Blog Words : Insider Secrets | 23 December

Paul Theroux's 10 tips for aspiring travel writers

Travel writing legend Paul Theroux lays down the law on becoming a better travel writer

1. Leave your camera at home

Be in the moment. When you take photos you're not looking close enough.

2. Go far away

And go to places that people tell you not to go to.

3. Disconnect from your old world

Avoid the internet. And your family.

4. Don’t think you’re interesting

It’s other people who are interesting.

5. Never carry anything that needs a battery

They always need charging. And they're a distraction anyway.

6. Observe intently

Chances are, you won't be coming back.

7. Be friendly and receptive

Having an attitude when you travel won't get you anywhere.

8. Keep a small notebook handy

And make notes immediately. You'll be amazed by how quickly you'll forget things.

9. Dialogue is essential

Make your work full of human conversations. The best books are about human encounters

10. Make sure you capture the sounds, the smell, the feel of a place

That will be much more interesting than any museum you may visit.