Salman Rashid

Travel writer, Fellow of Royal Geographical Society

Travel writers’ connections with locale

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It is ideal to live in a place for extended period of time to write about it. For example, visiting Herat (Afghanistan) in March 2006 for four days was enough to fall in love with this magical city. But I never came back to write of my experience. I simply had too little a feel of that city. I should have been there for at least ten days. But in Pakistan, four days in Rohri in Sindh were enough back in 1986 to write a little piece because I had read so much about this, one of our most magical cities.

If it is a ruined building, an abandoned mansion, I generally spend a full day there. But the precondition is to be left to myself. I must be alone to let my imagination work; nobody should be constantly bombarding me with banter. The same is true for battlefields, forts etc. The rule of the thumb about writing on places, therefore, is three to four days for cities and a full day for a particular building.

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posted by Salman Rashid @ 8:30 AM,

3 Comments:

At April 15, 2013 at 1:42 PM, Blogger Nayyar Julian said...

It is imperative for travel writers to get connected with locals and locale before writing. Only then they can breathe life with their words. True sir.

 
At April 15, 2013 at 2:54 PM, Anonymous Kausar Bilal said...


Hmmm...Nice guideline for tourists and travel writers. Thanks for sharing it.

 
At May 12, 2013 at 8:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Swot up on geography, politics, culture, and basic facts." It's easy to get complacent for readers from your country, where everyone knows about your references, but what about foreigners?

Claire

 

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My Books

Deosai: Land of the Gaint - New

The Apricot Road to Yarkand


Jhelum: City of the Vitasta

Sea Monsters and the Sun God: Travels in Pakistan

Salt Range and Potohar Plateau

Prisoner on a Bus: Travel Through Pakistan

Between Two Burrs on the Map: Travels in Northern Pakistan

Gujranwala: The Glory That Was

Riders on the Wind

Books at Sang-e-Meel

Books of Days