January 2016 BCATW Buzz

Ruth at Canadian InstituteA message from the BCATW President

HAPPY NEW YEAR to all the members and associates of the BC Association of Travel Writers. We hope you will have an exciting year of travel ahead and find success submitting your travel stories.

2015 has been an excellent year for BCATW with a successful symposium held April 18 at the Century Plaza Hotel. The topic was Ecotourism and our keynote speaker was Jack Christie.

We look forward to our 2016 symposium to be held April 10 at the Anvil Centre in New Westminster. The proposed topic will be BC Tourism. More details coming up after our next Board meeting in late January.  There will also be a series of new meet-ups planned so stay tuned for news about those.  Cheers to all of you, and happy travels in 2016! 

– W. Ruth Kozak
BCATW President, www.ruthkozak.com

Your 2016 Dues Are Due

Your 2016 membership dues must be paid by January 31, 2016. We offer two ways to remit:

a) $48.00 by cheque payable to BCATW and mailed to: K. Cullen – BCATW, 1153 56 Street, PO Box 19029, Delta, BC V4L 2P8
b) $50.00 via PayPal on the Payments page (there is a $2.00 PayPal fee).

An associate membership cannot be renewed, but is upgraded to full membership once evidence of one paid, published travel piece is submitted.

When you send your proof of publication of one paid travel article (you have until May 2016 to do so), your status is upgraded to full and a new press card is issued.

BCATW Member News

Pondy Bazaar area - Chennai

Pondy Bazaar area, Chennai – Irene Butler

Irene Butler’s article “A South Indian Christmas” was published on Travel Writers Tales and also appeared in their affiliated newspapers – Vernon Morning Star and Kamloops this Week. Irene and her husband Rick have a soft spot for India and are now planning a fourth visit to the country.

Ruth Kozak recently signed another contract with Hunter Publishing, US for an ebook guide on the GREEK ISLANDS.  Ruth also just had an article about MARTHON, GREECE and the history of the marathon race published in EuropeUpClose. If you’re planning a trip to Greece this year be sure to look for Ruth’s ATHENS AND BEYOND ebook published by Hunters and available on Kindle at Amazon.  

In November 2014, Roberta Staley travelled with photojournalist Tallulah Gutteridge to El Salvador to report upon the work of the Canadian NGO Speroway, which provides dental and medical services and food to the poor. One of the stories appeared in Corporate Knights, a national magazine that is a supplement in the Globe and Mail and the Washington Post. The story, titled “Cola Kids Need A Fix,” addressed the impact of soft drinks, specifically Coke and Pepsi, on the health of Salvadoran children. This past December, the story was given an Amnesty International Canada Media Award in the alternative print category (magazines) for addressing the issue of corporate social responsibility in the developing world. Other stories and photos related to this reporting endeavour can be viewed on my blog, Journeys to the Edge.

darlene foster

Three Kings Day parade in Torrevieja, Spain

Darlene Foster enjoyed her second Christmas in Spain. Her article, Christmas on the Costa Blanca, was featured in Travel Thru HistoryAlong with her husband, she has recently explored interesting ports of call including, Aix en Provence, Genoa, Pompeii, Messina, Malta and Mallorca, and has just returned from Asturias in Northern Spain. She is looking forward to Fiesta De Los Reyes, Three Kings Day, on January 6, the most important Christmas holiday in Spain. She wishes all her BCATW friends a very Happy New Year with safe travels in 2016!

Ferguson Palm Springs

Sunrise overlooking the 16th fairway at Marriott’s Shadow Ridge Golf Club. © Photos by Pharos 2015

This fall resulted in a bonanza for Julie H. Ferguson that demonstrates the huge value in engaging on social media with your travel destinations. Every year she spends a month in Palm Desert before Christmas relaxing and playing golf. But last November, the phone rang on day one and it was the manager of Marriott’s Shadow Ridge Golf Club, with whom she interacts regularly on Facebook. “I love your photos and wonder if you would do a shoot for us while you’re here,” he said.  “No kidding!” said Julie, amongst other things. So she spent a glorious day and a half working for him, which produced 300 images for the golf club and resort, and a nice fee for Julie! 

While searching for the true spirit of Christmas, luxury travel writer Edward Quan discovered the Leavenworth Christmas Lighting Festival held in a small Bavarian village nested in the heart of Washington’s Cascade Mountains. He experienced a snow packed weekend where they illuminate of over one-half million Christmas lights and feasted on Schweinshax’n, German broiled pork hocks. Read more on his adventure at Blush Vancouver Magazine and Travel Thru History.

Upcoming Meetups

Stayed tuned for an announcement for a BCATW Meetup in January. If you are interested in presenting at a BCATW Meetup, or if you want to nominate a speaker, please contact us.

Meanwhile, travel bloggers and webmasters should attend:

Keywords To Profit with Cijaye DePradine
Tuesday, January 19, 2016 at 7:00 PM at Big Rock Urban Eatery
Presented by WordPress Workshop

WordPress Workshop members have asked to learn more about keyword research, and now we have the perfect person to tell us about the esoteric art of the keyword. Cijaye DePradine.

Author of the upcoming book Knowledge To Profit; How Leading Experts Transfer Their Knowledge To Increase Profits, Cijaye DePradine has been deeply immersed in Corporate, Executive and Collegiate training since 1995 (specializing in Marketing Online & Offline).

Having delivered over 15,000 hours of training, developed over 1000 hours of curriculum and experienced billings up to $1000/hr as a mentor and consultant, Cijaye is a true leader in the field.

If you want to discover how Cijaye has successfully turned keyword research and targeting into multi-million dollar revenues, you don’t want to missKeywords To Profit on January 19th, 2016 at Big Rock Brewpub.

She will take you through her entire process – leaving nothing out – and you will walk away viewing “keywords”, “blogging”, “SEO,” and “Search Marketing” as far more powerful to your growth and success than you could have ever imagined.

Keywords To Profit is currently unannounced but you can RSVP now!

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