Meet The Blogger Series - Interview 27 - Travel Special!

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

I have decided to start a new series here on Sunshine Sarahxo after meeting so many lovely bloggers on Twitter I would like to get to know them. So I am going to try to recruit as many as I can as I think everyone deserves a chance to be in the spotlight. =) 

Q1: Hello there, nice to have you here on Sunshine Sarahxo! Please could you introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about your blog: 

Hi there! Thanks so much for having me :)

I'm Monica and I'm a British travel blogger. I run a site called The Travel Hack and I've been blogging for about six years. It's a blog all about my travels around the world and has recently become a bit more focused on weekend adventures and short holidays. 

The Travel Hack is listed as one of the top 10 UK travel blogs by Cision and Yahoo. I blog full time - as well as caring for my baby son - and travel once or twice a month.

Q2: At what point did you decide to make a Blog and share it with the world?? 

I began blogging when I was training to be a journalist as I wanted to have an online portfolio for when I applied for jobs. It began when I went backpacking for two years through Asia and Australia and as I love writing and I quickly fell in love with blogging. 

My first blog was featured on my local newspaper's website but I started my own blog once I returned home from travelling. 

I was very shy about my blog at first and didn't want to share it with my friends and family but I began sharing it with the blogging community and things really started to take off. I still get shy if I know my family are reading it!

Q3: How would you describe your writing style? Has it changed over time at all? 

I try to keep my writing style as though your best friend is telling you all about their holiday. It's chatty and informal but still has lots of details and information to help anyone who might want to replicate my trip.

I hope my writing style hasn't changed too much - it's just got better!

I used to write a lot of journal style entries but now I do consider SEO and I write some blog posts focused on what I know people are searching for so some posts are more informative.

Q4: Was there anyone in particular who inspired you? Which Bloggers do you emulate?

The first travel blogger I ever came across was Victoria from Pommie Travels. Until I discovered her blog I genuinely thought I was the only person travel blogging! I couldn't believe how successful and professional she was and I quickly emailed her for some advice. She emailed me back which was lovely and it's funny because she's now one of my many blogger friends and we end up at lots of events together!

I now get a lot of inspiration from different types of bloggers. I read fashion, beauty, lifestyle, cooking and business blogs. I've just returned from a press trip to Florida with a Swedish beauty blogger called Annica Englund and I learned so much from her. She writes four blog posts per day and spent every spare minute working on her blog. I was so impressed by how hard working she is and she really deserves all the success she has.

Q5: Do you have anything in the pipeline on the Blog which you are particularly excited about?!

I'm launching a blogging e-course! It's a 10 module course focusing on different areas of blogging that will help people get to that 'next level' in blogging. I speak to a lot of bloggers who have around 5,000 followers and earn a couple of hundred pounds a month but just can't quite get to the next stage of earning more money or getting more readers. 

There are so many eBooks and courses out there but most of them are filled with generic fluff that doesn't really teach you a lot. This course is going to be chocker with information so it's taking a little longer to put together. I'm so proud of the content I've got together so far and it's going to be a really affordable but really informative course. (It's called the Professional Bloggers Collective and we have a Facebook group if you're interested)

Q6: Does anyone else know about your Blog? What do they think about it?? 

I hope so!

I did a reader survey recently to find out what my readers think and the response was so lovely and positive. It's so great to hear from readers who have been following the blog for a few years and really enjoy reading it. It freaks me out knowing there are people who wait for every new post and read every word but I love it.

Q7: Are you obsessed with Lush!?!? If YES what is your favourite product?!

Obsessed might be a bit far but I do like the dry shampoo bars! Very handy for travelling.

Q8: Has your Blog helped you in other areas of life?! 

Definitely! Every 'real' job I've ever had was because of my blog. I worked as an editorial assistant for a travel website and a social media manager for a travel agent and I was found through my blog. Blogging is now my full time career so I can't imagine my life without it.

Because of my blog, my family and I get to travel the world. Blogging has also made me more outgoing and confident. I'm happy to travel solo and speak in front of large audiences which I'd never do before! I've also met so many friends through blogging who I never would have met otherwise so blogging has definitely helped all areas of my life!

Q9: What is it that makes you so fabulous?! 

Ooo that's a tough one to answer! I travel the world for my job - that's pretty fabulous, right?

Seriously though, I live by the motto, 'Work hard and be nice to people'. So, IMHO, I think that's fabulous. I think people underestimate how important it is to just be nice. I believe in karma and if you're a bitch karma is going to come right back around and bite you on the ass.

Q10: Finally, can you recommened anything to us today!? (Skincare/Beauty/TV Show/DVD/Music/Food Item...anything!)

I recommend travelling to Iceland. Like, right now! Iceland is my favourite country in the whole world and I seriously think everyone should visit. even if you think you're a hot destination kind of person, everyone I know falls head over heels in love with Iceland. 

Monica Stott
Travel Blogger, The Travel Hack

So that concludes our 'Meet the Blogger' for today! Thank You so Much for taking the time to answer these questions today, much appreciated! 

Please take the time to check out the blog/Twitter/Facebook/Instagram etc, be sure to leave a comment saying you found them via Sunshine Sarahxo! Thank You!! 

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