Taryn White is an author, blogger, and serial wanderluster always looking for her next adventure. This native Southerner was first bitten by the travel bug at the age of 4 when her family drove cross country to California. That family road trip is forever etched in her memory, but so are many of her other incredible travel experiences. Having visited more than 50 countries on six continents, 50 U.S. states, and numerous cities around the globe, she sees travel as transformative. She believes there’s no better way to learn more about the world and about yourself, and she has explored many of the world’s hotspots and hidden gems, from Switzerland to Swaziland. She created tripwishlist.com as a platform to encourage herself and others to make their travel dreams come true by envisioning their travel bucket lists and discovering exciting places.
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Taryn’s Book Writing and Publishing Tips shared in this episode:
- Set aside a specific time to write each day
- Don’t worry about context or making sense in the first draft – just write!
- Writing a book will help you formalize your message. You can use excerpts from the book as sound bites
Taryn’s Recommended Resources
Connect with Taryn
Author of Get Your Travel On
Expert Author 411: Hello and welcome to episode #1 of Publish to Grow Your Business. Our guest today is Taryn White, author of Get Your Travel On. Taryn is an author, blogger, serial wander luster, always looking for her next adventure. This native southerner was first bitten by the travel bug at the age of 4 when her family drove cross country to California.
That family road trip is forever etched in her memory, but so are many of her other incredible travel experiences. Having visited more than 50 countries on 6 continents, 50 United States and numerous cities around the globe she sees travel as transformative. She believes there’s no better way to learn more about the world and about yourself.
She has explored many of the world’s hot spots and hidden gems from Switzerland to Swaziland. She created tripwishlist.com as a platform to encourage herself and others to make their travel dreams come true by envisioning their travel bucket list and discovering exciting places. Welcome Taryn.
Taryn: Hi. It’s actually Taren.
Expert Author 411: Okay. I’m so sorry. Welcome to the show today. As you heard this is our very first episode of Publish to Grow Your Business. So, I’m so excited that you are our first guest, and excited about the topic that we’re going to talk about today because travel is one of the things that I love to do as well.
Let’s jump right in and let me ask you since you are a traveler what is your favorite place to visit?
Taryn: Wow. That’s a very good question. Growing up it was Atlanta cause that was my first big city to visit as a child. It seems like I’ve always had like a fascination with big city. I think that I almost love visiting Paris. There’s just something about the culture there, the artistry, the architecture. It’s one of my favorite places to visit time and time again.
Expert Author 411: Yeah. I’m a big fan of Paris as well. It was one of the few places that I visited that I feel lived up to the hype. There are a lot of cities that have a lot of hype associated with them. But Paris was one that did not disappoint and I didn’t say, “Oh, it was better on TV.” Yeah. It’s definitely one of my favorites as well.
Talk to us a little bit about your background and how you got to travel to so many different places both in the United States and abroad.
Taryn: I grew up in Tennessee. So I’m southerner as well and I’ve always had a fascination with maps and traveling from an early age. So, growing up my family we did a lot of road trips and drove cross country into different states. And so at an early age, I had already visited a lot of states through the road trips.
In grade school, my favorite class was geography. I was very knowledgeable of the state of the country, world capital. I was so fascinated by maps so I would study them. I had a fascination for architecture so I study that.
But my inspiration for starting the business was a strong desire to give the gift of travel and to express my ideas about travel and to encourage other people to travel more particularly Americans. And just to find ways to help people travel more.
Expert Author 411: Why do you think people don’t travel as much as they could?
Taryn: I think in the US our culture is such that there is a high work ethic and an expectation to work a lot. You see it a little bit less so in other country. In some countries there’s a 35 hour work week and they have like five week vacation standard. So here it’s just a little more difficult, and a lot of people feel that they might feel guilty for taking time off. There’s also a cost reason too.
Expert Author 411: Right. I know one of the things that you have championed is that it’s not as expensive as you think to travel. So can you talk a little bit about that?
Taryn: There’s several ways to curb your costs. You could save money. You could set money aside. If you’re looking to go on a dream trip try to find some ways to cut back on some things like coffee or whatever everyday and put it in a travel savings account. But there’s lots of other tools like some of the credit cards that offer the bonuses for signing up and spending a certain amount, which you could leverage to earn free travel using the points.
And you have loyalties in a lot of these programs. You get perks – free nights and breakfast and upgrades as well. So, there are a few tools that you can use. There’s site that you can sign up for that can give you travel deal on flight. HotelTonight is an app that if you were to look the day of you can get like really really discounted rates on hotel.
Expert Author 411: Okay. Great. That kind of leads us right into your book which you wrote because you wanted to help people navigate through this whole travel situation. So talk to us about your book. Why did you decide to write the book and who is the book really meant for?
Taryn: I wrote the book to – it’s a marketing tool for my business. It helps me to build authority and solidify my own ideas about my experiences. I wanted to provide strategies, hacks and tips on how to make travel a reality. It really is more geared toward American travels versus international travelers and people that are looking to travel more. So probably not business travelers but just everyday people looking to travel more.
Expert Author 411: Okay. So give us an idea of what types of things people can find in the book? Go through the different topics in your table of contents. Give us an idea of what kinds of tips people will discover when they read your book.
Taryn: So there are five keys. They’re based upon like travel planning, travel hacking, packing, and travel insurance and then just travel tips overall. One of the things that I talked about is that I just don’t see travel as a luxury. I see it as necessity. I see it as a path to wellness. Because I just don’t think that people should work 52 weeks and lose vacation time. It’s not really healthy.
So from a health aspect you should take that time. Whether you stay in the US which is a very beautiful country or go to another country, you should definitely take time to not work and just enjoy living.
I mean it seems so fundamental but a lot of us in this country aren’t doing that. That’s the main point of a book. And some of the other topics are just when is the good time to travel. What are some tools or websites you can use? Some travel terminology like open-jaw ticket, fuel surcharge, the different airline alliances because airline alliances are important when using miles and figuring out who flies where.
Expert Author 411: Now go into a little bit more detail on airline alliances. What do you mean by air alliances because our listeners probably may not be as familiar with that term?
Taryn: I’m really talking about the big three major airline alliances: Oneworld, SkyTeam and Star Alliance. There are three legacy carriers for the US: American, Delta, and United cause all of them have consolidated. We used to have a lot more and then only like three major ones. American Airlines belong to Oneworld, Delta belongs to SkyTeam, and United belongs to Star Alliance.
So, there are several partner alliances from other country airlines that are in these three. British Airways is part of Oneworld with American. So it’s code-share flight that the different carriers used to fly within these different countries. British Airways we have a code-share flight on American Airlines who is flying in the US. These partnerships have the loyalty programs, add value, and help people to have cheaper fares and other perks.
Expert Author 411: Now you know the airlines have been in the news recently and particularly United Airlines with a situation with a passenger being bumped involuntary. Have you had any bad experiences when you have flown? And if so, can you share with us how the airline handled it or what you would recommend to our travelers to help them if they run into that situation?
Taryn: I’m sure everyone has had some sort of airline mishap. I remember flying on Corporate Airlines from DC to Panama, and I just don’t understand why it just took forever at the gate. I mean we were there for like an hour at the check-in counter. I could not understand why. And so they basically oversold that flight so they were trying to bump us off that flight.
And so we were like the last passengers on that flight because we’re like, no, we are not going to take the later flight. We paid for them. We showed up early. People behind us got on. I think we were one of the few people doing a nonstop. Other people were going on connecting flights to other parts of South America.
I guess they determined that we are going to be the ones getting kicked off and I was like no. I don’t understand exactly why they can’t operate their systems to have better booking and why they’re overselling so much. When you have things to do, it’s not really fair to the passenger that you don’t have a seat.
Expert Author 411: Right.
Taryn: So, you can sit in business class.
Expert Author 411: So, that’s one of the thing you can do is potentially asked for an upgrade instead of having to bump you, right?
Expert Author 411: Yeah. Now what about on the opposite end of the spectrum? What is the one of the best travel experiences you had?
Taryn: On airlines?
Expert Author 411: Either on an airline or a hotel.
Taryn: On an airline, one of the best airlines that I’ve flown is Air New Zealand. I don’t know. It’s just clean and the service is great. It was economy. We had a full meal. We flew from Australian to Aukland.
Even on that short flight the service was fantastic. They might have satellite TV. It was economy and it was fantastic; better than some business class service.
Expert Author 411: Okay. Great. It’s good to know.
Taryn: Yeah. I really like that.
Expert Author 411: Okay. That’s great.
Taryn: Yeah. A lot of the time for me some of the best experiences with hotel are the spa. I really like spa. I had an amazing spa in Maldives. It was kind of outdoor, overwater bungalow spa. It had like sand floors even though it was over water. You can look down and see the fish from a glass window in the floor. That’s just really cool.
I think I had one at sunset when it ended and so when I was done I could just watch the sunset. So, it was just really really relaxing.
Expert Author 411: That’s great. It sounds very inviting. Now let’s about your writing experience because this podcast is going to help aspiring authors to really get those books written and published. How did you find time to write your book and how long did it take you to get to that first draft?
Taryn: I set aside time like a few days, few evenings. Probably like four times a week for two to three hours in the evening after like dinner to write ideas that I have. So, I would just start writing and I wouldn’t care about if it made sense or not.
I grouped the ideas into okay I think I want to do this, this or this. And so whenever I had an inspiration I would start writing. I wouldn’t worry about whether it make sense, whether it link with anything. So I did that for a few months. When did I get to a first draft? Probably about three months I got to a first draft and I was probably done in six months.
Expert Author 411: Okay. That’s great. I think that’s probably a really reasonable timeframe especially for first time authors. I love the idea of setting aside time to write every day. That’s one of the things that I recommend to my clients is that you create a little ritual and pick the best time of day for you. It might be in the morning. It might be at lunch time. It might be after dinner when you put the kids to bed.
Carving out that time and religiously writing is really important. I loved the other thing that you said which is not worrying about whether it all fit together initially. Just write, write, write, and then you can always go in and make it flow logically after you’ve gotten that first draft out. But it’s really really important to get that first draft out.
Now what did you use to write book? Did you use Microsoft Word or did you use some other tool?
Taryn: No. I used Microsoft Word because I really didn’t have the patience to figure out a new tool when I was trying to figure out what I was going to say. I thought it might deter me from writing if I have to figure out the tool.
Expert Author 411: Right.
Taryn: So I just used Microsoft Word, blank screen because no distraction there. I like the simplicity of that.
Expert Author 411: Okay.
Taryn: Sometimes I use pen and paper. Depending on where I was sometimes, it was pen and paper.
Expert Author 411: Yes. And then you would just read/write your notes in Word when you got to a computer?
Expert Author 411: Okay. All right. Now did you self publish your book? I believe you did.
Expert Author 411: Let me ask you this. Were there any pitfalls that you experienced as you were navigating your way through the self publishing world?
Taryn: Just trying to figure out what to do like how much services to buy, proof reading, developmental. So, what services to buy and what are these services that other companies offer? That was a pitfall. Some stuff you probably don’t need. You don’t really know if you need it. So that was a bit of a grey area and you don’t have a team per se around your book when you’re self publishing. You have to build that.
Expert Author 411: Exactly. Now that you have the book, how are you using it to help brand your business and how did you use it in your marketing effort?
Taryn: It’s a networking tool. You know when I’m pitching myself in various ways I’m an author. I have that under my belt. It just shows a level of authority in your niche. It’s also helped me to develop my message and articulate my ideas because I’ve gone through and I’ve reached in like this is how I feel about X and I read it a whole bunch of time. So it’s almost like you kind of remember phrases from your book as like sound like.
So, it’s really good at that. It’s a resource for me actually like, oh wait, I did write something about that. What did I say about that? I like to write this down cause my memory is you know. I wouldn’t say I have the best memory in the world so that’s why I’m always writing and documenting stuff. And so I go back to the book and I see what I had researched and documented, and I read it for myself to refresh my own memory. So, it’s just been a really good resource for me to promote the brand and solidify my ideas.
Expert Author 411: Right. Yeah. Those are all really wonderful ways to use the book. I also know that when we met, we met at a conference and you had little cards that were business sized cards that offered a free download of the PDF version of your book as part of your efforts in networking at the conference. Is that something that you would recommend to other authors?
Taryn: I would. I think that’s a good thing to do. It’s very memorable particularly when you’re networking with other business people. It’s kind of like an easy way to pitch yourself. You know a new take on a business card.
Expert Author 411: Yes, right. I really liked that. I thought it was very innovative the way that you used that. Now let’s about your website for a moment tripwishlist.com, and what can people expect as a resource from your website or how would they use your website?
Taryn: So, the website I launched last year, last summer and it’s a tool to help travelers from around the world document their travel bucket list, find out who else is interested or has done what you have done or are interested in. Many of us talked about hey I’m going to cross that off my list.
Like if you see some place you’re like I’m going to add that to my list and now you literally can do that. You literally can do that on my site. It’s new and so it’s going to continue building and growing. I’m going to continue offering new services and things to the users. But that’s fundamentally what the site is all about.
Expert Author 411: It really has social aspect as well because I can go on and put my bucket list, travel wish list out there and I can see other people’s wish list as well. I think I can also like other people’s bucket list, correct?
Taryn: You can save something that they have created as their activity. So if someone wants to go to Paris you can save that to yours. You can mark that what’s already done. So you don’t have to create your whole bucket list. You can just save other people’s stuff if that’s what you want to do as well.
Expert Author 411: Right. I really like that social aspect of it. How can listeners get in contact with you? What’s the best way to reach you? Is it through your website?
Taryn: Yes. It’s through my website. There’s a contact page and people can just send an email through the contact page.
Expert Author 411: Okay. Great. Taryn’s website is tripwishlist.com and that information will be in the show notes from today’s episodes so you’ll be able to see that. I believe there is also a link to your book on the website, correct, Taryn?
Expert Author 411: Okay. Great. So they can purchase the book there, and I know it’s also available on Amazon as well. I can’t let you go before asking you my question which is as I mentioned I’m from the south and we never let anyone visit our home without offering them something to eat or drink. So, I’m asking all of my guests do you have a favorite dish that you’re famous for cooking or is there a favorite food or drink that you like to order when you are out with friends?
Taryn: Wow. Everybody knows I loved sweet potatoes. So baked sweet potatoes, sweet potato casserole. I mean yams. I’m known for that. But when people come to visit I like to do breakfast.
Expert Author 411: Okay.
Taryn: That’s not really a dish but that’s typically what I make when people come to visit. Now if I’m out and there’s some sweet potatoes on the menu I have to try them out.
Expert Author 411: So you probably have tried sweet potato fries, right?
Taryn: Oh yeah. I loved potato fries, sweet potato chips.
Expert Author 411: Yeah. I have a friend who if there are sweet potato fries on the menu she will always order them. Okay. Taryn, this was really great getting to know you, getting to know about your business and about your book. Is there anything else that you want to share with us?
Taryn: I think we covered a lot. I just welcome everyone to visit my site, read my blog, and follow me on social media: Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook. If anyone wants to get in touch with me, please do.
Expert Author 411: Okay. All right. Fabulous!. Thank you so much for visiting us. As I said the information on Taryn’s book and her website will be in our show notes, and we will also have a transcript of this on our website which is Expertauthor411.com. Thank you everyone for listening in and we will see you on the next show.
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