About

Paris Unlocked Founder and Editor Courtney Traub

The author in Positano, Italy in 2017.

This site is written and managed by Courtney Traub. I’m a lifetime Francophile and longtime Paris resident who now divides her time (as well as I can) between London and the French capital. Living away from Paris for much of the year has only led me to appreciate it more, though, fueling additional inspiration for whatever you may read here.

I’m the primary Paris writer for TripSavvy and co-author of the 2012 Michelin Green Guide to Northern France & the Paris Region. I was formerly editor of the About Paris Travel site, before it was incorporated into the TripSavvy network. I’ve written and reported for media outlets including The Christian Science Monitor, Radio France Internationale, Reed Business Information, WWD, and The Associated Press, and am a scholar of literature and cultural history whose essays and reviews have appeared in various forums. I have a rather obsessive curiosity and passion for environmental history and ethics, the way we navigate and build stories around cities (hence this site), and food. Perhaps the latter most of all, in truth.

I’m incurably haunted by Paris and the stories of its streets, to loosely paraphrase the late and great Leonard Cohen. I have, and always will, consider it to be the most marvelous city on the planet. I first moved there as a feckless 22-year old, and never looked back. My objective with this site is to offer part travel guide (but not necessarily in the traditional sense), part exploratory space for unlocking the many histories and stories of Paris, past and present, and part forum for excavating my own experiences and memories of living there. Taking strong cues from Marcel Proust, I recognize how fragile and unwieldy our memories of times and places are. Also like that heroic crafter of page-long sentences, I’m interested in the effort of searching for those lost times and places, however imperfect and unreliable the result may be.

In addition to my Paris-centric work, I’m currently writing a book about how Romantic writers of the 19th century (think Coleridge, William Blake, Whitman, Thoreau, Mary Shelley) powerfully influence how we perceive– and imagine through literature and art– the formidable environmental and technological problems we’re currently faced with. It compares fiction, poetry and non-fiction from the 19th century to the early 21st, and also throws into the mix a few experimental multimedia projects from (great) countercultural weirdos. Stay tuned.

If you like what you read here, make sure to follow my official Page on Facebook, and subscribe to my bimonthly newsletter, which offers travel tips, stories, and quirky features about the French capital in each issue. You can also follow me on Twitter, find travel inspiration from my boards on Pinterest, and follow me on Instagram. I’m always open to feedback and suggestions, too, so do get in touch if there’s particular coverage or stories you’d like to see here, or if you simply feel like saying hello.

Interested in learning more about how your personal information is used on this site, or how to change your privacy and newsletter subscription settings? Please see my Privacy Policy for more information.

Finally, this project is one I’m undertaking as a labor of love, in addition to my day job. If you like what you read here and would like to see more, please do consider donating whatever you can via Paypal. This will help fund more in-depth, engaging features that go beyond the bland “listicle”. Your contribution is very much appreciated.

Thanks for visiting!

–Courtney