I have spent my entire life practically chained to south jersey. I was born here, I grew up here, and when college gave me the opportunity to escape, I ended up staying here. At 20 years old, I haven’t visited even half of the 50 states and I left the country once for just about 2 hours. While Laredo, Mexico was a dirty, humid town were street vendors almost threatened us into buying worthless products, those two hours gave me a taste of life outside of the US. I get restless here in South Jersey. I often evaluate my funds and ponder the consequences of disappearing down the coast for a few days. Don’t get me wrong, South Jersey is a pretty great place (at least for the natives) but I can’t stay here. I need to “get the hell outta dodge”. For that reason, I have entertained the idea of becoming a Travel Writer. I have started following a travel writer named Carl Parkes on Twitter. Parkes also has a blog that I skimmed through to see what life as a travel writer might entail. I was a little disappointed by his blog but I have not been dissuaded from the idea of this profession.
My disappointment is derived from the fact that Parkes doesn’t have much of his own work on his blog. I was expecting to find link after link to all of these grand places and stories about the wild adventures he’s had throughout the years. But most of his posts are pictures from other people and humorous anecdotes that other people have written. It was entertaining to look through, certainly but not exactly what I was expecting for someone who claims in their bio to have 15 years of travel writing experience.
Parkes’ interests are obvious after reviewing who he follows on twitter. The man is obsessed with Traveling. Of the 236 accounts that he follows, approximately 41 are accounts just for travel sites such as the twitter for American Airlines and AirTreks. He’s also crazy about San Francisco and the news which is evident from the 62 accounts regarding the news and SF that he follows (the majority of which are accounts for News in San Francisco) From his blog bio, I learned that he is from San Fran and did all of his travel writing throughout Asia. So of course, many of the accounts he follows are Asia related. And for almost every account that was for a person (unlike “CBSNews” or “msnbc_travel”) the person’s bio claimed that he or she was some sort of writer be it a columnist, journalist, travel writer, editorial supervisor, etc. (And most of them worked in or around the SF area with many of them working for The San Francisco Chronicle)There were a few wild card accounts mostly for comedians (we both follow Conan O’Brien) but other than that, I did not find much variety in who he follows and it is very clear that he is a travel writer from San Francisco who loves Asia.