Thanks for your question! Sounds like you have a great adventure ahead
of you, with lots of potential for travel-writing gold. Here?s some
general advice to get you started.
Typically, the best approach for selling travel articles is to first
submit a query, or proposal, to the editor of your target publication.
Simply run your -idea by the editor, and if they bite, you can
undertake the actual writing. Essentially, you?re selling an unwritten
A query letter only needs to be a couple of paragraphs long, and
should contain the following:
- Specific topic or angle ? e.g. ?Touring France by bicycle on $5 a
day,? ?Essential countryside cuisine? or ?Six essential French phrases
for when your bike breaks down? :) rather than the very broad "cycling
- A brief outline of what your article will include and what format it
will take (e.g. point-form tips, travelogue, interview)
- Proposed word count ? a ballpark estimate usually suffices; to give
you some point of reference, feature articles generally run in the
- Your publishing credits/clippings, if applicable, or a
self-promoting blurb explaining why you?re the best person to write
the story (e.g., you?ve travelled six European countries by bicycle in
as many years)
- Delivery date ? when you can realistically deliver your article
Another selling point is photos ? if you?re a reasonably good
photographer, propose a few striking shots to accompany your article.
Editors usually prefer some guarantee that you can actually write ?
this can take the form of a list of publishing credits or copies of
published work. However, most editors are also understanding enough to
recognize that everyone starts somewhere ? so if you?re just beginning
your writing career, don?t despair. In this case you might consider
submitting your completed travel article, to give the editor some
evidence on which to make a decision.
This is where guidelines come in. Most publications offer some sort of
writers? guidelines for prospective scribes. That?s where you?ll learn
things like how they prefer to receive queries (phone, email, etc), or
if they?d rather you simply submit a finished article "on spec" (for
consideration). You?ll also get some indication of the tone and tastes
of the magazine. It?s never a bad idea to obtain and read copies of
your target publications so you don?t waste your time and theirs
sending them material that just doesn?t fit. You?ll usually find
guidelines on a publication?s website or in publications like Writer?s
Market, a US-based publication that?s updated yearly and contains many
international markets. If you still can?t find a publication's
guidelines, request them by mail or phone (including a self-addressed
stamped envelope in the former case).
Here are a couple of travel writing markets to get you started:
European Visits ? the online magazine of European travel
< http://www.eurodata.com/ >
< http://www.wanderlust.co.uk/ >
You may also want to think beyond ?travel? publications for your piece
and consider other markets that might find your piece relevant, e.g.
general interest or cycling magazines. Here?s an example of the
Bike Reader ? A Rider?s Digest
< http://www.bikereader.com/BikeReader/BikeReader.html >
You might also wish to get in touch with the editor of your local
newspaper?s travel section and pitch your idea.
Here are some links which you may find useful:
10 Terrific Travel Writing Tips
< http://www.journeywoman.com/traveltales/topten.html >
Guideline Gleanings - Tips from Editors to Make Your Articles Better
< http://main.travelwriters.com/writers/writing_tips/index.asp >
Writing for UK Travel Magazines
< http://www.writing-world.com/international/UKtravel.shtml >
I used the following search strings to find your answer:
uk travel writing markets
uk travel publications
get started travel writing
uk cycling magazines
uk cycling publications
Please let me know if I can be of further assistance. All the best,
and happy cycling!