Southeast Asia 2012 Travel Writing Scholarship

 

Entries close April 23rd, 2012 at 2pm AEST (UTC +10).

Do you want to be a published travel writer?

This year we decided to shake things up a bit and instead of choosing just one country for our scholarship…we’ve decided to send you off to three different countries in Southeast Asia! Once on the ground, you’ll have the opportunity to see for yourself life beyond the banana pancake trail, and get to know Southeast Asia from the local perspectives, through the eyes of three amazing writers.

Here’s the triple-dip deal:

First you’ll head off to Singapore to go on assignment for five days under the mentorship of Rough Guides writer Richard Lim to review and update ‘The Rough Guide to Singapore’.

Then you’ll fly to Bali and meet up with Stuart McDonald, founder of Travelfish, the online travel guide to Southeast Asia, before heading off on six days of cultural insight and adventure in Indonesia.

For the last leg of the scholarship, you will be whisked off to Malaysia for a food odyssey through Kuala Lumpur and Penang with former local and cookbook author of award winning hsa*ba Burmese cookbook, Tin Cho Chaw, to explore how cuisine shapes the lives of Malaysians.

Important Dates

 

**You need to be available between June 18th – July 6th, 2012 to participate on the assignment.**

 

 

April 23    Submission deadline  

April 24-May 11    Judging preliminary shortlist

May 11-16    Finalists shortlist

May 17    Winner confirmed and announced 

May 17-June 17    Trip preparation

June 18     Arrive in Singapore

June 19-20    Meet Richard Lim – Singapore, shadow for two days 

June 21-22    Solo assignment for two days

June 23    Meet up with Richard, feedback on assignment etc. 

June 24-30    Indonesia: Culture & Adventure

July 1-July 5    Malaysia: Food Odyssey

July 6    Depart

August 20    Copy deadline

Singapore:  On assignment with Rough Guides

 

Photo courtesy of Rough Guides

Your Rough Guides brief

* We’ll fly you to Singapore from your country of residence. 

* After spending two days learning the ropes with mentor Richard Lim, you will have a chance to explore this bustling, progressive city for two days on your own. In this time, you will research, review and update essential travel information for ‘The Rough Guide to Singapore’, including accommodation, bars & restaurants, cultural sights and activities, tours, and transport, as well as searching out those local secrets that travellers want to read about. On your final day, you will meet back up with Richard to go over your work together.

* Your mentor will be at hand to offer guidance, but essentially this is your assignment; you will travel on your own for this part of the journey so you must be comfortable travelling solo. Richard will assign you a specific area based on your travel experience.

* Your work will feature in the new edition of The Rough Guide to Singapore’, placing your foot firmly in the door of the elusive travel writing industry!

 

Photo courtesy of Rough Guides

 

Mentor, Richard Lim

Find out more about what you can expect from your Rough Guides mentorship.

Read an interview with Richard Lim about life as a travel writer.

Indonesia: Culture & Adventure

 

 

Photo courtesy of Emanuele Siracusa

Explore a whole different side of Bali. Venture off the grid to the remote village of Sidemen – live like the locals live, experience firsthand their coconut and salt industries and delve into the Balinese belief in “black magic” (need a hex on your ex? you’re in the right place).

To get your blood pumping, you’ll then hike up to the top of Gunung Agung, an active volcano, and the highest point on the island, followed up with a refreshing dip in the surf, with lessons at a surf camp in West Bali (yes…you must be comfortable in the water!).

You’ll also have some free time to explore on your own and to sit down with Stuart of Travelfish to pick his brain about online publishing in the travel space.

 

 

Photo courtesy of Travelfish

 

Malaysia: Food Odyssey

 

 

Photo courtesy of hsa*ba

Malaysian cuisine is comprised of three distinct cultures: Indian, Malay and Chinese – and the fusion recipes that make it so uniquely Malaysian. On this portion of your scholarship journey, you will be sampling it all, and learning about the process, stories and people behind the famous dishes (picky eaters, you’ve been warned!).

You will meet up with Cho of hsa*ba (with a blog that translates into “please eat”, bring an empty stomach) in Kuala Lumpur and eat your way around the night markets before checking out the KL fine dining scene. You will also join a local food blogger and her Makan Club for a typical night out in Kuala Lumpur to experience what’s happening in KL’s food scene.

Finally, head up to Penang, the renowned food mecca of Malaysia. You’ll get a hands-on cooking lesson and learn how to plate up some of your favorite dishes, wander through the endless wet market stalls, and visit a durian plantation (to sample the delicacies, of course!).

 

Photo courtesy of hsa*ba

What you’ll need to produce

Along with your work on the ‘Rough Guide to Singapore’, you will be required to keep a daily travel journal on WorldNomads.com (no less than 200 words per daily entry) to share your adventures through Southeast Asia. Your journal should be completed no later than two weeks from returning from your trip.

Who can apply

* This opportunity is open to students, emerging and non-professional writers and lovers of travel looking for a career change.

* The scholarship is open to all nationalities, however, you must have a high degree of proficiency in written English.

* The opportunity is designed to give you a taste of what it’s like to be a travel writer on the road, so you must be comfortable doing some travel on your own.

* Minimum age 18 by the date the scholarship application close (April 23, 2012)

* A current passport with at least six months before expiry

* You must be available as per the dates set out. Please note these dates are not changeable in anyway, you must be available for the entire assignment.

* You should be an exceptional writer with a lust for adventure travel, a desire to experience new cultures (and eat them!)and above all, a burning desire to become a professional travel writer!

Watch our video for more eligibility information and application tips!

What constitutes a professional travel writer?

Essentially this is a ‘learning opportunity’ for someone who is looking for an introduction into the travel writing industry and importantly keen to be mentored.

As a guide, for the purposes of the opportunity, we would consider you to be professional travel writer if you have been published regularly in newspapers, travel magazines or travel journals. We would also consider you to be a professional travel writer if you derive more than 25% of your income from travel writing.

If you have had a few stories published, or keep a regular travel blog then we would not consider this professional.

We would also like to further clarify that a professional writer of any sort (travel writer or otherwise) is not eligible to apply if they derive more than 25% of their income from writing.

Please consider the spirit of the program which is intended to help those with a burning desire to be a professional travel writer and need some help getting started.

Apply now

If you want it, you’ve got to show it. To apply you need to:

1. Write. Craft a 2000 character or less (about 500 words) travel focused essay based on a personal experience around one of the following themes;

a. ‘Understanding a Culture through Food’

b. ‘A Local Encounter that Changed my Life’

c. ‘Seeing the World through Others Eyes’

d. ‘Giving Back on the Road’

It’s up to you to convince our judging panel through your writing that you have the spirit of adventure and passion for travel writing to be chosen for this scholarship. We will be looking for:

– great descriptive ability
– strong eye for detail
– ability to uncover and tell a compelling story
– excellent spelling and grammar and a knack for avoiding clichés

Check out our video blog with Rough Guide editor Clare Currie for some writing tips.

2. Complete an entry form which includes contact details and a maximum 800 character (about 200 words) essay on why you should be chosen and what the opportunity will mean for you. Your answer will provide considerable weight in the judging process.

3. One entry per person.

4. The entry must be submitted in English.

 

 

Applications close April 23, 2012 at 2pm (AEST)

 

CONDITIONS OF ENTRY – Please read before applying!

Click to read the terms and conditions of this scholarship

 

The recipient of the Scholarship, along with the shortlist of best entries will be published on the WorldNomads.com website on May 17th, 2012.

Travel Video Documentary Scholarship 2011 – Arnhem Land, Australia

Go on assignment to the Arnhem Land, far north Australia and have your doco broadcast on Nat Geo Adventure!

Applications close June 16, 2pm (Australian Eastern Standard Time)
Kick start your documentary career by going on assignment to one of the most remote Yolngu Aboriginal communities in Arnhem Land (far north Australia), and be immersed in traditional Yolngu Aboriginal knowledge and understanding of the land, sea and animals.

Flying to the Northern Territory with Virgin Blue,you will take part in a special project withWorld Expeditions, working alongside the indigenous Yolngu Aboriginal rangers to restore sea country by removing and cataloging marine debris, the by-product of South East Asia’s fishing industry.

Under the mentorship of documentary producer Trent O’Donnell (who filmed our Positive Footprints series screened on Nat Geo Adventure Channel)you will find your story and create your own short documentary.

It will then be considered for broadcast on Nat Geo Adventure! That’s right – the holy grail documentary makers work their whole lives to achieve!

Photo: Cameron Herweynen, winner 2007 Travel Photography Scholarship

Your assignment brief

Join a 7 day  World Expeditions‘ community project in North East Arnhem Land, working alongside the indigenous Yolngu Aboriginal rangers to restore sea country by removing and cataloging marine debris, the by-product of South East Asia’s fishing industry.

The virtually pristine  coastline is facing a significant environmental threat from marine debris washed in on the ocean currents. Discarded fishing nets, rubber footwear, empty bottles and plastic bags are all carried by these currents from throughout the South East Asian region and deposited on the Arnhem Land Coast. All of this waste is a major threat to the wildlife, as animals get caught up in the nets and choke on the plastic rubbish.

Not only will we be using high-tech techniques for dealing with this modern problem, but also relying on and learning from Traditional Yolngu Aboriginal knowledge and understanding of the land, sea and animals. The group may break into mens and womens groups to share in the gender-specific aspects of culture and lifestyle. Men can learn traditional hunting and fishing and women can be involved in traditional bush medicine, bush food and handicrafts.

This project aims to work alongside and under the direction of Yolngu Aboriginal Rangers from Dhimurru and Laynhapuy Land Management as we together collect, catalogue and dispose of the marine rubbish.

Working with the Yolngu people under the mentorship of Trent O’Donnell you will find your story and film your own short documentary.

  

What’s the deal?

* We’ll fly you to the Northern Territory, Australia with Virgin Blue from your country of residence.

* You need to be available to be in Australia from September 3-9, 2011 to participate in the project.

* Under the mentorship of Trent O’Donnell you will shoot a video documentary about the experience.

* You will keep a daily diary about your time on the trip and upload this plus pictures you’ve taken to your WorldNomads.com travel journal.

* You will edit together your 5-10 minute documentary and submit it to WorldNomads.com within 2 months of your return.

Watch Mo Soliman, our 2010 winner talk about his experience

Who can apply?

* Any non-professionals can apply – this is open to film students, or anyone who’s trying to build a career in documentary making!

* Minimum age 18 with a current, valid passport and you must available as per the dates set out. Please note these dates are not changeable in anyway.

* You may be a resident of any country.

* You should be a mad-keen auteur with a lust for adventure and burning desire to be a documentary maker.

* You must be fit and healthy as moderate levels of physical work are involved, and happy to camp for 7 days.

Am I eligible? What makes a non-professional?

This is a grey area, and very tricky to put measures around. We appreciate documentary filmmaking is a difficult industry to crack and there are a lucky few who can count themselves as a professional full time documentary maker.

This scholarship is very much about the mentorship opportunity, and the judging panel will be selecting someone who they feel will most benefit from the learning opportunity. So if you have already been commissioned to make documentaries or have had your work broadcast on numerous occasions, it is unlikely you will be selected.

You will be asked to outline your experience to date in the submission process, and it will be the judging panel who decides who is most suitable based on their video and written component. So whilst we are not stipulating exactly what does and does not constitute a professional, think about the spirit of the mentorship program and whether you think you would make the most ideal candidate.

Apply now

If you want it, you’ve got to show it. To apply you need to:

1. Compile a maximum 3 minute video documentary in English based around the theme; ‘Local Encounters’. Remember, 3 minutes maximum means that 3:01 videos will be ignored. In a professional video environment, you need to be able to deliver up to the exact time, we’re no different in this case. Do not go over !

Your ‘local encounter’ may be from your travels or somewhere closer to home. You should explore how this encounter changed your perspective on the world. The theme is open to interpretation, so be creative! The documentary may be compiled from previous travel videos you’ve shot.

It’s up to you to convince our judging panel through your video that you have the spirit for adventure and passion for filmmaking to be chosen for this scholarship. Our judging panel will be looking for;

* The ability to convey a strong narrative within a short time-frame
* Originality
* A visually engaging story
* A candidate whose passion for documentary filmmaking makes them an obvious choice to benefit from this professional mentorship opportunity.

We strongly recommend you look at the previous winners (below) to give you an idea of the quality we are looking for. Entries compiled solely of still shots will not be considered, you need to demonstrate your skill with the moving image.

2. Upload your video : Go to Youtube.com to upload your video

3. Add your video to Worldnomads.com: Create a journal and fill in the entry form, then follow the simple instructions to upload your video into the post. In under 200 words tell us about your video;

– What inspired your subject matter?

– What has been your documentary experience to date?

– What is your ambition as a documentary maker and what would winning this scholarship mean to you?

You will be judged on what you write as much as your video submission, convince us you are a worthy candidate!

4. Additionally, we will be offering a Nomad’s Community Choice Award for the entrant who receives the most combined Facebook ‘Likes’ and Twitter ‘Tweets’ for their video on their submitted journal application page. The winner will receive a digital video camera worth AUD$2500! (This award will have no bearing on the scholarship judging). So get your submissions in early and start gathering support !

One entry per person (no longer than 3 minutes, again remember, entries that exceed this will not be considered)


Watch our 2010 winner’s & shortlisted documentaries

Watch our 2009 winner’s & shortlisted documentaries

Entries close June 16, 2011, 2pm (Australian Eastern Standard Time)