Why I chose this topic:
As I began to take interest in a career path that seemed “too good to be true,” I began to wonder…is it too good to be true? During my internship, I was fortunate to meet several travel writers and bloggers. But as I spoke with them, it became evident that many of them have “day jobs” and do their writing on the side. This worried me, as I hoped that I could be successful with a full-time writing career. I decided to take matters into my own hands and find out if a full-time travel writing career is a joke, or if I can hit the jackpot by being able to combine two things I love into a prosperous career.
The most effective way I learn is from others – whether it be watching, listening or reading. So I decided to reach out to the sources I know to gather information by interviews. My interviewees were: Marilyn Johnson (Philly Grub) – a food blogger based out of Philadelphia and named one of Philly’s must-follow food scene accounts, Kimberly Knight – a lifestyle blogger who serves as an advocate to the gay Christians in America, Jennifer Huber (Solo Travel Girl) – a travel blogger who was named best solo travel blog by Luxury Travel Mavens in 2012 and Nanci Theoret – a freelance travel, food, lifestyle and real estate writer who won two consecutive Florida Magazine Association first-place Charlie Awards as editor and sole writer for IN Good Company. I provided them the same set of questions (for fairness and consistency), and I found a lot of similarities in the responses I got.
While browsing the web I also came across an article titled “The Honest Truth on How I Became a Full-Time Travel Blogger” written by a young lady named Nicola Easterby (Polkadot Passport) whose travel blog recently won the silver award for best upcoming travel blogger at TBC Asia 2016. I started reading her blog article and could not stop! I found myself immersed, obsessed and relating with what she was writing. Although I couldn’t contact her, I learned a lot from the said post.
Because my findings were so similar, I will spare you the time and not go over every detail. Instead, here is a summary.
- All three bloggers do not blog full-time, but they wish they could.
- The main barrier that keeps them from full-time blogging is monetary.
- None of the bloggers have journalism degrees.
- The full-time freelance writer, Nanci Theoret, does have a degree in journalism.
- All writers enjoy their jobs. Part-time bloggers would prefer to be blogging full-time vs. their day jobs.
- Main challenge for all seems to be time management and work/life balance.
- If they could change one thing, they would have aimed higher sooner – monetized blogs (Philly Grub), more diligently searched for jobs after college (Solo Travel Girl and Knight), found voice and applied for better jobs sooner (Theoret).
- Steps it takes to be successful at it – all agreed that it takes time, persistence, and dedication.
- Tips and advice: Be consistent and believe in yourself – everyone.
- Easterby does not have a college degree.
- One of her struggles has been time management.
- She took risks.
- She made connections.
- She followed her passion.
- Dedicated her time and life to her blog.
I found it intriguing how in sync the subjects of my research were. My findings have lead me to believe that it is possible to attain my dream of making a living off what I love and have restored my faith in that. The information I learned from this is invaluable and has motivated me to accomplish my goals and aspirations!
To read the full interviews, click here.