The World Nomads Podcast: We Have A Winner!

The winners of our Travel Writing Scholarship to Portugal are announced, and we reveal how to make money while traveling as an affiliate partner with World Nomads.


Photo © Ellen Hall

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The World Nomads Podcast: We Have A Winner!

In this episode, we announce the winners of our Travel Writing Scholarship who are kick-starting their travel writing career with a mentorship from professional travel writer, Tim Neville in Portugal. And, how you can make money while traveling as an affiliate partner with World Nomads.

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What’s in the Episode

00:35 Our scholarships

01:17 Richard I’Anson

03:00 Being a documentary travel photographer

03:45 What photography allows you to achieve as a traveller

05:15 Photographing festivals

10:15 How to build your bank account from blogging

13:15 About Adventure in You

19:45 A few of our affiliate partners

22:30 Becoming a partner and earn money while you travel

26:45 Tim Neville

32:40 Announcing our winners

Who is in the Episode

Travel writing mentor Tim Neville.

Scholarship winner Jill Fernandes and her story Amidst the Southern Alps. “If I had to pick just one story to talk about, this one would be it for all of its layers and the way Jill peels them back one by one until — what the?!—you realize exactly what this is all about. It is impossible to read this and feel nothing." – Tim Neville.

Photography Scholarship Mentor Richard I’Anson. Plus follow James Griesedieck on Instagram.

James Griesedieck in Morocco.

Sebastian Edwards World Nomads Partnerships Performance Manager. Join thousands of other like-minded partners and earn real money from one of the fastest-growing, global travel insurance brands.

Tom Rogers from Adventure in You.

Tour Radar.


Will Hatton – The Broke Backpacker.

Resources & Links

Cameron Beach (USA), Isabelle Abraham (Mozambique) and Jill Fernandes (New Zealand), are kick-starting their travel writing career with a mentorship from professional travel writer, Tim Neville. They’re off on a real-life assignment, exploring Portugal and writing about their adventures along the way.

Their prize includes:

A round-trip airfare from their closest international airport to Portugal.

A 4-day workshop with Tim Neville and a portfolio review from Norie Quintos.

A bespoke 10-day adventure with US $1000

Score a copy of Lonely Planet’s 'How to be a Travel Writer'.

Rail Pass

Explore more of Portugal and Europe with a 1-month Global Eurail (or Interrail) pass.

Travel Insurance provided by World Nomads.

Read their winning entries and those shortlisted here.

If you want to apply for our next Writing scholarship sign up here to be the first to know when a new opportunity is live.

This travel writing guide could be your plane ticket to see the world.

Stay tuned for our next scholarship – our Travel Filmmaking Scholarship.

Richard’s tips for photographing festivals.

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Next Episode: Amazing Nomad: Marie Javins

About World Nomads & the Podcast

Explore your boundaries and discover your next adventure with The World Nomads Podcast. Hosted by Podcast Producer Kim Napier and World Nomads Phil Sylvester, each episode will take you around the world with insights into destinations from travelers and experts. They’ll share the latest in travel news, answer your travel questions and fill you in on what World Nomads is up to, including the latest scholarships and guides.

World Nomads is a fast-growing online travel company that provides inspiration, advice, safety tips and specialized travel insurance for independent, volunteer and student travelers traveling and studying most anywhere in the world. Our online global travel insurance covers travelers from more than 135 countries and allows you to buy and claim online, 24/7, even while already traveling.

The World Nomads Podcast is not your usual travel Podcast. It’s everything for the adventurous, independent traveler. Don’t miss out. Subscribe today.

You can get in touch with us by emailing

We use the Rodecaster Pro to record our episodes when in the studio, made possible with the kind support of Rode.

Speaker 1:  Welcome to the World Nomads podcast, delivered by World Nomads, the travel lifestyle and insurance brand. It's not your usual travel podcast. It's everything for the adventurous independent traveler.

Kim:  Thanks for tuning into this special episode of the podcast. Every episode is special but [crosstalk 00:00:18] this is-

Phil:  I know, but this one even more so. I'm so excited for this one. I know lots of people will be listening for this one

Kim:  We are going to reveal the winner of our writing scholarship to Portugal, and show you how you can make money, that's right, make money while traveling as an affiliate partner with World Nomads. First though, Phil, tell us a little bit about the scholarships that World Nomads offers.

Phil:  Look, they're one of the most popular things that we do here at World Nomads, and there have been tens of thousands of people who've applied for these over the years, because we offer three scholarships each year.

Phil:  The film where you get to get some infield experience and then camera techniques and storytelling techniques from a pro. Writing, which we will learn more about in this episode, and photography where you're mentored by a professional photographer on a real photographic assignment where we publish this stuff here as well. And it's that first stepping stone onto making a living out of your passion.

Kim:  What do they say?

Phil:  Turn your passion into a profession.

Kim:  So our Photography Scholarship winner was James-

Phil:  Grice Dyke.

Kim:  He headed off to Morocco with mentor Canon Master Richard [inaudible 00:01:22].

Phil:  Let's check in with Richard and find out why James was named our winner.

Richard:  Well ultimately, he was chosen because we thought he would be a worthy recipient of the travel photography scholarship. Obviously when you get thousands of entries like we do, there could be multiple winners. So it's incredibly hard just choosing one. And ultimately we're looking for this combination of the images submitted.

Richard:  But I always stress it's not a photography combination, but the images should indicate that the person has some idea and understanding of what was asked for in the requirements, which is to tell a story through the images. So they can't just be randomly best pictures. They have to have some kind of link to each other to tell an overall story.

Richard:  And then there is a written component which gives the applicant a chance to tell us why they think they should received the scholarship. It is really hard. And of course, I think one of the most crucial things is when we get to our very, very short list, we interview the potential winners so that you can, again ask them questions, they can ask questions and you can get a sense as to whether the whole thing will really be of benefit to them.

Richard:  That's a long winded answer as to why he won.

Kim:  Now while he describes his style is as documentary style, is that what you picked up on and did you work on that with him in Morocco?

Richard:  Absolutely. That's how I describe myself too. I describe myself as a documentary travel photographer. Which essentially means we photograph it as it is. We don't set things up, rearrange stuff, that kind of thing. It's sort of as you see it, you photograph it in a documentary style. And yeah James was definitely ... That's how he sees and how he shoots as well.

Richard:  So, yes ... Which is a good thing. I mean, I can work with anyone no matter what their styles are, but I think for someone like James, we could work on that directly. But probably more importantly he could see the way I work, because I'm doing kind of what he is aiming to do.

Kim:  So what then Richard does photography allow you to achieve as a traveler?

Richard:  Well, for me it's always provided that purpose. I've never traveled and not being a professional photographer, so the two are so intertwined. But even so, I've always felt that it gives me a purpose, and it sort of gives me permission to delve into other people's worlds.

Richard:  I think it helps you to see it quite deeply. There is one school of thought that says if you've got the camera in front of your face you're not actually experiencing your travels or the moment. I personally disagree quite strongly there. I think photographers see way more than the average tourist. Partly because of the way we work. We will often go back to a place more than once. And we'll often stay at a place longer in order to capture images that go beyond just the kind of the instant that you see something or the moment that something happens, you'll often use that as a trigger to explore deeper, stay longer and return.

Kim:  You have also put together for World Nomads, a beginner's guide to photographing festivals, which we will share in our show notes. But I guess I wanted to know a few of the main tips for capturing great shots when you're often in a crowd and there's lots of fast moving action. How do you do that?

Richard:  In the first instance you need to have your technique sorted. That is the technical controls on the camera. Mainly that you're getting correct exposure for the situation you're in and that you're not running the risk of blurring the photos. So basically have your shutter speed and your aperture and your ISO set for the conditions, and if the conditions are changing, such as if you're going from bright areas into darker areas, just be constantly on alert to change those settings. So that really all your concentration and all your effort can go on seeing and capturing the actual action and the potential images in front of you.

Richard:  What happens a lot with festivals, particularly when they're exciting and they're crowded and especially if you don't have much space and you might actually be being buffeted around people. I have been known to get so excited about it, you actually forget some of those basics. Because if you haven't experienced those kinds of things [inaudible 00:06:24] it can be quite overwhelming, and so people do tend to forget to check the basics.

Richard:  And then I think a fair bit of research will always help. If you've never been to a really big festival before, it helps to know what is potentially going to happen. What some of the key events are and where you need to be for those key events. Because it's very easy to be 100 meters away from something that's incredible happening but you can't see it, and you can't get to it.

Richard:  So there's no question for me that having some research and having a plan of action on the day is really important. Professional technique if you like.

Kim:  Well, there's plenty more tips in that beginner's guide to photographing festivals, as I said, which will be in show notes. But just back to James, he wants to be a professional photographer. What's the reality of that in terms of lifestyle? What's he got in store of him Richard?

Richard:  I certainly think he's got the right attitude. He absolutely loves traveling, and certainly the work he does and the way he lives his life is all geared up to the next trip. I think one of the things he was able to learn and to see firsthand, which I think came as a bit of a surprise in the first instance was, in my view, the only way to really make this work as the profession is you have to treat it as a job. Every day it's work. And it's not ... The travel comes second. The photography and the planning and the research and how you spend your days is about the pictures. It's not about the travel experience.

Richard:  The discipline around that is huge. Getting up early every day, being on time, making sure that whatever it is you need to get you where you need to be is in place and happens. Because so much is about timing. And unlike open-ended trips, which backpackers might be used to most, well I could probably say all professional photography trips are finite in time, and I can absolutely tell you there is never enough time. Which means you really do have to be organized and have all those logistical things within your control as much as they can be under control.

Richard:  Obviously stuff happens. Things go wrong, and you have to be flexible and adapt. But in the first instance you can put a lot of things in place that made me get to the right place at the right time. And that is a discipline. And I think that was a really good learning for James. Because like so many people, his experience of travel photography has been from his trips. The trip came first and then the photography came as a result of the trip.

Richard:  The reality of travel photography these days, I think it's hard. I think it's hard to get into. It's changed significantly and I keep changing this number, but I think the last five years we've seen some very, very significant shifts in terms of how people who traditionally license pictures access them. Obviously through the Internet, but there's a glut of imagery in our field, in the travel photography field. And unfortunately people who license pictures do everything they can to not pay.

Richard:  There's no question. You've only got to look at brochures and books and everything to see that quality isn't the first thing that comes to mind when people are publishing pictures these days.

Kim:  Thank you, Richard. Links to his work and assemble of James's peaks from Morocco in show notes. Now we're going to make a call to our writing scholarship winners shortly, and let you know. It could we winners, it could be winner.

Speaker 5:  I'm very excited.

Kim:  Yeah, it's very cool. It's very cool. And we'll let you know some of the many ways you can make money from your passion, even if it is just to travel.

Kim:  So let's kick off with Tom from Adventure In You and ask how you build your bank account from blogging.

Tom:  Yeah, I mean that's a huge big question that we get all the time. The way I want to answer this is I want to try and do it in a different way that most people say. So I think a lot of people, if you ask how does a blog make money, the quick answers are going to be sponsored advertising, display ads, the pop up ads that you see, and then affiliates. That's sort of the standard answer that people say.

Tom:  I think the real money is then made with blogging when you transition to two things and that's affiliating for high ticket or like where you get high commissions for referrals, or having your own products. It's those two things. And the thing that we found with Adventure In You is that, once we transitioned and focused on adventure holidays and affiliating big tours, big activities, where our commissions where a hundred, 200, $300 for trips, then we were able to scale and build quite big.

Tom:  So obviously we're building an adventure audience, and we love adventure holidays. We drove and TukTuk across Sri Lanka last year, we're riding a TukTuk across India. We've sailed across the Philippines, we've hiked to mount Everest. And we really love that and we think that a lot of our readers that have two weeks off the year should be going on an epic adventure holiday rather than an all inclusive, just a pool holiday.

Tom:  So we started to really promote these adventure holiday experiences. And obviously we're working with the companies that we trust, we get a commission for the referrals. And then what we did is we started to scale this business model, and everybody that would come to our sites, would be notified of these strips and then we just started to scale out up. And we're currently adding more and more experiences that we trust.

Tom:  We have a list of top 50, and we're working for them with our writers and hopefully going to keep try to inspire people to go on more epic adventure holidays, rather than spending their week just sitting by the pool and not really creating much of a memory.

Phil:  So it's like being a booking engine rather than just being an affiliate. Is that the way you do it?

Tom:  Yeah, in a way. I mean the easiest way to describe it I guess is lead generation. I guess that ... You could look at it as a travel agent. I guess a travel agent would do sort of custom quotes, and they would be what are you looking to do? We sort of have more lead generation forms, where if you're reading a typical article, you can inquire about that adventure through us. And the process is you inquire, but it goes straight to the supplier, and we connect you with a supplier. And then if you book, six months later or even a year later, they still recognize that that initial referral was from us and then they credit us.

Kim:  All right. I want to put this into context though. So you're living, even though you go on adventures around the world, you're living in Southeast Asia predominantly?

Tom:  No, not really. Our company's based in Singapore. We have a Singapore Corporation, but we work online. So we currently have five employees and then we have a couple of freelancers. And we're all remote. So last year we actually spent the majority of our time in Europe. We trekked to Everest base camp and then we shot over to Europe and we lived in different places [inaudible 00:13:39] for the time.

Tom:  Lived in Barcelona, lived in Croatia, lived in Germany, Czech Republic. And now at the moment we're in Thailand and we're living here for a bit. And we're just sort of moving around.

Kim:  Okay. So that puts it into context, because are you able to say, I don't mean you will because you're transparent on your blog, you can live for around 1700 Australian dollars in Vietnam a month. That's combination food, everything. So I was thinking if you were in Southeast Asia, you are turning over some serious coin, which you will see outlined there in your blog. You must have like ... Tell us. How much you're turning over and you must be living a fantastic life.

Tom:  Yeah. We're very happy. I mean login takes a long time to be off the ground and it's not easy. But if done right, it can really sort of explode. 'Cause it's like you're organically building this engine and then if you are pulling the pieces, it's very passive. So when we ... We take periods off where we go away for a month and we'll still make 20, 30 grand in profit that month.

Kim:  What.

Tom:  Me and Anna are sort of ... We're very ... We're not spending that much. I mean we have a backpack. Unless the stuff can fit in our backpack, we don't really buy a lot of stuff.

Phil:  Where do you find the places that are offering these great conditions there? Is there a market place for them?

Tom:  This is a great question. I was recently speaking at the Nomad Summit demand in [Chaimai 00:15:18] and I was talking about this. And a developer came up to me and she was like, well how would you track this? Can I help build the software? And there is affiliate platforms for a lot of things. You can ... This Hotel Affair platforms, G adventures, one of the biggest adventure holiday companies they have, an affiliate platform. If you're working with these types of people, it's super easy. They click the link and it's all tracked.

Tom:  However, the people that we work with, they're more unique experiences. The more sort of smaller companies that specialize in certain things, and they don't have a big affiliate platform. So then when it comes with that, how do we find them? And the answer to the question and we just look at some of the best experiences that going on in the world and then reach out to them directly.

Tom:  And then in terms of the affiliate commission, the way we do it is any leads or any increase that come through us are tracked on a sheet. And then quarterly, I have one my members of staff check in with the client and then we sort of say, hey, we've sent you a hundred referrals. The average conversion rate is 5%, how many customers did you get? And we have a rough idea how many will convert, and they're very open and honest to then say as at that quarter, we've cross checked the database and this is how many have converted.

Tom:  I would love to have it all done through an affiliate program, but due to the timeframe, some people spend six months, a year to book an adventure holiday like this. It takes some time. So right now it's a bit manual.

Kim:  30 grand a month you reckon.

Phil:  Kate's ready to quit.

Tom:  So to give you perspective, I mean that's fairly Cayman. We already have taken our salary out of that. We take a salary, a low salary, and then that's what's leftover and then we decide what to do with that every quarter.

Kim:  Can I ask if you support any charities? And this is not a leading question. If you don't, you don't know.

Tom:  That's a good question. We've done campaigns with charities in the past. One of the ones that we really, really like to work with is called the Younger Focus. They're a charity in Manila, in the slums in Manila, and that was a big one. So I always get emotional when I talk about it, 'cause that was one of the hardest experiences of my life 'cause there's some big poverty up there.

Tom:  We did a campaign with them two years ago, and we've been meaning to do more and we really want to do more.

Phil:  What was so emotional about it Tom?

Tom:  I've seen poverty all over the world, but in the slums of Manila, it was just ... I can't describe it. It was just next level I guess. It was people live in trash and eating trash. And we were walking around this area and we were there to take photos and to write about it to raise money. And I actually remember raising my camera to take a photo, and the whole camera was shaking. I was physically shaking, because I was watching a baby pick a chicken bone out of trash and eat it. It was very, very emotional. You can't really prepare yourself for it.

Tom:  So in answer to your question, now we're making a bit more money from our blog, we are looking at setting up a section of that that's focused on this charity and a few others.

Phil:  As you know, Nomads has its own charitable arm as well, The Footprints Network. So more power to [crosstalk 00:18:53]

Tom:  Yeah, it's amazing.

Kim:  That too, and Phil, I don't know if this is a good time for you to touch on our affiliate partnerships as well, where you if you sell a policy through your blog, there's a bit of a kickback for you.

Phil:  10% of the face value. It's not bad.

Tom:  We're also part of the World Nomads affiliate program.

Kim:  Got to be part of everything. But you want to maintain some quality I guess, don't you Tom?

Tom:  Definitely. You're the only insurance we recommend I believe. I think there might be one of ours for a specialty thing. But, currently you guys are the ones that we promote the most, because we believe in it. I use it then and that's the one. But yeah, we're definitely on your affiliate program. And that's not a pitch. We do recommend it and we do receive commissions from it.

Kim:  Thanks for that Tom. Now let's hear a little more from our affiliate partners. I think whet your appetite there. This audio is from a series of videos World Nomads has made as case studies to demonstrate how our partners are in passive or ancillary revenue via World Nomads Travel Insurance.

Maya R:  My name is Maya Rizik. I'm the partnership manager at is the official sales channel for internal and euro pass. It's the best way to discover several countries in Europe by train with one pass. is part of World Nomads affiliate partner program.

Maya R:  What made us choose World Nomad as an insurance company for our customers is that we have the same audience and that's really important to us. Our customers are independent, experienced travelers. They're looking for unique travel experiences. So this is why it's a great match that we're working with World Nomads.

Maya R:  So what we do with World Nomads and make sure to make them as visible as possible on our website, they're of course visible on our partnership side. The revenue of World Nomads helps support by working on improving the partner offerings on our website. To make sure that it's transparent enough that it's clear for our customers, and that really was helpful from their team.

Will P:  My name is Will Hatton, and I run the Bright Backpacker, which is a travel blog all about traveling to off the beaten destinations on a budget.

Will P:  I first started traveling the world about 11 years ago. I had no money. I was hitchhiking, I was sleeping rough, I was camping, I was couch surfing, I was cooking my own food. I was planting carrots in fields. I was doing whatever was necessary to make my dream a reality. And that is what the Bright Backpacker is there for.

Will P:  So being a part of World Nomads affiliate partner program and also being a member of various other affiliate schemes means that I'm able to earn money passively whilst I'm traveling. So right now I'm in the south of France, then I'll be going to Columbia, Peru, Ecuador, back to Bali. The whole time I will be earning money passively thanks to the affiliate programs I'm partaking in, and that is real freedom.

Will P:  It means that you can be traveling and even if you're not working, you're earning money in the background the whole time.

Travis P:  My name is Travis Pitman, I'm the co-founder and CEO of TourRadar. As a World Nomads affiliate, one of the good things about it is that once you get the set up right and you get integrated in the right places, it's basically a set and forget. The customers first of all are not going to get ripped off and that they're also going to get great service and a great quality product. And then basically you wait and watch for the commission checks to kind of start rolling in after that.

Kim:  As I said, that was audio from a video series that we have created. But is it really that easy? Joining us in the studio is Sebastian Edwards, World Nomads partnerships performance manager. Seb, is it easy? And if it is so easy, why are you working here?

Phil:  What are we all doing here?

Kim:  What are we doing wrong?

Sebastian E:  That's a good question. Yes, it really is. And this is a good question. We have an online application form which you can find that It's a quick two minute application and we're open to a whole bunch of different affiliate partners that we work with, from tour operators to travel bloggers. So if you're interested, head on over, fill in the application form and we'll take it from there.

Phil:  We heard from a pretty big company not to their Eurail who are partners, but then we heard from Will Hatton as well. He's like one man band in a way, it all started off.

Sebastian E:  That's right.

Phil:  So we take them right across that whole [crosstalk 00:23:07]-

Sebastian E:  Yeah. I mean we work with probably close to 10,000 partners now, which is huge. We've got to everything from sort of mum and dad bloggers right the way up til she said Eurail and Lonely Planet. From small to large, so we're open to all, I guess.

Kim:  How does it fit in Phil with the scholarships that we're mentioning, the writing scholarships, the film scholarships, the travel scholarships.

Phil:  Well the scholarships are about people who are starting out in a way. And it's a way to get a mentor to help you learn the skills that you need to go on and turn your passion into a profession. But lots of the people end up in the partner program are already running their own blogs or they're running some sort of travel related site. But they can still be part of the World Nomads dream by becoming a partner.

Phil:  And it's like, hopefully the people who've been our writers and photographers and filmmakers go on, many of them will set up their own sites and we can help maintain that, keep your passion as your profession by helping them earn some pretty decent coin.

Kim:  Yeah, well I've seen as I scour heaps and heaps of blogs each month. I've seen World Nomads pop up. And so if I was to click on that on a blog, like Tom's Adventure in You and buy a policy straight away, some money goes to his bank account, is that right?

Sebastian E:  Yes.

Kim:  See I knew I couldn't [crosstalk 00:24:35]-

Sebastian E:  We don't want to get too technical, but in essence, yes. So there's a percentage of the policy in the form of a referral fee that you can earn by embedding affiliate links or quote widgets onto your website. And it's really a case of, as Travis said, there from TourRadar, once you embed them, it's set and forget. So it's really that simple.

Phil:  Look, if you're going on somebody's site and you see like Tom saying, you see World Nomads there with a blue hyperlink, if you just park your mouse over there, down the bottom of the page on a laptop, at least anyway, you'll see the full URL there, which is and then it'll have it's affiliate code in and stuff like that. So that's how we track who sent us the business, and then we send them their caliber.

Kim:  But it does sound pretty simple. So there's just an application process. If you are listening and you are a travel blogger or tour operator, jump onto that website you said, which we'll share in show notes.

Sebastian E:  Exactly. So it's just as you said, we'll share that. And there's a contact page there as well. So if you've got any questions, reach out to our team and we'll be happy to help.

Phil:  What sort of money do people make?

Kim:  Well, we heard Tom earlier. He makes not just from World Nomads, but he makes heaps of money from lots of different affiliates.

Sebastian E:  For a lot of guys we work with as a full-time income. It's a pretty lucrative full-time income. I don't want to get into specifics, but if you want to ... Kim's walked out. See you.

Kim:  I've got some blogging to do.

Sebastian E:  If you want to travel the world, you want to live that dream, it's definitely possible as a travel blogger, as someone who's an affiliate marketer. Look into these guys, see what they do and it's entirely possible.

Kim:  Tim Naval is a freelancer who writes frequently about the outdoors adventure and obviously travel for Outside Ski, The New York Times among many other large outlets with national and international circulations. He happens to be the writing scholarship mentor.

Kim:  And Phil, feel very shortly we're going to announce the winners. But you caught out with him to chat about this year's entries.

Tim Naval:  Happy to be here. Thanks for having me.

Phil:  And you've been having a pretty tough time of it as well because I know we got a record number of applications into this scholarship. There's something like 12 and a half thousand of them. You don't have to read them all do you?

Tim Naval:  No, no thank goodness. There's a whole team behind this, thank goodness. But hours and hours and hours of reading ... Which of course is the fun thing especially when we get such a good crop of stories this year. I would say it's probably [inaudible 00:27:18].

Phil:  Oh is that right? A really high standard then.

Tim Naval:  Yeah, for sure. With 13,000 or nearly 13,000 entries, you're going to have a wide range, but by the time they get to me, the quality is definitely going to be pretty high already. But, yeah, I would say that I noticed a certain level of ... It just seems like people maybe they've been reading the Guide, the Arctic Travel writing and maybe they that sort of articles. People really know how to craft a good travel story. But I can definitely say that I noticed people to come out of those lessons to heart. I'd be reading this, I'm like, oh wow. He really [inaudible 00:28:00]. [inaudible 00:28:02] really well. Look at the [inaudible 00:28:03]. Say is that they go into professional already. [inaudible 00:28:07] you could tell that there was more of that this time.

Phil:  Well that's good. Obviously we know because the Art of Travel writing guide is on our site, so we know how much traffic comes through in that. It's been extremely popular. So yeah, they really have been paying attention, which is great.

Phil:  And you must be looking forward now we know where we're going and when we've got an idea who's going with us, we'll announce that very soon. But you must be excited about going off on this new assignment with them.

Tim Naval:  Oh, for sure. It's something I look forward to every year. Absolutely. One of the great things and many people wrote about this year in their essays is, the people we get to meet along the way. And so yes, of course we get to hang out and they get to know the winners here very well. But what's really fun is it's a sharing process for sure. Is that I feel like I can ... 'Cause so many people helped me along the way. I didn't get here by myself. So it's really, really [inaudible 00:29:05] my perspective, to be able to offer what I've learned, what I've been taught and hand that down.

Tim Naval:  And I hope, I really hope that the winners here will be able to take what they learned from me and they would have passed that on and inspire other people to go out and travel. Because [inaudible 00:29:22]. And it looks more fun and rewarding the traveling and going out and learning new things, making new friends. It makes the world feel a little bit smaller, a little bit more meaningful, and it's truly rewarding experience.

Phil:  You say you noticed a few different sort of techniques, writing techniques. Were any themes though? Was there anything that seems to be the Zeitgeist at the moment?

Tim Naval:  There was a lot of Cuba. We got a lot of Cuba entries I would say. That would be in terms of space, and it was fun to see some more unusual destinations thrown in there. One of the stories I really liked was about Chernobyl. You don't really think of Chernobyl as being a travel destination. And I think it just goes to show that traveling just naturally lends itself to great stories. And it takes a certain kind of person I would say to be able to do what it is that we're experiencing when we're up on the road.

Tim Naval:  If you want to like run it through our minds, across [inaudible 00:30:27] again and figure out how to wait [inaudible 00:30:29]. To capture that and then .. It's really hard to explain. But to make art out of it I guess. To take the raw material we're experiencing out there, run it through our memories, through different ways of ... To craft stories and then spit it back out in a way that makes [inaudible 00:30:49] the readers [inaudible 00:30:50]. The comments on something bigger makes you think about something, makes you laugh, makes you feel something.

Tim Naval:  So again, all in all I was really blown away by the level of quality.

Phil:  We can only have three winners. So do you have anything that you'd like to say to the people who've missed out?

Tim Naval:  Thank you first of all. I know it's kind of a bummer. 'Cause the thing is, is that, I never had an opportunity like this. I wish I had, but there are plenty of ways to go after what it is that you really want. And if you want to be a travel editor, there any plenty of other paths you can take. It's hard [inaudible 00:31:33] the door's not shut it.

Tim Naval:  I would encourage those folks to keep doing what they're doing, get out there, ask questions, be curious. To try to read, to talk to other writers, to fail as funny as that sounds. I don't think I would've got anywhere near where I am today if I hadn't failed over and over and over again. Because each time I learned something different. And before long, all of a sudden you're a travel writer. I think persistence is the absolute key to something like this.

Phil:  I know you've got to run to catch a plane. Are you going on assignment or you're going home?

Tim Naval:  I'm coming back from an assignment. I'm on my way home.

Phil:  Where've you been?

Tim Naval:  I've been in Montana, which is a street dear to my heart. It's actually what my writing career, the very early stages of my writing career began. The first people I ever wrote for were, when I was living here in Montana were Montana publication.

Phil:  Well, fantastic. Safe flight and put your feet up at home for a little while and we'll see you pretty soon ready to go off on the travel writing scholarship.

Tim Naval:  I am so excited. Can't wait for it.

Kim:  Okay. So the biggest number of scholarship applications ever received, an astounding 12,415 applications. No wonder he's exhausted, Tim there. Four rounds of judging. Huge lift to as you worked out there or chatted with Tim about the quality-

Phil:  Quality of the way that I say the word application. That one.

Kim:  That's exactly right. Can't speak, can write.

Phil:  That's it.

Kim:  Enough said.

Phil:  Yeah, come on.

Kim:  Come on. Let's get to the chase. We've got one of the winners that we have access now. We are at World Nomads headquarters here in Sydney. So obviously time difference makes all the difference. Gee, I'm good with the words.

Phil:  I've got the phone connected. Should we just hit the button?

Kim:  Yeah. I think I'll let you speak to [crosstalk 00:33:28].

Phil:  All right. They have no idea that they've ... They know they're short listed, but don't know they've won.

Kim:  Must be the nerves.

Phil:  Here we go.

Jill:  Hello?

Phil:  Hello. Can I speak to Jill please?

Jill:  Yes, this is Jill speaking.

Phil:  Hello Jill. My name's Phil Sylvester. I'm calling from World Nomads legal department. How are you?

Jill:  I'm good, thank you. How are you?

Phil:  I'm great. Look, we're just checking up. I know you've been shortlisted for the travel writing scholarship. There's just something I would like to check with you if that's all right.

Jill:  Okay, yes.

Phil:  Yes. The priest in your story, we just want to make sure that you got a model release form from him saying it's okay to write about him?

Jill:  Is that necessary?

Phil:  Actually no, it's not. Because-

Kim:  You're hopeless.

Phil:  I'm hopeless. This is Phil and Kim from the World Nomads podcast, and we are actually ringing you up to tell you, you are one of the three winners.

Jill:  That's awesome. Thank you so much.

Kim:  Our other winners includes Isabelle Abraham from Mozambique and also Cameron Beach, a winner from the USA and their stories will be in show notes. Yay. Congratulations.

Jill:  Thank you.

Kim:  Now you've got yourself a round trip air fare from New Zealand to Portugal, the four day workshop with Tim Neville, a bespoke 10 day adventure with $1,000 and you score a copy of Lonely Planets How To Be A Travel Writer. You're well on your way. There's a heap of other prizes there Phil that we will list in show notes, but congratulations on your entry.

Jill:  Thank you so much. I really don't know what to say. I was quite stoked when I got the call yesterday saying that I was shortlisted. So this is great news.

Kim:  We will have all the links you need from becoming an affiliate partner to turning your passion into a profession with our scholarships.

Kim:  Told you it was going to be a special episode.

Phil:  It's fantastic. I love doing that.

Kim:  I know. Now let your favorite podcast App or player tell you when there's a new episode of the World Nomads podcast available. But the easiest way to listen to all of our podcasts is to go to

Kim:  And if you know someone who loves traveling as much as you do, please tell them about us. We really do appreciate any likes, shares, and social love that you'd care to give us Phil.

Phil:  And you can get in touch with us directly by emailing

Phil:  Next week, back to our regular schedule of podcast. And I think we've got an amazing nomad coming up.

Kim:  I think we do. We'll see you next week.

Phil:  Bye.

Kim:  Bye.

Speaker 1:  The World Nomads podcast. Explore your boundaries.


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