Travel Journals

 

 

Challenging is the best way to describe writing while traveling. Routines are disrupted, changing time zones can be wicked hard physically, and with ADHD the distraction of new places can make it very difficult to focus on writing. If you are traveling with your family, kids, or even with other adults it can be difficult for them understand why you need to have time alone to write. Negotiation is critical for having an enjoyable trip and getting the creative time you need. I am grateful that my family understands that I need to take time out to write, and I am careful to not let it keep me from enjoying the moment.

Taking time to get out of your head to see and experience the world around you provides raw material for writing. Travel brings with it the opportunity to see new things, taste new foods, experience new cultures, and to meet new people. Take advantage of these experiences and collect your impressions in a travel journal, notebook, or other writing tool of your choice. I prefer paper for travel as I never have to worry about not being able to record my thoughts because of a lack of electricity. Small notebooks are great for this, and I am very partial to 5×8 hardcover sketch books. These kinds of books become a permanent record of my travels, fit in my flat filing system that I talked about here, and are unobtrusive. Although I adore fountain pens, I only carry cheap ball points while traveling, they don’t  leak and are easy to replace if lost or broken.

Embrace the chaos that travel brings. Record your thoughts, feelings, and impressions. Capture bits of overheard dialogue and make character sketches. Use what you experience to enrich your writing.  In the past I have relied on a small point and shoot camera to record pictures as resources for my writing, this trip I am using Evernote to take pictures and write extensive captions so that I remember where and why I took the photo. No matter what you are writing having images to remember your experiences is invaluable. If you are Blogger this is a fantastic way to collect images for future posts as well as generating ideas for your blog. If you write fiction it is great to use images as part of your character and location sketches.

Enjoy your trip. Make memories. Record your life. Use it all.

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  1. Pingback: Research for Writers: Ten Tips for Location Research | Writing While Distracted

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