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Q&A Series: Wanderer and Traveller

Hi guys,

This week on the blog we have Jessie from Wanderer and Traveller. I’m so happy to have Jessie on for an interview as I love her content especially her travel content and photography which is so varied and just all round awesome! I’m a huge fan of travelling so Jessie’s blog is great for tips, tricks and suggestions. If you’re like me and want to travel more, Jessie’s blog is the ideal blog to read to fulfil that sense of wanderlust, especially since the pandemic means we can’t travel as freely at the moment!

1.) Tell us all a bit about yourself!

Hey! So I’m Jessie. I started blogging about 6 years ago and enjoy travelling, reading and love music, especially going to huge techno/tech house gigs (and a bit of Ariana Grande on the side). I’m 23, I graduated Lincoln (UK) University last September in International Tourism Management and realised I wanted to blog about the trips I was lucky enough to take with my family, from them and then becoming old enough to travel on my own and with friends, this passion for travel unraveled. My family all work in the travel industry so I’ve always been exposed and come from a travelling background. From LA when I was 3 months old to my most recent trip to Paris for my birthday! (Unfortunately cut short due to Covid-19). I’ve lived in London for a year which brought me my London Bucket list, living nearby Cambridge this year bringing on my Cambridge bucket list. I’m always exploring no matter where I am. And always welcome to a nice book (and an entire series) on the way. You can enjoy plenty of my travel experiences and more on my blog!

2.) What inspired you to create a Blog and/ or Youtube and share your content?

I’ve always been very lucky especially to have travelled as much as I have and I’m incredibly grateful for this. Because I enjoyed what we were doing so much as we are very much of a DOING family, we like to be busy and out exploring. Why not share these adventure with everyone else? I started my blog with our trip to South Africa for 2 weeks, safari, exploring Cape Town and Robbin Island in tow. Then Florida, Disney and Miami. From there I started to journal and blog every adventure I went on. I love looking back at my posts myself to reminisce. I guess I started blogging because I’m a bit of a memory hoarder and thats what really inspired me to blog and create content. Reminiscing makes me happy. I also started my youtube channel in 2018 when I got a Go-Pro for my birthday. Best believe some of the best adventure have now been caught on film and I watch these back regularly. I started my youtube mainly as I have a lot of friends in other countries. I know I can share these things with them directly but that way they have constant access. For example, my Sri Lanka Trip Video’s on my channel, I went with 28 people for university. So they can access that footage whenever! The same with my Norway trip with my Utgang girl group, these beautiful ladies are all from Canada and America! I just love sharing.

3.) What have been some of your highlights whilst blogging?

I don’t have a lot of followers on my blog. So to reach 200 followers earlier this year (and firmly on my way to my next milestone) was such an achievement for myself and blog especially as I’ve been doing so many improvements. I feel I’ve improved massively on promoting my blog and being on socials. Being at uni I struggled to put a lot of time and effort into my blog so since graduating its been so great to focus on it more and for me that is a great milestone. I feel this year my blog has upgraded. And after for blogging for myself a lot of the time I’m loving the interactions with other bloggers. Especially in blogger collaborations! Being part of The Blog Brew collaboration is also a huge highlight as I’ve never been part of something that makes me feel so part of the blogging community. 

4.) I know it can feel strange re-reading your own work sometimes, but what’s one of your favourite posts you’ve written? 

Man I’m such a sucker for this as I actually love reading my own posts back, purely as I said before I’m a huge memory hoarder. Looking back at these things make me so happy and I love that nostalgic feeling. LOVE IT. One of my favourite posts I have ever written is “What is so great about Dark Tourism”. I wrote this post back in 2017 during university having found my favourite tourism topic and that was dark tourism. It is important to address these places as tourism topics and the importance these places actually hold. As morbid as it sounds I have a huge fascination for these places, Auchwitz, the 9/11 memorial, Chernobyl, the list goes on. The reason I enjoyed writing this post so much is because I actually went on to write my dissertation in 2018/19 on Generation Y and how social media influences those to visit Dark Tourism sites, if social media is influential in keeping these places alive, but also if social media affects how respectable generation Y are when visiting these places. Its one of my more touristy topics related to my degree I enjoyed writing and I wish I wrote more of them. speaking of which, I probably will now looking back at this!

5.) Is there anything that’s surprised you about blogging, anything you didn’t expect? 

I didn’t expect it to be SO much work. I know that probably sounds really naive and silly but man I did not realise until I started the time and effort into making your blog your own and it is so important to spend time on that. If I could tell myself when I started blogging that I’d have to dedicate so much time into it I feel my blog could’ve ben a lot better a lot sooner.

6.) What keeps you motivated to continue blogging and creating?

More travelling, more books, more Birchbox orders! I think as long as I keep wanting to share I’ll always be motivated. And unless something terrible happens I doubt it’ll ever come to not wanting to share. I also love the blogging interactions with other bloggers, other bloggers also give me motivation and the fact I want to strive to make my blog that little bit better every day! I have struggled massively to stay motivated during Covid-19 iso, but slowly and surely getting back on the horse and in control! 

7.) Who are some of your favourite bloggers or content creators?

I really enjoy Lilli (@Adventurexlil on instagram and www.adventurexlil.com) and her content on travel, I also love Majelle (@majelleabell on instagram and Majelleabell on YouTube!) Maj was actually my old flatmate from Canada who I had the pleasure of living and adventuring around Norway with in my final year of uni. 

8.) Your ultimate top tip to anyone thinking of starting a blog? 

ORGANISE AND PLAN BEFORE YOU MOVE FORWARD. Being organised makes for a much better pace and blog posts too! I find being organised also makes it a lot less stress free for you too. Know what you’re doing before you go in and them smash it out of the park! Also communicate with the blogging community across other social media platforms. It’s so beneficial and also really makes you feel part of something, I wish I had done this a lot sooner! Also, be patient with yourself, your blog and your progress.

Posts you should check out:

My dark tourism post I talk about above! https://wondererandtraveller.wordpress.com/2017/06/18/what-is-so-great-about-dark-tourism/

My London Bucket List Series https://wondererandtraveller.wordpress.com/my-travelling-bucket-lists/my-london-bucket-list/

My Trip to Norway! https://wondererandtraveller.wordpress.com/2019/07/13/norway-on-the-road-trip-to-norway-aurland/

Where to find Jessie:

Instagram: @jessiexmills

Twitter: @_itsjustjessie_

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