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Karel’s letters written during travelling

Karel Kosman photo Concerning the below, yah, lets move forward. Just tell me what I need to do, cause I've got more time than you. Should I proof and improve some of the earlier stuff, when I was writing quickly and expected to proof again in the future? (Although I believe I proofed it at least once.) I assume they might start reading around there, or we can inform them that I tried harder later, but mostly with the stuff that isn't even online yet.

I farmed about 4,000+ email addresses of literary agents and approached all of them. Most of them seem to be total snobs, that they detest such an approach and wanted me to jump through a billion hoops and loops for each of them. Some responded positively. Anyway, if you're really sure there is a chance with this I'd be willing to invest the time to try it like you say. I doubt they stored my mails in their database, but worst case I can just write again from one of my other billion email addresses. It was over a year ago so I doubt they would remember my name.

Okay, just copied this above paragraph to a new section of my travel updates so that I can read it every time to remind me. For example, on some of the last updates I went into how everyone eats and wipes their hands with their bare hands, digging into communal bowls while sitting around in a circle on the floor. Everything kind of tastes like human hands and rather gross in a way. Anyway, will keep thinking about this.

So you're basically saying that my main job now is to just keep writing and take pictures? Should I start to organise the writing and go over it and fill it in with perceptive little tidbits etc, or do you want to make suggestions based on what I've written so far? Should I send you the latest updates, or proof it first? Should I read through my email correspondence and look for extra material there?

In any case I'd be happy with just a thousand Euro a month. More than that I'll just pay off debts and start setting aside as backup and for my Africa charity project, which I hope will one day be a very cool part of my travel stories. K


Thanks for the thumbs up re my picasa pics, which I just read on my mobile. Yah, not so long ago --Keta said I could be making at least a thousand bucks a month writing about my travels. Back to what I've been trying to do since I left Prague, so an ancient discussion, but she reiterated or the message sunk in that the approach has to be right. After all, she's a publisher of an online magazine, so after discussing the issue for a while we worked out a plan that she will help me get published and be like my publisher sort of and make a percentage.

At the moment she has given me some homework to go over what I've been writing since my fiasco at the Istanbul airport. Since I left Europe I have been writing a lot more because things have been a lot more exciting and much more to write about. In fact, I have continued to write since before I left Cyprus, now about two years ago, but have not been putting it up on the web, cause I simply don't have time to turn it into webpages with pics etc. Have more important things to do to generate money.

So all that is unpublished, and Keta says I can make money going backwards once I start getting published and get a bit of a following. She says that, for my stuff, she wouldn’t charge less than 2 bucks a word, which is more than times what I usually get translating, so there seems to be some serious bucks to be made here, not to mention that she said this could include spinoff royalties from other magazines who also want to publish it and then translations into other languages. She's obviously a lot more hopeful than I am, but I'm moving forward anyway. A thousand bucks a month, which seems a pessimistic minimum, is plenty for me to survive here, not to mention my other sources of income, so definitely something to pursue and we're working on it. She wants about 2,500 words from me, and teaching me how to put more feeling into it and talk about food more and my impressions of people and events around me etc., so I'm going back and trying to pepper things up a bit and fill in the gaps. Once I'm done polishing that she'll proof it, perhaps ask me a few questions, and then submit it.

I myself spent some time surfing the web a few years back and collected about 4,000 email addresses of literary agents, and approached them all with a cover letter. Got a lot of positive feedback but even more anger, saying that I have to jump through their loops and hoops or whatever. Keta says that, yah, that's how the industry works. As far as I'm concerned I've tried everything that I could think of, but obviously not the right approach, otherwise it would have worked.

She says that, once I start getting published, then things open up for me on many fronts (like references on a resume), such as sponsors who would be willing to send me their latest gadgets, and hiking boots, and super backpacks, smart phones, mobile phone and wifi signal boosters, portable solar panels… just to mention their brand once in a while when writing. So, yah, getting excited about it. It's near the top of my list and would love to get away from translating, or just get more picky of what type of material I accept as work (pays enough or I enjoy the subject, which happens once in a while), but she says it will take roughly six months before the ball starts moving after I submit it., hmm, I'm actually considering it! Thanks for the thumbs up mate. :)


Heh heh, after taking a peak at my latest Picasa update Jens wrote, repeating what he's been saying a long time that I could make money from this. I wrote him a long letter about what we were doing at the moment and actually moving forward with it. Think he'll get excited about it too. But at the very end he mentioned, with a little smiley, that this domain is available (a recent new signature I started using for the mailouts, without thinking about it much). Waddayatink? Worth the ten bucks a year? Pretty easy to remember. But if we do start publishing, at some point I expect they might want me to remove all the online content that I put up. The online content that I do have up is in the folder travel-Europe, cause I was thinking of those important keywords for monetisation purposes (actually someone just approached me yesterday to put an ad up on one of those pages), but I'm no longer traveling in Europe only, am I? But don't think it would be so beneficial to take down all those pages and move them to a new domain, although I've been comtemplating that for quite some time. Or perhaps just start with a single page and see where it goes?? Or something to consider in the future? 10 bucks a year won't kill me, but I already got about 6 domains, although none with travel in the name. Anyway, just a thought. Oh yah, did you know mom has me as "the goof" as my name next to me email? I actually like that word.


Yo, responding to your last email again. I wouldn't be charging for the newsletter but Keta was talking about getting my travel stories published in online, and eventually, offline magazines, which make their money from travel related advertising, which is a big industry. Boots and backpacks and all that, as you say (and of course my own sponsors for additional gravy). Perhaps subscriptions charged by the offline/printed magazines, but still most of the revenues always comes from advertising. People who sit in an office and dream of escaping like I have. So the reading would probably be free on the online mags. Anyway, will let Keta decide how to go about it, but will forward your suggestion to her. I basically tried your approach I think, but the time it takes to generate enough traffic to make money this way takes a lot of effort, since it is a very competitive industry. For a while I was doing it cause I read that google likes original text, so I was using my stories to heavily point to my translation business, to push those important keywords up in the rankings. That basically worked but, for the amount of work required to accomplish that, I found I could spend my time more productively in other areas. But I did build a good base (the stories I've already written) and now we're gonna try and take that to publishers who have had the time and resources to get a lot of traffic to their sites/mags, have the advertisers and all that, and I'm just a writer. Keta says travel writers get paid quite well precisely because of the advertising and because there are so many couped up people out there who are starving for this sort of fantasy. I just don't have the resources to compete against the travel sites and am appealled by the prospect of earning enough to survive by just writing about my travels. That would allow me and motivate me to cut the umbilical cord more and wander travel more, making my stories, and as such my life, more interesting. Although it's pretty good at the moment. Thought cycling around the world with a portable solar panel would be cool. But this helpx thing is potentially cooler, cause I immediately network with locals and get involved in interesting projects, not to mention that they house, feed, and often worship me, heh heh.

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Travel Tour Guide in Europe

Island Hopping in the Philippines

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See Karel Kosman's Articles at
Karel’s letters written during travelling
47. Making preparations for the big bike trip
46. The ONLY Thai girl I am attracted to
45. Miscellaneous letters
44. I have always felt I will be a writer one day...
43. About freelancing and travelling
42. Thai girls are like demon possessed little witches
41. Living on a mystical island of Koh Phangan in Thailand
40. From Malaysia to Thailand
39. From Laos back to Thailand
38. How to publish a book
37. Back in Thailand
36. Feeling increasingly uncomfortable here on the island in Malaysia
35. My belongings
34. Staying in Malaysia
33. About running a blog
32. A short travel update
31. Planning to publish a book about my travels
30. In Thailand, God’s hand
29. Getting ready to go to Asia. In the airport
28. Escaping from Galia’s place
27. About Bulgarians, earnings, plans
26. Starting to earn more after approaching thousands of translation agencies
25. About writing and publishing content online
24. How to find really cheap plane tickets
23. The girlfriend: would like to find THE ONE
22. Still staying in Bulgaria but planning to go to Thailand
21. Travel outline
20. About translation industry
19. About female friends
18. About computer, online marketing, translation, CAT tool
17. About blabber - waste of time. About wanting to be a writer.
16. About God
15. More about software sales
14. More travel updates
13. Staying at a pension
12. About borders etc.
11. Software sales
10. Travel update
09. Translation job industry
08. Partying is a waste of time
07. How much they pay etc.
06. Translator charges, programming etc.
05. Working as a translator and travelling
04. Travel life
03. Why NOT to cheat Google...
02. About opportunities for working as a freelancer
01. About advantages of working as a freelancer
Working While Travelling
26. Gone treeplanting (September 8, 2008)
25. First friends visiting me to Cyprus (February 29, 2008)
24. Staying in Cyprus (December 09, 2007)
23. Escaping the Cyprus heat (February 8, 2007)
22. Escape from boredom (February 8, 2007)
21. Barelling to Bodrum (November 20, 2006)
20. Staying in Stoliv, Montenegro (October 2, 2006)
19. Arriving to Montenegro (August 22, 2006)
18. Traveling through Croatia (August 9, 2006)
17. The trip begins - off to Croatia! (2006)
16. How to Live in a Caravan
15. How to Connect to Internet While Traveling
14. How to construct a caravan - Beautification
13. How to use solar panels to electrify your caravan
12. How to construct a caravan
11. Designing the caravan
10. Back to Czech - buying a travel van (April 10, 2004)
9. Mexico Trip - Off to Yosemite and Beyond (December, 2003)
8. Mexico Trip - Getting a Driver’s License (December, 2003)
7. How to Buy a Used Car (December, 2003)
6. Mexico Trip (December 14, 2003)
5. Traveling through Bulgaria (July 20 - Aug. 4, 2002)
4. Czech Republic: My Reflections
3. My life in Prague
2. My flat in Prague
1. Dream of working while travelling

Published - August 2013

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