Interview with Patricia Schultz
by Sandy Linneman
Chosen by FORBES as one of the twenty five most influential women in travel, Patricia Schultz continues to write about her passion for and curiosity about the world. Beginning in 2003 with the publication of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die (over three million copies in print and translated into 25 languages) and then 1,000 Places to See in the United States and Canada Before You Die, she invented the idea of travel book as both wish list and practical guide.
With a second edition of 1,000 Places, she added additional countries, more pages and entries, and over 600 full color photographs. An engaging and interactive companion app for the iPad, released simultaneously with the book, offers a fresh take on the world we live in now, enabling both armchair travelers and savvy
globetrotters to get a taste of the world’s current riches and plan their next trip.
In response to questions about her work, Patricia replied to the following:
How did your upbringing influence your choice of career?
“I was born and raised in Beacon, New York, a small town in the mid-Hudson Valley, by parents who worked always, traveled little, and understood that education was everything. I got a fine academic education, but to me a week on the road was worth a semester back at school. In their own way, they recognized that, and were extremely supportive in every dalliance I took in the years following college—and well after that—when I’m sure they were hoping I would accept a well-paying job, settle down and do them proud. But they understood that travel was my passion.”
What route did you take to pursue your dream?
“Discovering a living could be made from such an interest involved writing articles and guidebooks for many years. Having information gained from first-person reports from colleagues and individual travelers, plus material researched from tourist agencies, I concluded it was a topic needing to be documented.”
Why did you choose to explore your insights in book form?
“My curiosity about the inherent beauty of the world and the discovery it promised was a natural fit. The common denominator I chose was a simple one: that each place express upon the visitor some sense of the earth’s magic, integrity, wonder, and legacy. And, sometimes places that were ‘just plain fun’ needed to be recognized.”
When did you realize you should begin a revision?
“The ink was still damp when I began thinking of what I wanted to add and what changes I wanted to make—things are forever changing in travel.”
What is the advantage of the 1,000 P laces app added to this second edition?
“The app has the full content of the book, 1000 full-color photos and Google maps. It will create a community of passionate travelers who can count the places they’ve seen and those they’d love to visit, with the chance to post tips, experiences and to interact with fellow travelers, asking for and exchanging suggestions as well as posting opinions. As a support for the book, the app is a companion piece providing a modern technology aid to assist the reader.”
And finally, could you add a question of your own and answer it?
“What is a simple thing that any traveler can do to enhance his or her experience?
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