Here’s this week’s instalment of Blogger Behind the Blog where I interview a blogger all about their reasons for blogging and what it means to them. This week I’m joined by Hannah from What Hannah Did Next.
Here’s Hannah with more about her blogging life:
Where did your blog name come from?
I was desperate to rebrand and have a blog name that didn’t pigeon hole me. I was originally called Mummy and the Beasties and I would say that I quickly regretted that name within a couple of months of emerging onto the ‘mummy blogging’ scene. My husband actually came up with ‘What Hannah Did Next’ and I felt it was quite apt and could cover any niches should I feel like a change.
When did you start your blog and why?
I randomly started my blog in February 2011 after seeing online that having a blog attached to your website was good for exposure. At the time my husband and I were looking into starting an online print/artwork business. I literally stumbled across blogging and soon found myself immersed in a website called Great British Mummy Bloggers, signed up and soon got the bug and met friends straight away.
What did you do before you blogged?
I had just returned to work as a nurse after being off for a year on maternity leave with my first son. That same maternity leave made me want to branch out and do something else, although I wasn’t really sure what that was at the time. I still nurse part-time though.
What was your first post?
It was an extremely short post about my toddler not going to bed! It was extremely random but I remember not really having a clue what to write. It makes me all nostalgic looking at my old blog now.
What inspires you to blog?
It started as a place to put down some of my thoughts but now it is so much more. The opportunities that are available to us as a family, inspire me to continue blogging and I’ve found that it’s always evolving for me. I literally never know what each week might bring.
What post has had the best response, which post are you most proud of and which post did you enjoy writing the most?
I wrote a post about taking family photos from overhead, when we went through a phase of taking photos for our #capturesfromabove Instagram community. A lot of people were intrigued as to what our set up was.
I had some really positive responses from this post. I’m not a natural ‘poser’ myself and the photos in my post were taken in public places. I was proud of what I achieved on that shoot and it definitely changed my mindset for future photo shoots and I hope that my advice helped a few other people too with their confidence. It also helps that my husband knows what angles and poses work best, even if I tend to disagree!
I enjoy writing posts such as this one where I talk candidly about what it means to be bringing up a daughter, after having boys. I find that inspiration for posts that come straight from the heart hit me at the most inconvenient times, but when it does, I feel passionate about blogging all over again.
Have any of your posts not had the response that you expected?
Some have fallen flat and that can be quite deflating. Sometimes it’s all about timing and whether people will see my posts and share them! Then sometimes it’s probably because my writing or viewpoint isn’t as good as I think it is! ha ha.
Where do you see your blog in a year’s time?
I hope to be posting more regularly, with a better mix of topics and the ultimate dream is to be doing more travel related blogging and creating video content.
What is your favourite thing about blogging?
The likeminded people I have met and the amazing opportunities I’ve been presented with.
…and your least favourite?
SEO and general blog admin!
What’s the best blog post you have ever read?
I have read many of the years and typically of me, I never remember who has written what. I’ve read many
What blog do you love to read and why?
I actually don’t read any blogs these days and I realise that makes me sound a terrible blogger! When I first started, I read so many but as it became less of a hobby and more of a job, I simply never find the time. I’m more of a fan of micro blogging now on places like Instagram, that way I can keep up with what everyone is doing and it’s more manageable for me to read.
Do you do anything differently now to when you started blogging?
I would say that everything revolves mainly around social media now. Whereas I once used to write a post on what was happening in my life, I now tend to document it more on my social feeds. Oh and my photos have improved drastically and I now won’t post a photo that hasn’t been edited beforehand.
Is blogging what you expected it to be?
I honestly can’t remember what I thought back when I started but I never expected to be still doing it all these years later! I know that it was very different back then, it was more about what people used to write about – now the emphasis has shifted to what visual content you can create.
What’s been your favourite blog collaboration to date?
I would say my favourite collaboration was for Georgie’s playhouse. As it’s something that we would wouldn’t have been able to justify buying for her, it makes it that little bit more special. She adores it and it’s been lovely watching her enjoy having something like this in her childhood and hopefully for many more years to come.
Are there any brands you would love to work with, why?
Travel companies without a doubt – I’m not picky!
Have you had any blogging fails so far?
Hmmm, I wouldn’t say fails as such. I’ve recently finished a big campaign and I despite the brand feeling like a good fit at the beginning, I realised that our ideas weren’t aligned and it resulted in me feeling like my work wasn’t good enough for them, particularly my writing.
What is your biggest blogging hope, dream or ambition?
To be able to make enough money to live comfortably through blogging and to be able to travel places with the kids. In an ideal world, I’d galavant off around the world with my family and visit as many places as we could (while home schooling).
What do you do when you’re not blogging?
I work two days a week as a nurse. Apart from needing the income, I find that it also gives me more of a balance in my life – even if the dream is to blog full-time.
and lastly, tell us all a random fact about yourself
I worked as cabin crew for a couple of years before I trained to be a nurse!
Now that you know all about Hannah from What Hannah Did Next, make sure you go and read her blog. Make sure you follow her on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram too. Thanks so much Hannah for being involved!