Welcome to This Is Youth.
I’m Dan. That’s me, up there, doing some rock climbing in my home state of Colorado, USA. I’m a big climber.
I’m 26, on the quest to live an interesting life. An early-career digital journalist, on-and-off again digital nomad, and aspiring writer. Serious outdoors enthusiast, world traveler, and low-key literature nerd.
It’s an odd mix, but it works for me.
So what’s this blog about?
You could call it a travel blog.
But while most other travel blogs you’ll find on the Internet only post what I’ll call Travel Tips, my main passion is for writing and sharing quality, interesting — and TRUE — Travel Stories.
Travel Tips explain where you should visit, what you should do, how you can pay for it… that sort of stuff. Travel Stories are narratives which you might find inspire you to travel yourself, or think more deeply about a person, place, or culture. When I write travel stories, I aim to capture the emotional essence of the experience — which, spoiler: very rarely involves taking photos of cocktails on a beach.
Here’s what that DOES look like:
I’ve just finished writing a book about my travels in Nepal. Entries are relatively self-contained, but there is a larger narrative. You can read chapter one here, see all entries here. I am currently seeking a publisher for this work — but in the mean time, the whole thing is available for free online.
These are my favorite pieces: narrative-driven stories from my travels across the world. They are usually longer, and far-ranging in their thinking.
- Examples: “2016 in Places“
I do sometimes write travel tips. Lots of people ask me how I travel, where I would recommend, and for tips on things like finding cheap flights. Writing this up saves me from having some repetitive conversations, and it turns out, people really like this content. Probably why that’s what most travel blogs focus on 😉
- Example: “The Top 3 Countries You Should Visit in 2017“
Any good writer needs to read a lot. Writing a review allows me to work through my thoughts on a book, and possibly introduce my audience to something new.I don’t assign scores, and my reviews tend to be more explorations of the ideas within a book, rather than a technical analysis.
- Example: “Book Review: The Alchemist“
These are also one of the main ways I make affiliate income on the site.
I usually finance my travels by working remotely while on the road. I don’t find talking about work to be all that interesting, to be honest, so I usually background this in my stories. Now and then I get the urge to write about something DN-related though.
- Example: “The Digital Nomad Deception“
Pieces of Life
My Instagram feed dumps into the “Pieces of Life” column on the right— it’s probably the most immediate lens into my life. I try to visit some beautiful places and play outdoors as much as possible, so I hope you enjoy it. If you like what you see, please follow me on Instagram at @thisisyouth.
In the Archives
I lived in Vail, Colorado, for a year after graduating college. That’s when I started this website, so if you dig deep into the archives (or if Google brought you here), you may find some content about that town and the ski bum lifestyle in general. I hit my first double black diamonds, got my second concussion on a snowboard, and learned to ski in Vail, so I have some love for the lifestyle. Not too much love for Vail Resorts. But I wouldn’t expect to see new ski town content too frequently, since I no longer live there.
I had a guy lined up to continue the ski town content, but in typical ski bum style, he’s been a little difficult to track down.
I hope you find something here worth considering. And please consider signing up for my weekly e-mail digest to keep up on new posts.
If you want to get in touch, leave a comment or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.