I have received the Gold award for Guidebook of the Year in the Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Competition, which is presented by the Society of American Travel Writers Foundation. The competition is judged by faculty members of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication. It is considered by many, including me, to be the highest honor the travel writing industry bestows.
The book that won is my guide to Walt Disney World, Universal, and Orlando (right) that I wrote about on this website when it was released. The next edition comes out this fall.
I previously won the Gold a few years ago for the other destination for which I write an annual guidebook, London.
Writing these books means a lot of footwork, a lot of hotel-hopping, a lot of dinners alone, countless hours at a computer, and a lot of sweating over the details for months. There are many times when I doubt it’s worth it. Life’s funny, though—sometimes you find out what’s worth it all at once, and it comes when you least expect it.
I really don’t know what to do with the information that I have now won the Lowell Thomas Award twice, one for both of the books I do. I am grateful, of course.
Thanks to the SATW, to the Frommers, and to the people who have bought my work and enjoy it.
So here’s with a photo of me at Walt Disney World when I was about 5 or 6. If I had known that one day I would be paid to go there and ride the rides, I don’t think I would have survived to 7.