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Suggestions for a Traveler Character for a Fictional story

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Howdy Sarah,

I can try to help provide you with information for your traveler character.

I will answer your direct questions as follows:

what made you decide to travel the world?

I have always wanted to travel, it is just something that I needed to do. I still feel this way after ten years. The lifestyle part of it just came with time. There was not really a clear transition between not being a traveler and being a traveler, it just sort of blended together. After you do something for a certain number of years, it is just what you do.

How do you choose what country you’ll be going to next?

Just from basic feeling and that which makes sense. I try to travel in smooth, nice looking lines as I move about the globe – you know, a path that will look nice on a map – but it seldom works out this way. My path has always been – and always will be – pretty jagged.

Though I still like to travel the world by region, by big blocks of countries that are in proximity to each other.

When it comes down to it, I must say that I always plan my next move by intuition alone – by that little feeling that strikes you upon waking up in the morning.

Do you ever have to deal with tricky things like visas?

Yeah, there are occasionally administrative hurdles that need to be crossed. But this is just part of traveling.

Do you generally know much about the countries you’ve traveled to before you get there?

No, it is my impression that you can never really know much about a place until you get there.

If so, how do you prepare for your time in another country?

I am usually always in foreign countries, so I can’t say that I prepare too much. It seems as if I plan far too little. I just went to Iraq and ran out of money because I did not properly prepare. But I am still always learning how to travel.

How do you deal with money? Did you have much when you started off?

I work as I travel. So far I have worked as an archaeologist, a gardener, an English teacher, and a journalist. Now I make most of my travel funds through Vagabond Journey.com and reader contributions. I suppose you could say that I follow a “by any means necessary” style of traveling.

No, I did not save up too much for traveling before I set off.

I hope these answers help you put together your story.

Some suggestions: You can have your character end up in Kyrgyzstan by trying to take an English teaching job in China and then being transferred by the recruiting agency. You can have him get to Europe by bailing on the job and breaking his contract and having to flee the country. Just a suggestion to get the character to Kyrgyzstan by happenstance, as it is a difficult place to just end up in.

Let me know if you want any more help or have any other questions. Thanks for reading Vagabond Journey.com!

Walk Slow,

Wade

Hello, I live and travel off of the proceeds from this website, so if you like or use this information and are able, please consider making a contribution. Thank you.
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Original question

I’m a student at Illinois Wesleyan University and I’m in a fiction
writing class called “Write What You Don’t Know.” Basically, it’s
about doing research that influences your writing.

I’m working on a story about a character named Joe who decides to
travel the world. As a world traveler yourself, I was wondering if you
could help me out by answering a few questions:

1. You mention this briefly in your “About” section of your webpage,
but what made you decide to travel the world? Basically, I’m curious
as to how you chose this lifestyle.
2. How do you choose what country you’ll be going to next? Do you ever
have to deal with tricky things like visas?
3. Do you generally know much about the countries you’ve traveled to
before you get there? If so, how do you prepare for your time in
another country?
4. How do you deal with money? Did you have much when you started off?
Do you find work and people to stay with?

Basically, my biggest issues in my story so far are making it
believable that a guy can just pick up and leave the US for a few
years. I’m having my character start off by going to Kyrgyzstan,
because he’s unfortunate and ends up in countries he’s never heard of.
From there, I’m wanting him to go to roughly five other countries, but
eventually end up in Liechtenstein. Do you think that’ll work? Do you
have any tips?

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Filed under: Travel Help

About the Author:

Wade Shepard is the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. He has been traveling the world since 1999, through 76 countries. He is the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China, and contributes to Forbes, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. has written 3053 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.

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Wade Shepard is currently in: Cincinnati, Ohio, USAMap