National Geographic Traveler looks for writers

National Geographic Traveler and Travcoa, the leader in luxury and exotic travel, announced today they have teamed up to search for the best new travel writer from among college students across the U.S. and Canada.
The goal of the “Next Great Travel Writer” Contest is to discover the most talented journalist from among the entrants. The prize will be the trip of a lifetime—a journey to Mongolia in July 2008 on assignment for National Geographic Traveler with Editor-in-Chief Keith Bellows, courtesy of Travcoa.

As part of the experience, the winner will write a feature story from the trip edited by Bellows and designed by the magazine’s staff, which will be published on National Geographic Traveler magazine’s Web site.

To enter, students are asked to write and submit a 300-word essay about a travel experience that moved, excited or changed them. The contest begins July 1, and essays are due by December 31, 2007, at 5 p.m. PST. Rules and information can be found at www.travelwritercontest.com.

“One of the joys of my job is encouraging people of all generations to travel,” said Jerre Fuqua, president of First Choice Expeditions and Travcoa. “We want this contest to inspire college students to think about, and be curious about, the world in which they live, and we hope our partnership with National Geographic Traveler will help motivate the next generation of travelers.”

“I’m genuinely looking for that next great talent,” said Bellows. “At the magazine, we strive to offer fresh perspectives, so of course I’m going to spend time helping young writers who can bring something new to the table.”

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Bellows will spend 10 days on the road with the winning student next July, teaching her or him what it takes to become a professional travel writer. He will help the writer prepare for the trip, give pointers on reporting and research and help develop the story while in the field. Travcoa will give the pair exclusive access to and the most authentic view of one of the most awe-inspiring destinations in the world, Mongolia, throughout the Escorted Journey.

The “Next Great Travel Writer” Contest begins July 1, and essays are due by December 31, 2007, at 5 p.m. PST. For information, visit www.travelwritercontest.com.
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