I’ve been lucky enough to meet some truly inspiring women over the last few months. Thanks mostly to Facebook Groups that I’ve joined. Nicki Sunderland of Eat Live Travel Drink was one of the first women to lend me a helping hand in the form of feedback. She’s honest, down to earth and hard working. How else would you explain her growth from 0 to 85,000 followers in just over a year? This female entrepreneur is working with some of the biggest brands in the industry and has started offering consulting services to the masses. Before she blows up, I wanted to ask her a few questions about how she started, what she does exactly and how she balances work, life, and being a married solo travel.
A: Tell us about your blog:
Nicki: When I started my blog I did not know what I was going to write about – now I just write about anything travel related. Mostly luxury hotels, guides, product reviews, food, photo journals, and really anything that comes to mind.
A: 5 random facts about you:
N: I am Irish and Scottish, I don’t know how to use my camera (I just wing it), I am addicted to Instagram, I have a dog named Boogie that is my life, and I am married and a solo traveler.
A: What inspired you to Travel?
N: My entire life I have had the itch to see the world. I knew if I wanted to see it I would have to do it alone at times because other people did not have the passion I did.
A: How long have you been blogging?
N: A little over a year
A: 3 Places you haven’t visited that are on your Bucket List:
N: Maldives, Greenland, and Antarctica
A: Window or Aisle?
N: Both. I used to say window because I love the views but lately I have found on long haul flights I want the aisle so I can get up when I want.
A: Craziest Travel Story or Horror Story:
N: I was robbed in Hawaii. I parked the car and walked away and within 30 seconds the window was broken and my stuff was stolen.
A: Favorite Travel Apps:
N: Instagram, Travelocity, Airbnb, Skyscanner, Hotels.com
A: Do you consider yourself a Digital Nomad? If not, where do you call home?
N: Yes and no. I can work from just about anywhere but I do have a home in Alexandria, Virginia
A: What’s your favorite pizza toppings?
N: Tough call – I am a big fan of pizza and love cheese
A: Breakdown a normal work day or week;
N: It changes every single day. But on average I work about 10-14 hours a day while traveling and when I am at home. Something is always waiting to be done – blogs, social media, sponsorships, emails, consulting with brands and/or bloggers, meetings, photographing places, creating content – you never know what the day will bring.
A: Favorite Blogging Apps:
N: WordPress and Pinterest
A: If you could time-travel where would you go?
N: I’d go to the future. I am hopeful that there will be quicker modes of transportation for long haul flights that will make them shorter and more manageable.
A: How do you balance traveling, blogging and your personal life?
N: I won’t lie, it’s hard. A lot of days I have to balance all three from half way around the world and it can be challenging. I try and make a list every day of things that have to get done and a list of things to get ahead on. When I am traveling work doesn’t stop – there are many days I spend in hotel rooms chained to my computer for 10 hours working. I have to keep working to continue this life/career path. With friends, I need to schedule days and times to get together because of my tight schedule and sacrifice seeing them all the time – but they understand.
A: 5 Thing you take with you on every trip:
N: iPhone, GoPro, DSLR, Laptop, a large charging strip to charge everything at once
A: What do you find most challenging and rewarding about blogging?
N: Being away from home so much is a challenge but it’s equally as rewarding because of the people I meet and the cultures I experience along the way.
A: Favorite Travel Movies:
N: Brokedown Palace (lessons to be learned here), The Beach, Eat Pray Love, Taken (lessons).
A: What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
N: If at first you don’t succeed, try again. This industry is full of the answer “no.” But you have to get through a lot of no’s to get to a yes – so don’t give up.
A: Advice for someone starting a travel blog:
N: Don’t get in it for the money, do it because you love it. You may never turn a profit from it either, so come to terms with that day 1 and you’ll never be sad about it.
A: What are your Blog/Brand Goals for 2017?
N: I want to slow down a bit this year. Last year was a big year for me and I want to take some time to work on my brand and expand it.