perceptive travel partyDespite the image of the happy freelance travel writer jetting around the world and scampering through interesting exotic places, the reality is that we spend way too much time typing and gazing into a computer monitor. Otherwise we’d never get paid. We may communicate with 50 people a day by e-mail and phone, but real face-to-face communication like you have in an office environment is all too uncommon.

So as the editor of Perceptivehungary tourism Travel, I made it my goal to set up some real live socializing when I came to my old haunt of New York City last week for a conference. Fortunately I got some help from the generous folks at Hungary Tourism (including Maria pictured here) and Monarchia Winery. I stopped at Monarchia when I was in Hungary recently and got to sit down in their cellar with their award-winning winemaker Pok Tamas. They are one of the few that does a sizable export business, so we got them to educate a room full of travel and wine writers on what comes out of that country’s vineyards.

jaunted travel We had a mixed bag of writers representing a slew of different websites and magazines. In no particular order, we had bloggers Kelly Amabile from Gadling, Claire and Paul from Jaunted (pictured here), Nicole from Globorati, Tom Meyers from Eurocheapo, and others. Max and Kent from the fine site GoNomad were there as was fellow Imbibe writer Amy Zavatto and uncooked.tv director John Gottfried (with me up at the top). Despite all us alternative types there, we even got some people who write for Travel & Leisure to come by and sip some Tokaji Aszu.

tony perrottetIt was a treasure trove of authors too: Bruce Northam (Globetrotter Dogma), Tony Perrottet (The Naked Olympics), Ayun Halliday (No Touch Monkey!), Marie Javins (Stalking the Wild Dik-dik), and Robert Reid (loads of Lonely Planet books). All of them have written/will write for Perceptive Travel, so sign up for the newsletter on the Perceptive Travel home page to keep updated with new stories.

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Tim Leffel is author of five travel books, including Travel Writing 2.0, and A Better Life for Half the Price, on living abroad. He is editor of Perceptive Travel webzine and this blog. He splits his time between Guanajuato, Mexico and Tampa Bay. See his writing portfolio, awards, and links to his books at TimLeffel.com.