I am a big believer in fate. With every bone in my body, I believe that everything happens for a reason, and every now and then I seem to be dealt a hand in life that turns my world upside down. When I first launched The Travelista, I wrote about how a combination of hard work and a stroke of luck took me ‘From Tea Girl to Luxury Travel Blogger’. The post tells my story of how I got a foot in the ever-so-narrow door of print travel writing, which also kicked off my blogging career. The post had an overwhelming response and to this day still receives high traffic and comments. I now want to tell you…’what happened next’, so sit back, read on and consider this ‘part 2’ of my career and blogging story.
After leaving the elusive ‘tea girl’ job behind back in 2011, I met the most valuable contact of my life so far, the editor of a men’s luxury lifestyle publication. I began writing the travel features for his publication on a freelance basis (offering my articles entirely for free at first). In the two years I have worked for him, I’ve travelled to Marrakech, Mauritius, La Reunion, Sardinia and Munich, with further trips to Rome and Zambia also lined up in 2014. These trips allowed me to establish myself as a credible travel writer, with a print portfolio as well as an online blogging outlet to showcase my work.
This new credibility landed me a new job doing digital content for a travel company, working on their blog, social media and website. For one year, I blissfully lived and breathed travel content from the moment I woke up to the moment I went to sleep. At first, blogging for The Travelista went along hand in hand perfectly with my job. I was shortlisted for a Cosmo Blog Award and continued to do press trips in my annual leave. I was thrilled to have to many increasing opportunities to work with different travel brands, but when I realised I wanted to grow my blog by working commercially with other brands, I knew it was time to leave the company.
Coincidently, this was the same time I received a random call from the editor I freelance for, telling me he thinks he has found a perfect opportunity for me down in London and wanted to introduce me to a friend of his. Was I interested? Hell yes I was interested.
With my blog continuing to grow in terms of traffic and followings, as well as financial and travel opportunities, I realised the only way for me to move forward in my career was to become freelance. This way there could be no commercial conflicts. I couldn’t believe my luck when I learned that the new opportunity was a job as a freelance Group Editor for a new luxury publication of a private members club. With features to write on lifestyle, restaurants and luxury travel as well as opportunities TO travel (first stop Monaco Grand Prix in May), it was a job I couldn’t even have dreamt up. Needless to say, I made damn sure the job was mine.
Since starting my role, I have enjoyed some of the most fun-filled, exciting and glamorous weeks of my life. I am meeting so many amazing people, visiting London’s hot spots and ultimately working on new publication that I truly love and believe in. I also keep up the blog in my spare time and am working with travel brands, spas and PRs on a regular basis to keep my content fresh and exciting. I’m self employed now, and whilst I work full time hours in my new job, I have control over when I work and what I work on.
This opportunity came at the perfect time, and I am so glad I stuck to my guns and didn’t give up what I love doing for a company that didn’t believe in me or my blog. Blogging is my #1 passion that has opened up so many doors for me, and I don’t intend to give up for anyone. I never really planned to move back down to London, but I believe you need to let opportunities lead the way. I took a leap of faith and I am absolutely loving it, safe in the knowledge that I can continue to work, blog and travel in perfect harmony!
Have you been in a similar situation juggling work and blogging? If you’ve enjoyed this post, please leave me a comment in the box below. I’d love to hear your thoughts, and make sure I reply to every single one! x