Pitching After You Return = Rookie Mistake


Pitching after you return from your travels is a common novice travel writing error.

Most beginning travel writers believe they’re supposed to pitch travel story ideas after they return from our destinations.

They think that after they’ve seen the place and selected some story ideas, they can go ahead and send out their queries.

But, this concept of pitching story ideas after travel is an amateur approach. Beginner travel writers tend to make this mistake. And it costs them—big time.

Professional travel writers pitch stories and get assignments before they travel. This requires creativity and imagination and a willingness to research your destinations before you travel.

Despite the apparent difficulty of preselling stories before you travel, it’s actually not that difficult. I’ve presold hundreds of stories before traveling to my destinations. In fact, that this is my standard operating procedure.

I wouldn’t dream of going on a trip without pitching numerous story ideas beforehand. There are enormous advantages to having several assignments lined up before you travel. Take a recent trip to the U.S.A. Midwest, for example: I rounded up four paying assignments worth $4,800 before I even arrived.

This income more than covered my trips to Denver, Colorado; Detroit, Michigan; and Cleveland, Ohio.

And, even better, parlaying your assignments with the local Destination Marketing Organizations gets you marvelous complimentary travel benefits like free accommodations, free meals, free tours, free tour guides, and often free ground transport. Having assignments before you travel also enables you to focus your travel schedule, and extend the length of your trips because you’re saving so much money.

There may be a few magazine editors who prefer you pitch them stories after you return from your travels. However, I’ve found that most of the two hundred editors I’ve worked with are very receptive to queries before I travel.

I would have missed out on several hundred bylines if I hadn’t presold my stories. The key is making sure you research your destination thoroughly so you have plenty of viable and interesting story ideas to pitch. Not all these stories will work out, but the vast majority will; enough to cover your expenses and make you a tidy profit after your articles have been published.

My mantra is, “Pitch before you travel.” You should always presell your travel stories before you take your trip. I’ve been doing this for years and it has opened up a whole new world to me.

My proactive approach has many financial and publishing benefits.

Here are the 6 reasons why you should presell your stories before you travel, and why this approach is so important for your travel writing success.



About Roy Stevenson 59 Articles
Freelance travel writer Roy Stevenson has had more than 1,000 articles published in 200+ regional, national, and international magazines, newspapers, trade journals, custom publications, specialty magazines, in-flights, on-boards, and online travel magazines. He's considered one of the most prolific travel writers in the U.S.A. His free weekly newsletter for aspiring travel writers is considered one of the most informative e-zines in the travel writing business. (Subscribe here: http://www.pitchtravelwrite.com/pitchtravelwrite-ezine.html) Roy has published seven eBooks on selling and marketing freelance travel articles. (http://www.pitchtravelwrite.com/digital-downloads.html) You can read Roy's full bio and see some samples of his work at his writer's website, www.Roy-Stevenson.com

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