October 2021

by Jeremy Bassetti

Fall is officially here. Though, apart from the availability of pumpkin-spice-everything, you wouldn’t know it in Central Florida. Humidity remains high and the temps continue to feel like the low 90s°F/32°C. The green in my wild backyard will likely stay green until around February, when a cold front cold enough to blast all the oak leaves to the ground will inevitably sweep across Florida and create the space for new growth.

Yet, the number of COVID-19 cases seem to be going in the right direction. At least in Florida and in the United States. One hopes that the trend will continue and, thanks to the ongoing vaccination efforts, the world will finally be able to live a bit more confidently.

Last month we published

A review of François Prost’s photobook Gentlemen’s Club (Review) on my website
Four “postcards” from Soportujar, Rome, Puerto Plata, and Orlando (Postcards Newsletter) on my website
A podcast with Colin Thubron about his book The Amur River on Travel Writing World
A podcast with Robert Martineau about his book Waypoints on Travel Writing World
An author profile of Nick Hunt on Travel Writing World
A book excerpt of Ken Haigh’s book On Foot to Canterbury on Travel Writing World
A review of Colin Thubron’s book The Amur River on Travel Writing World

🧑‍🎓 I’ll be giving a short talk on travel writing subgenres for the free Self-Publishing Advice Conference in late October.

🗳 Cast your vote for the National Geographic Traveller Reader Awards 2021.

🌿 The 2021 Wainwright winners were announced.

🏔 The 2021 Banff Mountain Book Competition category finalists have been announced.

🍃 The Nan Shepherd Prize for underrepresented voices in nature writing is open until Oct 6.

🥈 Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-Fiction 2021 longlist is announced.

🇬🇧 The British Academy Book Prize announces its 2021 shortlist.

🏆 The NATJA awards is open through Oct 31.

🥇 The British Travel Media Awards 2021 finalists have been announced.

🇬🇧 The Bookseller reports that Summersdale will publish The Best British Travel Writing of the 21st Century.

🌎 The Bookseller also reports that Lonely Planet releases updated guides as travel resumes.

🇷🇺 Ben Ehrenreich has reviewed Thubron’s The Amur River for the NYT. William Dalrymple reviewed it for The Telegraph. Sara Wheeler did the same for The Spectator. And Jen Rose Smith did the same for the Washington Post.

🗺 Stanford’s book of the month is Colin Thubron’s The Amur River.

🇬🇧 The BBC broadcasts an excerpt of The Amur River, read by Robert Powell.

🇨🇴 Wade Davis speaks with Don George in a free online event about Magdalena: River of Dreams on Nov 4.

🎧 I speak with Joanna Penn about travel writing on her The Creative Penn Podcast.

📸 Bradt will publish Nori Jemil’s The Travel Photographer’s Way: Practical steps to taking unforgettable travel photos on Oct 8.

👂 Jo Frances Penn speaks with Karen Espley about Antarctica and gives a solo show about London on her Books and Travel Podcast.

🎧 The Slightly Foxed Podcast discusses Sybille Bedford’s appetite for life.

📝 William Dalrymple does a podcast interview about his note-taking process.

💰 The School of Literature and Languages at Surrey has two fully-funded studentships to award in the research area of travel writing.

🌎 For NatGeo, Tim Hannigan explains how travel writing changes in the 21st century.

🗣 Tim will also be giving some talks about his newest book, The Travel Writing Tribe.

✍️ Jonathan Chatwin reviews Travel Writing Tribe: Journeys in Search of a Genre by Tim Hannigan for the Asian Review of Books.

📕 An interview with Rick Steves for The New Yorker.

🇨🇦 Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Nonfiction finalists have been announced.

👁 Michael Kerr highlights some talks related to travel and place at the upcoming Cheltenham Festival.

🥾 A listicle of eight memoirs of women hiking in the wilderness.

🚂 Monisha Rajesh has a beautiful new book available called Epic Train Journeys.

🌈 A case for D.H. Lawrence as a father of modern travel writing.

✍️ Rolf Potts profiles Craig Mod. He also gives five thoughts on giving essays and stories narrative “engines.”

🕵️‍♂️ David Farley writes about the CIA spy who reinvented the travel guide.

🇩🇪 Rory Maclean is teaching a two-day workshop called “Telling Tales: The Art of Creating Stories” in Berline on Oct. 16 and 17th.

🧑‍🎓 Lottie Gross teaches a 4-week course on breaking into travel journalism.

🌻 Anita Sethi gives a nature writing workshop on Oct 10.

👨‍🏫 Don George is also teaching an online class: Ten Secrets of Successful Travel Stories on Oct 2.

🍀 How a racist taunt prompted Anita Sethi to reclaim Britain’s countryside.

🇮🇳 Arman Khan profiles Rajat Ubhaykar about his experiences writing Truck de India!.

🚶‍♀️Why walking helps us think?

📚 Why Are Ebooks So Terrible? by Ian Bogost for The Atlantic.

💡 Ryan Holliday writes about being a productive creative.

🥃 Derek Thompson writes that social media Is attention alcohol for The Atlantic.

📰 Casey Newton speaks about his newsletter on Substack and offers some helpful insight on his experience.

🖕 FYPM is a website and app that allows freelancers to note if/when companies don’t pay. 

Books received

🏞 Glenn, Joshua. The Adventurer’s Glossary. McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2021.
🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Haigh, Ken. On Foot to Canterbury: A Son’s Pilgrimage. University of Alberta Press, 2021.
✉️ Kinder, Colleen. Letter to a Stranger. Algonquin, 2021/2022.
🇱🇰 Sally, Razeen. Return to Sri Lanka: Travels in a Paradoxical Island. Juggernaut, 2019.
🇺🇸 Wilson, Jason. The Best American Travel Writing 2021. Mariner, 2021.
🇸🇰 Wilson, Sarah. I Am a Brave Bridge: An American Girl’s Hilarious and Heartbreaking Year in the Fledgling Republic of Slovakia. Thornbush, 2021.

Back matter

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