at home.We’re lucky in that if we go south just a bit we find Vietnamese communities, to the north,there are Korean and Indian neighborhoods… ethnic diversity is right out side our door. A few years back a friend and I attended the Scottish Highland Games, a mere 1/2 hour drive from here, and earlier this year, we attended the Cambodian New Year’s Festival, just two miles away.
  4. See it all as a trip. Even the shopping mall suburb has a story. Find the tiny community museums and learn about the place before the townhomes.
  5. Find the festivals and fairs. A quick search of my local paper’s festival calendar turns up a Norwegian Festival, a Native American cultural event, something called Viking Fest (horns and helmet, anyone?) and that’s just on the first page. Spring and summer are here; what’s on near you?
  6. Travel on your stomach. Think about how much the food you eat defines a place. Food and travel are excellent companions, why not try to write about your dinner. Seafood is an inseparable part of Seattle, as are the Chinese and Vietnamese restaurants in the International District. Food that’s distinctive to where you’re from can be as interesting as food from far away places.
  7. Plan your next trip.There are a few travelbloggers I read who published the exhaustive details of their planning phases before they even stepped foot out the door. I can think more than one blog where I found the reading at the planning more compelling then the travel writing.

Just about anytime you go from A to B, there’s the potential for adventure. Keep your eyes open. Remember the details you observed when you were in Buenas Aires or Stockholm or Hanoi and look for them at home. Think of writing about travel as writing not so much about the act of being in motion, but as writing about PLACE. Then, look at where you are. If you’re still a traveler at heart, you’ll have no trouble bringing that enthusiasm to continuing your blog, even if you’re standing on your own front porch.

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10 thoughts on “How to Keep Your Travelblog Alive When You’re Not Traveling

  1. All great tips, Pam! If more people blogged about their hometowns they way they do about their foreign travels, we’d have more authentic and reliable recommendations on the web.

  2. This is a fine post, Pam!

    Another tip that I’d add as part of tip #1 is to try and keep your digital camera in your bag / backpack / man-purse at all times. There are so many interesting and unexpected things that pop up when you’re not expecting them that can be fun to share with travel blog readers.

  3. I’ve got some things to add:

    Visit local attractions and meet interesting people: Just because it’s your hometown, doesn’t mean other people aren’t going to find the local community museum interesting. Take some time to explore the history of your community, take photos with local celebrities like that guy who’s always playing the guitar on the street corner, or the lady you buy bread from every weekend. These things and people always have interesting stories.

    If it’s interesting to you, it’s interesting to somebody else. Don’t ever forget that! Go with your gut instincts and blog about what you love, what you loathe and just about anything you find perplexing, funny or just plain weird.

  4. Extremely useful tips for travel bloggers. Blogging about my hometown was never on my radar. After I read the post, I’m suddenly recalling all those spots, picnics, school tours I was a part of. Thanks Pam.

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