My Experience of Teaching a Travel Writing Course

I’ve been pretty fortunate to have the opportunity to teach a course called Special Topics in Travel Writing at Stevenson University, where I am a full-time professor. It’s one of my favorite courses to teach, and for years in another course I teach called Feature Writing, we cover travel writing as part of the curriculum….

How I’ve STARTED WITH WHY and the times I LOST MY WHY

*** Simon Sinek was able to take things we all think or have thought in the business world and world of creative leadership and make sense of it. He rationalized it all in a way that makes sense to us. I found myself nodding and giving him silent “Amens” as I read along, chapter by…

Handling the Insecurities of Publishing A Novel

*** It’s a challenging endeavor. I’ve done it twice now with fiction, and twice with nonfiction books. And I’m about to do it again when I release my latest, third fictional novel. There will always be anxieties that manifest themselves into insecurities about putting our work out there. The tendency to feel nervous about it…

Yes, You Are Creative

I can’t tell you how many times in my advertising and writing classes I teach at the university that I hear students tell me that they are not creative, or that they just don’t have a lot of creativity in their bones. As someone who has been teaching for over 25 years, I think I…

Just For Today, I’m Feeling A Little Like Elizabeth Gilbert

* * * Here’s the thing: Today, I am feeling a little like Elizabeth Gilbert. I admire Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Eat, Pray, Love and the current hit The Signature of All Things) tremendously and had the privilege of hearing her speak as well when she was a keynote for Stevenson’s Speaker Series a few…

Proud of My Travel Writers

* * * The semester is over, and now the students are taking final exams. I have completed teaching a Special Topics in Local Travel Writing course in our Business Communication department at Stevenson University, and I have one thing to say. I loved it. As any form of travel is wont to do, a…

On Happiness—Duh?

My travel writing class is watching “Eat, Pray, Love” this week. We are taking a little respite from reading travel stories to watching one (though I am having them read an excerpt from her book as well). The point I am trying to make is this: Don’t watch a film about traveling if you are…

Brushing Up Against Mad Creativity

Look around you. Seriously, look around you. Everything you see came from someone, but more importantly it started out as simply a creative idea. We’ve all had those moments when creativity is a spark, when it burns brightly, then fades away. We’ve also has those moments when creativity is a fire, burning brightly and furiously,…

A Big, Blue Bottle of Creativity To Go, Please.

Last fall, Elizabeth Gilbert visited Baltimore as part of Stevenson University’s Speaker Series that takes place at the Meyerhoff in Baltimore. I was excited to attend as I had read Eat, Pray, Love, and also had recently seen the film. Additionally, I had forced my feature writing students to watch a clip from Ted.com in…