Whether traveling for a short period of time or living abroad permanently, every person will have a different experience and a fresh way to tell it. Because of this, writing, especially travel writing, is a great way to supplement your travels or generate income when abroad.
The tools to get started are simple: all you really need is a computer and information to share. Prior experience with professional writing is a definite plus as you’ll need good grammar to get your point across clearly and discipline to meet deadlines. Depending on who you’re writing for, knowledge of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is also a bonus if your work will be posted online.
Next, you need to find publications and websites that are looking for writers. Your native language can be a great asset when searching for work, as companies often need information written in a different language than that of their home country in order to appeal to a larger audience.
The Internet is a fantastic resource for locating writing gigs. Some larger companies who need a permanent or telecommuting employee will post ads through job listing search engines such as Indeed.com. Craigslist.com can be another useful avenue for quickly finding jobs both in-country and throughout the world. However, if you plan to focus your writing on your travels, try to locate the local newspapers and magazines that will find your articles relevant.
If you’ve never been a professional writer, it might take a little time to build up your portfolio, as most employers will want to see examples of your work. One way to get your foot in the door is to submit a couple of well-written articles to local online publications as free content, and only request that you get the “by line”, which means that your name appears with the article. Having your work appear online in a format that is easy to reference will give you credibility for future opportunities.
Another free and simple way to get your name and writing out to the world is to start an online blog and self-publish your writing there. This will give you the freedom to write on the topics of your choice and to express yourself freely, as every person has a different writing style.
The only real way to start a writing career while living abroad is to start writing now. Take notes on your daily routine, points of interest, or your favorite breakfast place down the street. If you’ve ever had an interest in being a writer, pursuing this career while living internationally will provide you with both a rewarding career, as well as some money in your pocket.