Writing a memoir involves reflecting on your personal travel experiences and how those experiences changed or shaped your life. It took many years for me to begin writing my adventure travel memoir, AMAZON HITCHHIKER: A Woman’s Adventures from Canada to Brazil. The COVID lockdown offered me the perfect opportunity. I was stuck at home alone, which left me free to write all day long. (There are affiliate links here. I get a small commission if you purchase through them at no extra cost to you)
1. How do you accurately remember the past?
First, dig out your old journals. It is imperative to keep a journal when traveling. The tiny details that make an exciting read can be too easily forgotten if not recorded as they actually happen. In addition to your own journals, search for old letters you may have sent home. My thoughtful mother saved all of my letters.
2. Contact the people you met traveling.
Ask them for their memories, too. Undoubtedly they will remember amusing moments that you may have forgotten. By connecting with your travel mates, you will also make them aware that you are writing a book. If they have any objections to being mentioned in your book, this is the time to find out. Get permissions in writing.
3. Focus your book's theme.
Your point of view should be unique. Consider why you are writing this travel memoir. A travel memoir is not a guidebook. It reflects and recollects your past journeys and how they transformed you. Be truthful. Sharing your embarrassing globetrotting blunders will make your book authentic and much more interesting for the reader.
4. The best stories paint vivid pictures through well-chosen words.
Colorful descriptions using metaphors or the occasional simile transform vague recollections into memorable engrossing moments. Using dialogue will help you to engage your reader. You want your reader to feel like they are experiencing what you lived so use your active voice. Adjectives can add color, but the overuse of adjectives, adverbs, or even similes tend to encumber a story. If you are unsure how to accomplish what you want in your writing, read and study some of the successful travel memoirs you admire and love.
5. Be brave. Be honest. Reveal a little piece of your soul.
I started writing my travel memoir AMAZON HITCHHIKER for my son. To my surprise, it became a #1 new-release bestseller on Amazon with many favorable reviews and a 5-star rating. It has quickly become a popular book that appeals to travelers of all ages; as well as those who simply dream of adventure from their cozy armchair.
Interview by Katelyn Silva with Alycin Hayes for the "1 Minute Writing Tip Podcast"
on how to write and "How Life Inspires Adventures".
Here are the links to listen or watch this interview:
Podcast Platforms: https://1minutewritingtip.buzzsprout.com/1914765/11521784
Alycin Hayes has spent much of her life adventuring all over the world. If you enjoy her blog you will also
want to read her books: Amazon Hitchhiker: A Woman’s Adventures from Canada to Brazil and her award-winning children's book Milo and the Mustang
has spent her life adventuring all over the world. If you enjoy the stories and travel writing tips in this blog, you will also love her books: Amazon Hitchhiker:A Woman’s Adventures from Canada to Brazil and her award-winning children's book Milo and the Mustang.