Travel writer and non-fiction author Jay Artale played an important part in HULF 2019, sharing our news via the HULF Twitter account, from different countries around the world. You see, Jay’s a digital nomad, travelling the world while working online. We’re delighted to announce that for next year’s event, she’ll be in Hawkesbury Upton in person. Meanwhile, she shares her thoughts on what it means to be a digital nomad and why she’s glad to be adding Hawkesbury Upton to her itinerary in 2020.
Location Independent Digital Nomad
If being a digital nomad was a cult, then Arthur C. Clarke would be our guru.
When I was two years old, he predicted developments in communication would create a world independent of distance where we could conduct our business from anywhere in the world—and that’s what I do.
As long as I have a computer and internet connection it doesn’t matter where I write my travel guides or books about travel writing and self-publishing. My location is immaterial.
Since abandoning my corporate career to become location independent I’ve wallowed in the digital advances Arthur C. Clarke predicted, but sometimes it means I miss out on coveted opportunities.
The 2019 #HULitFest
In the past, I’ve scanned literary and book festivals with no more than a passing interest, but the 2019 Hawkesbury Upton Literary Festival line-up changed that.
- The Voicing Dementia talk, non-fiction reading, and travel-related panel discussion piqued my interest.
- The adult workshops for how to write for magazines, free writing, and writing poetry, grabbed my attention.
- The poetry slam sealed the deal—I had to attend.
Since writing my poetic memoir, A Turbulent Mind about my mother’s journey with Alzheimers, slamming those Hillaire Belloc inspired poems has been on my bucket list. Here was my opportunity to fill that quest—but my travel schedule had other plans.
Although I couldn’t participate in person, physical distance wasn’t going to stop me from being part of this community of words. So in lieu of attendance, I offered Debbie remote support to spread the word about the 2019 lineup and event via Twitter.
Ostensibly I was getting the word out to encourage book lovers to travel locally to Hawkesbury Upton for this one-day event. But our tweets also showcased the speakers to a global audience and helped them grow their reader-base.
Using words to move people into action or reaction is a compulsion of mine.
Finding a Niche
I use my Bodrum Peninsula website and travel guides to encourage visitors to get off the beaten path and discover a country that doesn’t deserve the negative press it receives. I use my indie publishing website, podcast and travel writing books to inspire travelers to write and self publish, and my personal blog to share my travel adventures.
It’s an erratic collection of content meant to serve different roles to different audiences, and I think that’s why I was drawn to HULitFest.
When what we write doesn’t neatly fit into the confines of a single niche, we have to create a platform to deliver it. I’ve done that virtually through my websites, and it’s what Debbie does with her annual Literary Festival.
The 2020 #HULitFest
I’m looking forward to attending the 2020 Hawkesbury Upton Literary Festival in person. Fingers crossed my application to host a travel writing workshop is accepted. [It will be! What a great addition to the HULF workshop programme! – Ed.] I’m also limbering up my poetry slam muscles to bare my soul.
The world has shrunk to that point Arthur C. Clarke predicted. It’s called the internet.
It’s where we communicate and reach people no matter their location. But this online world has exploded to such an extent, it’s become an information suburb where virtual connections can make us feel disconnected.
It’s just as well physical destinations still have a place in our world, and each year authors and book lovers commute to Hawkesbury Upton to share their love and appreciation of the written word to communicate with their fellow human beings, face-to-face.
About Jay Artale
Jay Artale abandoned her corporate career to become a digital nomad and full-time writer. She’s an avid blogger and a nonfiction author helping travel writers and travel bloggers achieve their self-publishing goals. Join her at Birds of a Feather Press where she shares tips, advice, and inspiration to writers with an independent spirit.
Connect with Jay on social media here: