I went to Florida to prepare a travel guide. I’m still working on it, after the preparatory phase , then the journey , there is the long writing period . Fortunately, I do not write the entire book alone, it is an update of an existing guide, a collective work on which also worked other editors, publishing secretaries and various speakers of The book chain, as they say in the jargon … After the guide on Boston and New England, I renew this experience in the fabulous world of the tourist guide. My know-how in this field is still beginning,
1 – I visit as much as possible according to my pre-established plan, but I let myself be surprised by unsuspected places at the start. I arrived on the spot with my beautiful program, smooth and well prepared in advance – I spent many days to learn about the destination, to talk to contacts, to look for famous tips (tote section ). The myth of the reporter who arrives like a flower with his camera slung over his shoulder and ready to pace the streets with his nose in the air (* alert cliché voyager *) : it is false, at least, it is not what I .. . I am rather a mini-inspector in flip-flops and shorts, who quadrille the neighborhood, do almost all the museums met on my route, listen to what I am told, and go where I am advised, Unless it’s really at the other end of the city – I put myself in the reader’s place of the guide: do I really want to make 30 terminals for the best guacamole of the land or the museum of the ramp? Not necessarily.
2 – I go to the restaurant alone, and I remain worthy when I am told: you expect someone? No, honey, it’s just me and me. The travel guide writer is a lonely being. But that does not stop me from sitting in the bar, and ordering a mojito, or the cocktail of the day all by myself – a book and notebook nearby to keep me company. I thought it would take me to be alone, but I found it rather … tasty. Besides the fact that I could put the same song 25 times in a row in the car, and not put the air conditioning but lower all the windows, I lived at my own pace , and I visited as I liked, Resto to off-set schedules – it was delightfully selfish.
3 – I take it as a job (otherwise the editor will not be happy) but I’m glad to come back all tanned. When I said to my friends that I was going to Florida to prepare a tour guide, I was answered most often: nice paid vacation! The other providers for whom I worked at the same time did not believe me when I said that I will be difficult to reach for a fortnight. In Florida early April … to work?
Promise, it’s work! Certainly, at the end of the day, after all the visits, I spent time by the pool, it was my well-deserved break during which … I was fining the preparation of the next day. Intense, but jubilant.
4 – What do I do, and especially what do I say, when a visit is really not interesting? (1) there is nothing objectively wrong – though … (2) all tastes are allowed, and I do not write that for my similar thirty years and urban, I also think of what my little sister might like (My children), my big sister and three children (beaches and family stuff), my mother (fan of fossils and grandiose landscapes) or my father (adept of old trades, museums on everything and nothing). It takes for everybody.
But it is true that sometimes I sometimes visit things that do not get me excited at all. So when I find myself embarking on a really boring visit – it’s often related to animals, Or when the guide is too passionate about his subject – I would like to shorten it, but often these are guided tours framed, so I have to stay to the end. In this case, I note ALL, I take pictures that I would never use – it passes the time – and I try to type the discussion to anyone (it is very easy in the United States ): What did you do before? What do you do next? And hop, I profit my time by gleaning information neither seen nor known. I take pictures that I would never use – it’s time – and I try to type the discussion with anyone (it’s very easy in the United States): what did you do before? What do you do next? And hop, I profit my time by gleaning information neither seen nor known. I take pictures that I would never use – it’s time – and I try to type the discussion with anyone (it’s very easy in the United States): what did you do before? What do you do next? And hop, I profit my time by gleaning information neither seen nor known.
5 – I banish certain words, as “picturesque”. I take notes all along the journey, I write my impressions, details, and tips on how to get there at best, in order to facilitate the reader’s task when he reads the guide. When I took more than twenty minutes to find the church Machin Truc of the Divine Holiness, it is probably that it is not easy to find for nobody, and yet it will be a pity to miss, So I make a little schema to find myself there.
When it arrives the time of the writing , facing my desk and my computer, I often do not have much room to blow me out, it is very formatted, I have to go into the box. How to be concise , direct and informative, All while making you want to go – this is the most important, right? I have a list of words banned, because they are really too travel guides, and so, we do not even know what it means: picturesque is the best example, but I also avoid charming – which implies Old and ugly, or coquettish in the same genre