Why Writers Should Travel

(with other writers)

Experience! Companionship! Encouragement!

This is on my mind. I am traveling to Ireland this summer with a group of writers to study writers and write. Why am I going? What do I hope to accomplish?

My husband and I are lucky to own a travel agency that allows us to plan trips for all types of groups. This one is my group. I didn’t want to sit on the sidelines while I watched others travel, write, photograph and paint. I have always dreamed of attending a writer’s workshop. My dad used to attend the Key West Writer’s Workshop when I was younger. Like him, I wanted total immersion. Writing with writers, reading each other’s work and growing. This is my dream.

I don’t want to travel to become a travel writer, but to travel for inspiration from other writers and scholars. This trip to Ireland in July is planned with a group of creative writers, literary enthusiasts and Ireland celebrants to soak in the countryside learn of Irish writers and create. The idea is to carve out time for writing and for reviewing our work as a group.

Why? Writers need other writers.

I am looking forward to this trip, because I write every day. I often want to share what I have written for validation and analysis. I am studying creative writing, but I don’t feel close to publishing a book of poetry. What better way to ensure a platform for that writing.

As I said yesterday, workshop is a verb. It is a group of supportive people, with mutual goals, that is to help each other succeed and who listen to or read your work and respond with helpful comments.

To workshop means to offer specific feedback, not just “I like it” or “It needs work”.

Writers need experience. They need to be exposed to sensory delights and describe those things. I am anxious to stand on an Irish cliff, look out over the ocean, and describe the wind blowing on my face.

I am anxious to walk the streets of Dublin and hear James Joyce’s footsteps.

I am giddy to spend time with published authors and listen to how they did it.

I want to write something spectacularly beautiful while there.

I want to encourage my friends to write their best work or to merely encourage a daily habit.

I want to call myself an author.

I want to sit in an Irish pub, swap stories with my mates and laugh, laugh, laugh.

This year, we are going to Ireland to inspire and be inspired. The tour bus will take us all over the Irish countryside and to literary destinations chosen specifically for us. We will channel James Joyce and CS Lewis. We will push each to new levels of creativity.

Where shall we go next year?

Susan

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