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By Shandra Keesecker-Rivero
“I wish you’d sit down and write about it,” begins Joe Houchin, retired travel writer and present day journalist for the Sonoran Resort blog here in Puerto Peñasco. We were meeting over a cup of coffee in the spacious restaurant of the Sonoran Sea, next to the resort’s lobby adorned with a smattering of plush couches beckoning from the other side of the glass windows. We had met to discuss the Sonoran Resorts’ latest challenge, the “Best Job in the World Travel Writer Contest.”
Following the success of the Resorts’ earlier “Why I Love Rocky Point Photo Contest,” which received nearly 600 entries, Jim Ringquist, Director of Sales & Marketing for the Sonoran Resorts, came up with the idea to turn a picture that tells a thousand words into…well, a thousand words. The writing contest, which began on Aug. 10th has already received about 15 – 20 stories so far – summaries of which can be found on the contest site – and will be open for entries through Oct. 10th.
After living in the area for the past 11 years, I am all about telling stories of experiences from around Rocky Point – but what is it that will catch the judges’ fancy? Looking for some additional guidance, I asked Joe, “What are you looking for?” (Or, in order to not end the question with a preposition… “For what art thou looking”?)
“In a story, I want someone to take me there. Tell me about the evening you spent in Rocky Point with no particular plans and then ended up falling in love, or tried salsa dancing for the first time near the malecón,” he exclaimed. “When I’m done with the story – or any travel story for that matter – I ask, ‘Did it make me want to go to that destination? Try that experience?’ I want to taste, feel, envision, and duplicate the author’s experience while I’m reading.”
Prizes will be awarded to the top three entries of the Writing Contest. While First and Second will be selected by a panel of judges, a third entry (from the remaining 8 of the top 10 selections) will be chosen by members of Sonoran Resorts’ management and sales team. This is where the “Best Job in the World” part comes in. Prizes include a 2 week stay in a luxury condo at the beachside Sonoran Sky and the “job” is to write five articles about your stay (think journal), and you will be featured as a Guest Travel Writer in the Sonoran Resort Blog.
So, writers – start your engines and warm-up those keyboards! Grab a pen and jot down some thoughts on that napkin with the ring silhouette, honoring your last margarita, cerveza or agua at one of your favorite seaside spots, and be sure to “take us there” through your words.
For full contest information, visit: Travel Writing Contest “Best Job in the World”