Applying 30 years in journalism and 20 years as a travel writer and editor to solving some of the toughest questions facing writers, PR pros, destinations and travel companies. My goal is to give travel professionals and publishers more tools — from finding new ways to tell a story to tapping into fresh markets  —  for inspiring travelers to get up, get out and experience what the world has to offer.

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When you need a more personal approach to the practicalities of travel and the business of travel, consulting is the way to go. But when you need to inspire an audience with storytelling that transports, offers actionable takeaways and changes the way we think about the tired cliches of travel, you need a keynote speaker with experience and personality. Speaking clients have included the Hawaii Tourism Conference, the Public Relations Society of America, Blog World’s New Media Expo, Travel Alaska, TBEX (Travel Bloggers Exchange), the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association and the AAA Great Vacations Expo, among others.

Keynote topics include:

  • “Your owned media sucks: Why and how to make it better.”
  • “Using reality (and fun) to expand your destination’s audience.”
  • “What every traveler can learn from a guy in Bermuda shorts.”

Email here for more details.

On LinkedIn:

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CONSULTING / workshops

Truly great travel storytelling isn’t an outdated concept — in fact, it’s become more important than ever for publications trying to raise the level of engagement, and for tourism, marketing and travel companies that are turning to “owned media” on their public sites. Having taught travel storytelling to thousands through conferences, classes and workshops, I’m in a unique position to help you raise the level of quality and (to use an overused term) authenticity of your content, as well as to look for new angles for destinations that aren’t just another well-beaten path. For more details, email here

  • Consulting: How to approach owned media and how to raise the bar — and engagement. 
  • Workshops: Travel writing for PR, Tourism and Marketing professionals.

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“This guy is the real deal. He is so knowledgeable, so funny, so smart, so on top of the trends. I was travel editor at The Associated Press for many years and met him a few times over the years at industry events, while following his work online. I can’t say enough good things about him. Honestly, there are a lot of folks you meet in the travel industry who are poseurs. Spud is the guy who actually knows what he’s talking about, and he’s got an engaging, fun way about him to boot.”

Beth Harpaz, Editor of SUM, City University of New York

“Spud is an excellent Keynote Speaker! He has spoken at our events several times over the years including a keynote in Stockholm. He worked hard to customize his presentation for our group. He kept the audience interested from beginning to end with a combination of great actionable information and humor.”

rick calvert, CEO & cofounder, Blogworld & new media expo

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writing / editing

Words have never been more important than right now for cutting through the noise, engaging audiences and building credibility. During nearly two decades as a travel writer and editor, I’ve picked up 13 Lowell Thomas Awards, the national standard for travel journalism. I bring that experience and those skills to every job, no matter the size of the assignment or the topic. For more details, email here