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Travel Writing World

Arts & Culture Podcasts

With an emphasis on non-fiction travel books, books on place, nature writing, and travel literature, host Jeremy Bassetti talks with the world’s most celebrated writers about their work and about the business and craft of travel writing in this award-winning podcast. Past guests include travel writers like Paul Theroux, Pico Iyer, and Rolf Potts. The show also covers topics related to travel journalism and travel photography.

With an emphasis on non-fiction travel books, books on place, nature writing, and travel literature, host Jeremy Bassetti talks with the world’s most celebrated writers about their work and about the business and craft of travel writing in this award-winning podcast. Past guests include travel writers like Paul Theroux, Pico Iyer, and Rolf Potts. The show also covers topics related to travel journalism and travel photography.

Location:

United States

Description:

With an emphasis on non-fiction travel books, books on place, nature writing, and travel literature, host Jeremy Bassetti talks with the world’s most celebrated writers about their work and about the business and craft of travel writing in this award-winning podcast. Past guests include travel writers like Paul Theroux, Pico Iyer, and Rolf Potts. The show also covers topics related to travel journalism and travel photography.

Language:

English


Episodes

Sara Wheeler and Bill Colegrave

11/2/2022
As you’ll remember from the announcement in episode 94, we’re publishing four of Bill Colegrave’s interviews here on Travel Writing World. Today’s episode is Bill’s last interview, this one with Sara Wheeler. Now, most of you will be familiar with Sara for her books like Terra Incognita and The Magnetic North. And she wrote a biography of Apsley Cherry-Garrard, the author of the now-classic book, The Worst Journey in the World. Sara came on the podcast back in episode 83 to speak about...

Duration:00:28:25

Michelle Jana Chan and Bill Colegrave

10/17/2022
As you’ll remember from the announcement in episode 94, we’re publishing four of Bill Colegrave’s interviews here on Travel Writing World. This is his third interview, this one with Michelle Jana Chan. Michelle is an award-winning journalist and Travel Editor of Vanity Fair. She is the author of Song, a novel about a boy who leaves his impoverished family in rural China to seek his fortune. Purchase Song by Michelle Jana Chan If you decide to purchase your books from Amazon, please use our...

Duration:00:28:26

Alexander Frater and Bill Colegrave

10/3/2022
As you’ll remember from the announcement in episode 94, we’re publishing four of Bill Colegrave’s interviews here on Travel Writing World. This is his second interview, this one with the late Alexander Frater, the celebrated journalist and author who brought us works like Chasing the Monsoon: a Modern Pilgrimage Through India. Purchase Chasing the Monsoon by Alexander Frater If you decide to purchase your books from Amazon, please use our links on this page. If you use our links to make a...

Duration:00:24:29

Tony Wheeler and Bill Colegrave

9/19/2022
As discussed in the previous episode, we’re publishing a few of Bill Colegrave’s interviews here on Travel Writing World. Today is the first interview out of four, this one with Tony Wheeler who, along with his wife Maureen, founded Lonely Planet. Purchase Scraps of Wool by Bill Colegrave If you decide to purchase your books from Amazon, please use our links on this page. If you use our links to make a purchase, we will receive a few cents commission from Amazon at no additional cost to you....

Duration:00:33:12

Bill Colegrave and “Scraps of Wool”

9/5/2022
Bill Colegrave joins me today to talk about his book Scraps of Wool: A Journey Through the Golden Age of Travel Literature, which is a collection of passages from some of the world’s best-known works of travel literature. As you’ll hear in the interview, Bill recorded interviews with Tony Wheeler, the late Alexander Frater, Sara Wheeler, and Michelle Jana Chan a few years back. And Bill has kindly agreed to broadcast these interviews on Travel Writing World. So, for the next four episodes,...

Duration:00:32:59

Jennifer Barclay on Working in a Taverna in Greece and Being a Literary Agent

8/22/2022
Jennifer Barclay joins me on today's episode and we’re talking about her book The Taverna by the Sea: One Greek Island Summer (Bradt 2022). In this episode, we talk about Jennifer’s fascination with living on the Greek islands and her experience working in Greece. We also talk about her experiences as a literary agent and the process of selling travel books, including a bit about what publishers like to see. Purchase The Taverna by the Sea by Jennifer Barclay If you decide to purchase your...

Duration:00:37:24

Mary Novakovich on Croatia and “My Family and Other Enemies”

8/8/2022
Joining me today is Mary Novakovich. And we’re talking about her book My Family and Other Enemies: Life and Travels in Croatia's Hinterland (Bradt 2022). In this episode, we talk about a rustic region in Croatia called Lika, where her family is from, and its appeal. We also talk a bit about travel literature about Croatia and her experiences finding a publisher. Purchase My Family and Other Enemies by Mary Novakovich If you decide to purchase your books from Amazon, please use our links on...

Duration:00:25:09

Announcement: 30 Days in the Andes

7/25/2022
Hello, everyone. No interview today. But I do have some news. During the month of August, I’ll be traveling through the Andes mountains—from Santa Cruz, Bolivia overland to Cusco, Peru. Every day, from August 2 until August 31, 2022, I will send an email documenting my experiences to subscribers of a “pop-up” newsletter I’m calling 30 DAYS IN THE ANDES. Each email will have several photographs and maybe a note. While I'm away, the podcast will go on. I have interviews scheduled through...

Duration:00:01:53

Robert Kaplan and the Adriatic

7/11/2022
Joining me today is Robert Kaplan. And we’re talking about his newest book Adriatic: A Concert of Civilizations at the End of the Modern Age. As you know, Robert is the author of many books, including The Ends of the Earth, An Empire Wilderness, and the controversial Balkan Ghosts. In this episode, we talk about why the Adriatic is so interesting historically and culturally, how the Adriatic might see another renaissance, the idea of travel writing as a "vehicle," and more. Purchase Adriatic...

Duration:00:20:38

Benedict Allen, Explorer and The Quest for Adventure

6/27/2022
Benedict Allen is my guest today. He is the author of several books, including most recently Explorer: The Quest for Adventure and the Great Unknown. I ask him about his urge to explore, and about what I poorly articulate as his “old school” mode of traveling the world. We chat about about making bonds while traveling, about homecomings, and about family. Purchase Explorer by Benedict Allen If you live in the United States or the United Kingdom, we urge you to purchase your travel books from...

Duration:00:29:27

David Eimer on Burma and Travel Literature

6/13/2022
David Eimer is my guest today. He is the author of two books, The Emperor Far Away: Travels at the Edge of China and A Savage Dreamland: Journeys in Burma, the latter of which we talk about today. We start off this episode talking about Burma, its politics, and its peoples. But about halfway, we shift gears and chat about travel literature. Specifically, I ask David about travelogues, the role of history and context in the types of travel books he likes, and the future of the genre. I’ll say...

Duration:00:32:48

Shafik Meghji and “Crossed Off the Map: Travels in Bolivia”

5/30/2022
Joining me today is Shafik Meghji, and we’re talking about his new book Crossed Off The Map: Travels in Bolivia (Latin America Bureau 2022), which, as the name implies, treats the author’s many years of travels to and work in Bolivia, a country that is off the tourist radar. We talk about the indigenous languages spoken in the country, the history of exploitation of the country’s peoples and natural resources, and the tourist appeal of this overlooked country. Purchase Crossed Off the Map by...

Duration:00:30:19

Nicholas Jubber and “The Fairy Tellers”

5/16/2022
Joining me again today is Nicholas Jubber and we’re talking about his newest book The Fairy Tellers, which follows several fairy tales—their origins and evolutions—and explores the people who originally told them. As you’ll hear, fairy tales (like all stories) are rooted deeply in place. Of course we talk about some fairy tales themselves, but we also chat about how his experiences traveling, and using the notebooks of travels past, helped him write this book. Purchase The Fairy Tellers by...

Duration:00:39:20

Marcia DeSanctis and “A Hard Place to Leave”

5/2/2022
Joining me today is Marcia DeSanctis. And we’re talking about A Hard Place to Leave, a collection of stories that covers the last decade of her travel writing career. In addition to her book, we also talk about finding one’s writing voice, stories vs essays in the travel context, and the difficult task of putting together and pitching a collection of stories. Purchase A Hard Place to Leave by Marcia DeSanctis If you live in the United States or the United Kingdom, we urge you to purchase...

Duration:00:44:19

Rebecca Lowe and “The Slow Road to Tehran”

4/18/2022
Joining me today is Rebecca Lowe and we’re talking about The Slow Road to Tehran: A Revelatory Bike Ride Through Europe and the Middle East, her debut book. The book documents her 11,000-kilometer bicycle journey through Europe to Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Sudan, and finally to Iran. Don’t let the “Slow” in its title fool you. It is a fast-paced book, one that is also full of humor and insight. In addition to her book, we also talk about western media representations of the Middle...

Duration:00:40:49

The Worst Journey in the World with Sara Wheeler and Jonathan Chatwin

4/4/2022
Today I’m speaking with Sara Wheeler and Jonathan Chatwin about Apsley Cherry-Garrard’s The Worst Journey in the World, a book that is often cited as one of the most important travel books of the 20th century. This year marks the centenary of the book’s publication. My first guest today, Sara Wheeler, knows a thing or two about Antarctica and Apsley Cherry-Garrard. She spent some time on the continent, which she recounts in her 1996 book Terra Incognita, and she wrote a biography of Aspley...

Duration:00:33:04

Letter to a Stranger with Colleen Kinder

3/21/2022
Joining me today is Colleen Kinder. She’s the editor of the online literary journal Off Assignment and she has a new book out. The book is called Letter To A Stranger: Essays To The Ones Who Haunt Us (Algonquin 2022). It is a volume of essays from her journal’s flagship column “Letter to a Stranger.” It's a wonderful anthology packed with 65 essays, 65 letters from writers to strangers. We talk about the importance of voice in writing, writing prompts, travel media, the book form, and her...

Duration:00:47:39

The Best British Travel Writing of the 21st Century with Jess Vincent

3/7/2022
Joining me today is Jessica Vincent who, along with Monisha Rajesh, Simon Willmore, and Levison Wood, edited a volume of essays called The Best British Travel Writing of the 21st Century (Summersdale 2022). I ask Jess what makes the “best” travel writing, anyway? And we talk about how the pandemic reshaped our approach to travel and how it helped rekindle an interest in travel writing, despite our worst fears. Purchase The Best British Travel Writing of the 21st Century edited by Jessica...

Duration:00:27:40

Mad Travelers and Self-Publishing Essay Collections with Dave Seminara

2/21/2022
Joining me today is Dave Seminara. His newest book, Mad Travelers: A Tale of Wanderlust, Greed and the Quest to Reach the Ends of the Earth, tells the story of William Baekeland, an alleged con artist who offered to help extreme travelers reach some of the world’s most remote frontiers. Now this book is much more than an exposé on William; it offers insight into wanderlust and asks why some of us are so compelled to travel. We also talk about writing "footsteps" pieces and how Dave revised...

Duration:00:36:35

Live Event with Colin Thubron and Tharik Hussain at Stanfords, London on March 2, 2022

2/17/2022
This is just a quick announcement to say that in celebration of the 2022 Edward Stanford Travel Writing Awards, I’ll be in Stanfords’ London bookstore on March 2 speaking with Colin Thubron and Tharik Hussain about their award-nominated books and about genre of travel writing. We will be also be joined by special guest Monisha Rajesh. After the conversation, there will be an audience Q&A. Because of space limitations, the event is ticketed. Like all of Stanfords’ events, a ticket costs £5,...

Duration:00:01:30