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Tess' first book “Leap: Leaving A Job With No Plan B to Find the Career and Life You Really Want” was published in August 2015 by Random House Harmony. For more information on the book, go here.

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Tess Untethered | Tess Vigeland- Digital Nomad and Storyteller
Hi! I’m Tess and in late 2015, I untethered from pretty much everything in my life and bought a one-way ticket abroad to see what life was like away from all that I knew. I was 46 years old, and had lived a most remarkable life of success and privilege and comfort and knowing exactly how things were supposed to go. But over the span of three years, starting in 2012, I quit my two-decade career as a national radio journalist, wrote a book, sold my house and a good chunk of my things, and moved 8,000 miles (13,000km) away, alone, to a place I’d never been and where I didn’t know a single soul. I’ve called it a “re-set” on my life. It’s not that anything was wrong, but I just felt like I needed more, I needed to experience something out of the ordinary, and it required radical change. I left with two backpacks of clothes, shoes, a laptop, my audio recording gear, and two cameras.
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Tess Vigeland

Expat journalist currently exploring Southeast Asia and beyond
Hi! I’m Tess and in late 2015, I untethered from pretty much everything in my life and bought a one-way ticket abroad to see what life was like away from all that I knew. I’d lived a most remarkable and fortunate life of success and privilege and comfort and knowing exactly how things were supposed to go. I always had a plan. Always. Until now.

Over the span of three years, starting in 2012, I quit my two-decade career as a national radio journalist, wrote a book, sold my house and a good chunk of my things, and moved 8,000 miles (13,000km) away, alone, to a place I’d never been and where I didn’t know a single soul. I left with two backpacks of clothes, shoes, a laptop, my audio recording gear, and two cameras

I’m documenting the journey here, and I’m so glad to have you along. In Dispatches, you’ll find a sort-of rolling travel journal of expat life; under Reporting you’ll find my photo essays and other published work; Odds & Ends is little observations that don’t deserve a full post; and Travel Advice is the practical stuff I’m learning about living abroad. Please drop me a line or leave a voicemail and say hello – especially if you happen to be in my corner of the planet!

Recent Posts

Check back periodically for new entries

My Stories:

Written, Spoken and Photographed

Photo Essays

Visual Storytelling

I’ve been teaching myself photography since late 2013. You can find that work on Instagram and photo essays on a site called Exposure. I love landscapes, but am pushing myself to take more pictures of people.

Long-Form Journalism

Writing

Blog Posts and written stories

I write for several publications, as well as “blogging” on this site. You can find links to some of my favorite stories, as well as recent work here.

Reporting

Audio posts, interviews, and long-form journalism

I spent my entire career in audio journalism as a reporter and anchor for public radio in the U.S. I love the craft of radio, and will be podcasting soon, so stay tuned! Check back here for links to podcasts, in-depth reporting from the field, and favorite interviews on other websites and Soundcloud.

Subscribe here to receive updates from Tess when she publishes new work!