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Travel Writing: Thrills, Spills, Risks and Rewards

15 February 2016 | 18:00

What makes for good travel writing? How do you get into the profession? What practical, ethical and political challenges come with the job? Who are the great travel writers and what can we learn from them? Can an outsider ever fairly and accurately represent a given place, society or culture?

University of Portsmouth School of Media and Performing Arts lecturer, travel book author and foreign affairs journalist Tom Sykes and writer-photographer Alexander Sebley will explore these questions and more in their travel writing talk taking place on the 15th February in Eldon Building at 6pm.

The talk will reference their travels across four continents and their recent collaboration on the upcoming Bradt Guidebook to Ivory Coast. They also offer practical advice on the craft and explore the various sub-genres of travel writing from guidebooks to service articles to narrative travelogues.

Tom Sykes’s travelogues and foreign affairs features have appeared in The Telegraph, New Statesman, Scotsman, New Internationalist, London Magazine, Red Pepper and New African. He is the co-editor of the successful No Such Thing As a Free Ride? series of travel anthologies, the first of which was named the Observer‘s Travel Book of the Month. He is the author of the Bradt Guide to Ivory Coast and is working on a travel-inflected novel entitled Blood is Not Thicker in Manila. Tom teaches travel writing, amongst other genres, in his capacity as Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Portsmouth.

Living in London, Alexander Sebley is a writer, photographer and label manager who has worked for VICE, the BBC, Bradt Travel Guides.

Travel Writing: Thrills, Spills, Risks & Rewards is a part of Portsmouth BookFest, an event taking place all through February. When on the BookFest eventbite page, please click ‘Get Tickets’ to find our Travel writing talk second on the list. This talk is FREE to all however some of the other events in this list are not. 

The talk, presented by Tom Sykes and Alexander Sebley, will take place at 6pm on Monday the 15th February in Eldon building lecture theatre 1.10. There will be a Q&A session during the talk plus a FREE drinks reception afterwards to talk to Tom and Alexander about their travels as well as purchase any of their books if you’d like to do so.


15 February 2016
Event Category:


Eldon Building
Winston Churchill Avenue
Portsmouth, Hampshire PO1 2DJ United Kingdom

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