Genius loci

[Genius Loci] October 2022

1 October 2022

Hello, autumn. But here in Florida it still feels like summer. Oh, and Hurricane Ian is poised to strike the peninsula tomorrow. I’m writing and scheduling this a few days early in the likely event that power outages persist through the end of the week.

The last month has been productive. As you may know, I’m working on a book-shaped thing, replete with photos and a narrative, based on my travels to Bolivia. As you can see in the image above, part of the work involves selecting and sequencing images. One particularly challenging task of working on a book with words and images is thinking about the images with the words in mind, and vice versa. A book with both word and image is an order of magnitude more difficult to create than just a photobook or wordbook (both of which being difficult things themselves).

Because I envision this to be a special object, I will probably crowdfund the book. Few publishers would touch this weird, hybrid book thing anyway. And the print-on-demand (POD) technology that indie publishers use can’t yet produce high-quality, special-edition books worth a damn. By crowdfunding the book, if successful, I can ensure a quality printing with beautiful materials. Sure, it will be more expensive than a POD book. But some projects — particularly ones with photographs — demand better materials and are worth the expense.

If you want to get notified when the book’s crowdfunding campaign launches (whenever that may be), sign up here.

Now, onto what you came for:

Last month we published

※ An essay called How to Approach to Photobooks with Words on my website
※ A podcast with Bill Colegrave about “Scraps of Wool” on Travel Writing World
※ A guest podcast interview by Bill Colegrave with Tony Wheeler on Travel Writing World
※ An author profile of Benedict Allen on Travel Writing World

🏖 On Deskbound Traveller, Michael Kerr is eager to read Solito by Javier Zamora and a book about the invasion of Ukraine called Diary of an Invasion by Andrey Kurkov.

🐪 Ryan Murdock speaks with David Thompson about the mapping of Canada on the Personal Landscapes Podcast.

↪️ Rolf Potts speaks with Ari Shaffir about travel on his podcast Deviate. He also appeared again on the Tim Ferris podcast to talk about his new book The Vagabond’s Way.

📚 Michelle Jana Chan speaks with Mona Arshi and Tim Mackintosh-Smith on her podcast The Wandering Book Collector.

🗣 Travel Writer Matt Kepnes is profiled on Rolf Potts’ blog.

🗺 Stanford’s book of the month is Vitali Vitaliev’s Atlas of Geographical Curiosities. Its children’s BOTM is Incredible India by Jasbinder Bilan. The London bookstore also has a few in-person author talks scheduled for this month.

🗺 Stanfords published a few posts about Colin Thubron, Nelly Bly, and Tutankhamun on their blog.

📸 On Steve McCurry’s curated blog, images about bicycles.

📷 The NYT published photo essays about a grass tennis court in Iowa and tending to injured birds of prey on their World Through a Lens series (🔒).

🏄‍♀️ Jörg Colberg reviews I Just Wanna Surf, a photobook about African American women surfers in California by Gabriella Angotti-Jones.


🎧 Coming Jan 2023, a new podcast series called Skylark by Sophy Roberts and Guy Hayward about song and land.

🇦🇬 Jamaica Kincaid chats with the good folks at the Literary Friction podcast.

🇳🇵 Lance Richardson retraces the route of the 1973 expedition undertaken by US author Peter Matthiessen to remote, NW Nepal.

✍️ Tim Hannigan is running a travel writing workshop in Leicester on October 8.

🤬 National Geographic magazine lays off six of its top editors.

🪖 The Travel Writer as Soldier: The First World War Adventures of Nariman Karkaria.

🥇 Wainwright Prize announced its 2022 winners.

🥈Six titles are shortlisted this year by the British Academy Book Prize, a 10-year-old award for nonfiction that contributes to ‘global cultural understanding.’

🥉 Half the shortlisted books for the £50,000 Booker Prize for Fiction are from independent publishers. The winner will be known October 17.

🏅 SATW announces its 2022 Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Awards winners.

🎖 The 2022 Travel Media Awards winners were announced.

🇺🇸 The 2022 National Book Awards nonfiction longlist.

🌄 The 2022 Banff Mountain Book Competition category finalists have been announced.

🏔 2022 Boardman Tasker Award for Mountain Literature shortlist announced.

🏆 The 2022 Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-Fiction longlist.

🌊 A review of Robert Kaplan’s Adriatic.

🌿 404 Ink lands a collection of nature writing by women of color.

🎼 Music from Jenny Sturgeon’s album inspired by The Living Mountain. 

🤫 Travel Writer and Editor Don George Shares His Secrets.

📔 Why I still travel with my Rough Guide.

🛫 A Travel Writer’s Memoir Puts A Personal Meaning On Departures.

👵🏻 Choosing Travel Writing As A Retirement Career?

☕️ Wish I Was Here: 7 Travel Coffee Table Books.

🪦 Spanish literary great Javier Marías dies at 70.

👑 Queen Elizabeth through Magnum’s lens.

🪦 Iconic French New Wave director Jean-Luc Godard dead at 91.

🪦 William Klein, who helped revolutionize photography, dies aged 96.

🦜The Winners of the 2022 Bird Photographer of the Year Competition.

🇮🇳 A review of Expedition Borderlands with Levison Wood and Ash Bhardwaj.

🇲🇽 An audio/visual story exploring the sounds of Mexico City’s streets.

🏔 Peak Performance: British photographer Colin Prior in conversation with Nick Smith.

🙋‍♀️ What to read to follow the footsteps of great women travel writers.

🚲 Dervla Murphy’s fierce and poetic account of traversing the world on two wheels in the 1960s.

🛣 Photographing America’s diners: When nostalgia becomes political.

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