My burps taste like pumpkin spice and my jean shorts feel tight, and can someone hook a girl up with some rocket and tomatoes and balsamic vinegar plzzzz?
I’m currently in the Trek America mini van and we’ve just departed Memphis, bound for a town called Natchez in south Mississippi.
We have a five-hour drive, so I thought now would be a good time to dive face first into a bit of blog work and get a lil bit of content out for you sweet poppets.
A little while back I read a Q&A blog post on Emma Hill’s blog (as opposed to, y’know, the classic Q&A YouTube video), and I liked reading the answers. I liked the format. It was a good post. And so I thought I’d do my own.
SO HI, HERE WE ARE NOW.
I’ve separated them into sections to make them easier to skim read because let’s face it, your attention span is probs like 2.4 seconds because OOOH LOOK A NEW INSTAGRAM FOLLOWER.
C A R E E R
How did you get your first journalism role? (@Becloumar)
I graduated with a degree in Journalism in 2011 and then had a weird six months where I did everything from working as an estate agent, being on the dole, and working for a media database company in Battersea.
I started writing blog posts for £6 a pop for a start-up digital fashion company and eventually they took me on full-time on minimum wage. I had SEO training and started liaising with brands, as well as growing my knowledge of how to use WordPress.
After six months I applied for two editorial roles – one at LOOK.co.uk and one at Heatworld and got interviews for both. The LOOK interview was first and the next day they called to offer me the job, so I took it there and then and started the very next week.
The rest, as cliche-lovers say, is history.
How the flip do you stay organised and on top of emails and blog admin? (@MissKatyEnglish)
I would be lost without my Bullet Journal – I have a diary page for every month where I write down all blog meetings/blogging events I’ve said yes to, as well as non-work related stuff.
I have another page per month where I write down all my campaigns and then columns for what the brief is, how much it’s for, whether I’ve completed it, invoiced for it and been paid. Which helps me hugely when knowing whether I need to chase people.
I also have another page where I brainstorm blog and video ideas as well as columns for what I’ve actually completed.
But emails, just nope. I’m awful at replying. I’ve started star-ing important things, but I’m still always behind.
Do you still get nervous to post YouTube videos or blog posts or going to blogging events? (@grabyourcam)
I don’t nervous over YouTube videos, mostly because I’m aware that my reach is much smaller – but definitely 102 bazillion per centif a blog post is on an immensely personal subject or if it involves really putting myself and my beliefs out there.
I tend to hit publish, push on Twitter and then walk away from my laptop for a bit.
I think it’s only human to want people to like you, so sometimes it’s hard to sit back and be like people don’t agree with you, maybe people don’t like you and y’know what? That’s OK. Not everyone has to like you or agree with you.
As for blogging events, OF COURSE. I tend to stay away from ‘drop in’ blogging events because there’s only so many times I can awkwardly stand in the corner clutching a glass of prosecco and pretending to be submerged in emails and Twitter notifications and I think I’ve hit my life quota.
Do you miss your journalist life? What did you learn from it that helped you become a successful blogger? (@gemfash)
I desperately miss colleagues and that feeling of being part of a team. I miss tea rounds and that Friday feeling. I miss having people to dissect your life with when you need a break from staring at a screen. BUT, I would never want to change being self-employed, so you just have to learn that everything has positives and negatives, even if it doesn’t look that way from the outside.
Maybe one day it’d be cool to grown my own team. We’d have a Diet Coke fridge and do Starbucks runs and listen to Ja Rule and Ashanti and take each other’s outfit photos.
Working as a journalist before I became a blogger taught me a LOT about working with brands and PRs, about what content does well online, and about how the industry works and I’m not sure I’d have been a very good blogger without the journalist bit first.
What do you think you would be doing if you weren’t blogging full-time? (@eleanorgraceful)
I would probably still be a digital journalist – either at metro.co.uk or maybe at Buzzfeed. If I were to quit blogging now, I’d want to do something new and completely different. I think I’d want to help people. I’d have loved to have been a doctor if I wasn’t so busy getting distracted by boys at school, so maybe working as a paramedic or as a 999 call handler.
How do you feel about people you know reading/watching personal things if they come across your blog/YouTube? (@tickydinky)
I totally detach from people I went to school with or knew growing up, reading my content. I’m more bothered by the idea of close relatives reading things they might not necessarily like, or things that are, ahem, not meant for their eyes.
It makes me die a teeny tiny bit inside that my dad or brothers could have read any of my stuff about sex or contraception or omg brb whilst I move to Sibera.
How do you self-motivate? (@HannyFakeTanny)
I’ve found that the only way to get myself into LET’S GIRL BOSS THE FUCK OUT OF TODAY mode is to start work within about 15 minutes of waking up. I start with coffee and a phone catch-up in bed, before doing emails and social updates and then moving my laptop downstairs and just being like GO, GO, GO. I feel if I stop, even to watch a sneaky episode of Teen Mom with lunch, that I lose my motivation and drive and hang on shall I just have a nap?
What hosting provider do you use for your blog? And how did you get it so recognised in the early days? (@megaangriffin)
I use a company called Krystal to self-host and then use WordPress. I think I was pretty lucky that I started blogging properly just as listicles really took off on the internet – and a lot of my early list posts were shared in their hundreds of thousands which gave me readers almost overnight.
I think the best way to get recognised (and I could definitely do with taking my own advice) is to do something a bit different. To try and work out what’s missing from the blogging world. In such a saturated industry it’s so, so hard to stand out. So try to find your own voice – oh, and upload consistently, even if it’s just once a week!
S T Y L E
What is one beauty product that you couldn’t live without? (@StephJayne_)
Dry shampoo. All day err’yday. My hair is super fine and flat and gets greasy pretty much as soon as it’s dried from a wash, so I swear by Batiste’s dry shampoo.
How do you find inspiration for fashion? From copying others or simply seeing something and going ‘ooooooooh’? (@jorey1984)
I use Pinterest to collect ideas for outfits which I find really useful for when I’m bored of everything I already own but don’t want to buy new things. Often it reminds me not to try too hard, sometimes jeans and a plain t-shirt can look super cute so long as you have a bright lipstick and a fun bag.
I also find looking back at old outfit photos really useful for working out what suits me and what doesn’t – so then I’ll try and buy more of the things that I think suit me.
What are your favourite go-to street style poses or top tips for looking natural in front of the camera? (@madeupstyle)
I always feel most comfortable posing in front of a wall (nope, no idea why – especially if that wall is baby pink, obvs…) and I think that comes through in my images.
I tend to stand with my hand on my hip, or my hand holding the edge of my hat because lol, always wearing a damned hat. And I love a laugh face because whenever I try and do anything sexy or sultry, I look like I’m having a stroke.
T R A V E L
If money was no object, what would your dream holiday be? (@beingbecki_)
Probably a really long road trip around the U.S. where I’d visit every state, but also stay in really fancy hotels with rooftop pools and waffle makers and dressing gowns and every shit but amazing U.S. TV channel known to man.
Where’s your favourite place that you’ve been to in the States? (@ElzBelz33)
I think after this Trek America trip I’ll have visited around 12 states and FFS, such a basic bitch, but New York is still the place I love most. I love the buzz and that immense feeling of hope that floods your body when you first see the Manhattan skyline IRL.
I also love the National Parks over here, they’re next level Instagram-porn – my fave was Zion which is in Utah.
F U N
If you were a biscuit, what biscuit would you be? (@glitter_dasiys)
Probably some sort of elaborate cookie with too many things going on. Maybe like a macadamia, white chocolate and raspberry cookie (if that is even a thing). Fun, full of flavour but omg I can only have one bite of you because babes, you are way too much.
How do you get Rudey and Granger to not kill each other? (@eleanorgraceful)
With a lot of difficulty. Granger is a couple of years younger than Rudey and still wants to play and she’s like nope. There’s hissing nearly every day, but then there’s also nap time together and grooming each other nearly every day, so I’m like guys, DO YOU LOVE OR HATE EACH OTHER?
When we go away we keep them separated because otherwise Rudey gets stressed and poos on the sofa.
Five celebs you would invite to a dinner party (@LauraLFTN)
JoJo, Cherry Healey, this amazing old German autopsy specialist I saw on a murder documentary recently, Derek Shepherd from Grey’s Anatomy and Salem the cat.
If you could describe yourself in three emojis, what would they be and why? (@AmandaBootes)
The sassy girl emoji because it’s my most over-used one and I like to think I’m kind of sassy (as least on the internet, eh?). The thinking emoji with a hand on its chin because I spend way too long in bed learning about andom things on Wikipedia. And the emoji with bandages on because I’m so hideously clumsy and broken. I’ve lost and then re-found my camera three times on this trip already, someone come help me.
HOPE YOU LIKED THIS.