Travel writer Sarah Tucker shares news of her latest novella – it’s timely and its titled ‘The Redundant Travel Journalist’
My book The Redundant Travel Journalist has just come out. I would say “just in time for the holidays and in all good book shops” – but, as I don’t know which shops will be open and whether anyone will be taking anything vaguely resembling a holiday, I become aware of how many social constructs surround us. Holidays are one of them. The short novel is a dystopian tale of what travel will be like post-virus, although there may never be a post-virus.
It started off as fiction, but now I’m not so sure such is the boundary between what we think could never happen and what actually occurs. The travel industry has been most vulnerable to this surreal quality of wistful creatively about envisaging a normal, or a new normal, when really the industry is well off the cliff and currently walking on air, spin and hope. We dare not look down because we know, deep down, we have fallen, and are just waiting for the thud or a branch to break the fall.
Travel editors are in overdrive about what travel will be like, although their pages are thinning as there is no advertising and no one is going anywhere (well they are, they are just doing it illegally and in their own private jets).
There are so many webinars with very cross looking travel editors being signposted on Instagram and papers are asking writers in these unprecedented times to not write in these unprecedented times, and also drop all intention of writing virtual travel stories.
They are quote: “Fucking sick of them.” Travel experts are contradicting financial experts about asking for refunds from tour operators and the idea of staycations fills people with apathy and also incredulity (will hotels be open, expensive, can I afford them and then there’s the hygiene issues).
So, I thought I would write a ‘non-fiction’ tale of what it will be like post virus. (‘non-fiction’ being ‘nothing is intentionally made up’). Although research out this week (“What day is it?” I hear you ask) has just shown that all research and advice about what travel will be like during a crisis (the 2008 financial one, for example) never comes true. So, there you have it: There has been research to disprove the value of research.
Travel has become even more bonkers and surreal than it usually is. The dream destination has turned into exactly that, the journey of a lifetime, could be the last journey you take and getting way from the crowds is more of a necessity and less of a casual ask.
But, the Brits have always been ones to take their lives in their hands and travel whilst other nationalities stay put. There just may not be the airlines to fly with, or hotels to stay in. If airlines crash, there will be no use for airports, in which case, they could turn them into socially distancing schools, where children can learn and have the sense they are going somewhere metaphorically even if they aren’t. Or can’t. Like the rest though, I live in hope.
Sarah Tucker is an award-winning travel journalist, novelist, producer and broadcaster. She has edited, produced and presented a number of radio and TV series’ as well as presenting reports for the BBC’s ‘Holiday Programme’ and anchoring ‘I Want That House’ on ITV. She is the author of best-selling novels ‘The Playground Mafia,’ ‘The Battle for Big School,’ ‘The Last Year of Being Single’ and ‘The Control Freak Chronicles.’
To buy a copy of ‘The Redundant Travel Journalist’ by Sarah Tucker for £6.99 through Amazon, click here. Tucker has also recently written ‘The Witches of Richmond’ – it is also available on Amazon for £6.99.