Help Me Win a Travel Writing Scholarship to SE Asia? Pretty Please?

Update, May 15, 2012: My entry is not on the scholarship shortlist.

On Friday, I sent in my application to the 2012 World Nomads Travel Writing Scholarship. This is a six-week, paid opportunity to travel and write on assignment guided by three established travel writers in Singapore, Bali and Malaysia.

Winning this scholarship will be my dream come true. Please help me get closer to my goal by reading, commenting on and sharing my scholarship entry.

If you’re a reader of this blog, you will notice that my entry refers to the same Korean spa trip I described in my last blog post. Thanks for being my guinea pigs 🙂 The essay restricted the entrants to using 2,000 characters – including spaces. So publishing that first draft here, seeing it online and getting some distance from it was critical for me in determining the salient points to include in the many re-drafts and in the last draft you’ll read in my final entry. Thanks to the folks who commented on and read it here and across the interwebs.

Let me interrupt myself! And while I’m at it, I’d like to thank to my readers and fellow bloggers who’ve taken time to read or comment on my posts in the past few months. It pleases me to no end to hear your comments, see your retweets and to open my dashboard every morning to see you’ve stopped by from your laptops and phones all around the world. I’m very humbled by the warm reception. Many thanks.

Back to the story!

As a part of the entry, I also wrote an 800-character personal essay about why I am the best candidate for the job and what the opportunity would mean to me. For some reason, that essay does not appear in the public version of my scholarship entry. But I thought I’d include it here because this short essay explains a lot about me, why I’m doing this blog, and why I love travel and writing. Please enjoy!

Through my writing, I want readers to appreciate the many ways of living in and looking at the world. Raised in a Filipino home near Chicago, I saw life through the lenses of many immigrants, and I questioned why the spectrum of the American experience was so full of gray.

Travel quenches my thirst for nuanced answers. Though I find few that satisfy, I become more at ease with uncertainty and discover joy in complexity. As a traveler, I’ve learned to adapt and push my boundaries whether at home or abroad.

Winning this scholarship will be an amazing opportunity to listen to the tongues of southeast Asia and to unpack these stories in well-chosen detail. With my mentors’ guidance and critique, I will shape my work into writing that will connect deeply with readers and win their trust.

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3 thoughts on “Help Me Win a Travel Writing Scholarship to SE Asia? Pretty Please?

    • Thank you for the pingback!

      As to the questions you pose in your article, you know how I feel. I write for two reasons: One, so that my reader may benefit – whether a quick chuckle, a tip on a great restaurant or a provocative opinion. Two, I write for myself, for the process of writing and for my own learning and improvement. The latter of these two reasons I will fulfill no matter if anyone reads. Attaining spiritual success or fulfilling my Personal Legend, as Paulo Coehlo put it in The Alchemist, is why I write.

      I look forward to reading more of your posts.

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