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Tom Brosnahan

Best-selling guidebook author, travel writer, photographer, consultant, and professed
Internet junkie...

"I began my nonfiction writing career in 1968 as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Istanbul banging out manuscript pages for Frommer's Turkey on $5 a Day on a cheap but durable Smith-Corona portable typewriter.

"Since then my travel guidebooks for Berlitz, Frommer's and Lonely Planet have sold nearly four million copies worldwide in 12 languages, and my articles and photographs have appeared in top travel periodicals in North America and Europe.

"In the early 1990s—pre-World Wide Web—I founded the Travel Info Exchange (TIE) as a travel-information BBS (dial-up bulletin board system). It won a Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Gold Award in 1994, beating out competitors with million-dollar funding. But it was still my guidebook writing that paid the bills.

"When the Internet and World Wide Web superceded BBS technology, I converted TIE to a travel information consultancy website which garnered many prestigious clients. That helped pay the bills as well.

"But then something happened to print. The pay declined, the contracts got positively confiscatory, and the editors and publishers I had so happily worked with for decades got more and more demanding and difficult to work with.

"In short, I was fed up. It just didn't make business sense to go on that way. There seemed no future for me in print.

"I noticed that the Internet had become the world's prime source for travel information, so I bit the bullet, learned a lot of new software for making websites (primarily Dreamweaver), and put over 1000 pages of Turkey Travel Planner online, followed by St Moritz Travel Planner, New England Travel Planner, SipNewEngland.com, and now FranceTravelPlanner.com, ParisTravelPlanner.com, and EgyptTravelPlanner.com.

"It took a few years, but these websites are now earning me thousands of dollars each month in exchange for part-time maintenance. I now make a good living from self-publishing on the Internet.

"'How did you do it?' is a common question I get from writer friends. I got tired of explaining how, so I set up Writer's Website Planner to provide the answers free of charge.

"I have this to say to non-fiction writers: the Internet is our liberation! We can now publish immediately to the entire world for a pittance, and make a very good living at it. Print is still useful, but it will soon be a minor part of worldwide publishing compared to the Internet."


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 Tom Brosnahan