Thomas Swick on the paradox of travel writing’s prestige

“Tell most people you’re a travel writer and you’ll be greeted with exclamations of envy. Ask them to name a travel book they’ve recently read and, almost inevitably, you’ll be met with silence.”
–Thomas Swick, “Are Travel Writers the New Poets?World Hum, October 24, 2011

Posted by | Comments (2)  | December 31, 2012
Category: Travel Quote of the Day

2 Responses to “Thomas Swick on the paradox of travel writing’s prestige”

  1. DEK Says:

    I couldn’t tell you the name of the travel book I am reading at the moment. I tend to remember only the names of books that had a lot of critical buzz. The sort of thing that Chatwin was so good at. The sort of book whose title you want to remember so you can impress people by mentioning that you are reading it. The rest I just read. I have read many excellent travel books, which I remember in some detail, but whose title completely escapes me. Perhaps it would help if I were more of a travel book snob. The important thing is did it make an impression on you.

    Or perhaps so many people admire the imagined adventurousness of travel writers without feeling any need actually to read what they write. It is very common to profess admiration for a virtue without feeling the need to practice it.

  2. GypsyGirl Says:

    A few days ago I began to read “The Size of the World” by Jeff Greenwald, and am rereading many chapters of “Marco Polo Didn’t Go There.” While traveling I met a wonderful poet,Stuart Dischell, and am reading one of his books currently, as well, “Backwards Days.”

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