Part 1: Introduction

This is the story of how I wrote the travel and philosophy book, The Jolly Pilgrim – a two-year, round-the-world travelogue extravaganza, taking place across 60,000 miles, 24 countries, five continents and two years. It features a stint working in a drag club, a four-month period studying the Abrahamic scriptures and a two-month spell as a hermit in South America.

It was a spontaneous rather than a planned project, and I’d never previously written a book.


A warning for those thinking of writing a travel book

Writing books is not easy. Writing this one required going around the world, looking into as many corners as I could and tearing through mind-expanding reading material for two years. It then it required getting outside of a lot of mental boxes, and staying out of them, in circumstances where lots of people seemed determined to shoot me down.

Even when all that creative work was done, polishing the manuscript took another 19 months. Selling and marketing it, a further year. Organising my life to achieve all this was an enormous undertaking, which tested my emotional resilience to the limit.

However, the end result was well worth the effort and enormously satisfying, so if you fancy a challenge …

The blow-by-blow account described in the following pages includes links to blogs posted at the time (mainly from Part 4, which begins to describe the actual drafting process), that contain further details.


Next: Conceiving the Idea >


Praise for the end product:

The eloquence of Peter’s prose kept me engaged throughout his journey.
- Alexandra Wilks, Literature Editor, The Stag


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