#Girlcrush - Maree Hunter
Tell us about yourself and your blog!
My name is Maree. I’m 30 years old and I am the sole blogger at The Novel Lifestyle. I review fiction books, blog about products I love, motherhood and whatever my followers ask me to do!
What inspired you to start your own blog?
I originally started a book blog to track the number of books I was reader and slowly, my readership grew. About a month ago, I decided it was time for a name change. My blog was growing and my passion was developing and I wanted to branch out into more general fields of blogging and not just books. I love writing and taking photos, so blogging is more fun for me than anything!
How would you describe your blogging style?
It’s fun, kinda of creative and very much ‘me’. I try and be myself more than anything. It’s easier to maintain!
Can you tell us about your ideal reader?
My ideal reader is someone with an open mind and a good sense of humour. Someone who loves to read books and just generally enjoy the finer things in life.
How do you structure your days?
I’m a mum of two, a full time uni student and a teacher. My days are busy to say the least. But my blogging takes pride in my life so I try and make time for a little bit every night.
Is blogging your profession or hobby?
At this stage, it’s a hobby. But I would love to make it my profession. One day at a time!
What has been your most successful blog post?
I do a lot of giveaways and to be honest, they have been my most popular. I spend more time on social media than I do on my website. But this is something I’m changing in 2018.
Describe your writing process from start to finish.
I literally sit down at my computer and just write. I find inspiration from my own experiences. I will write a blog post about the 5 books that help me whenever I have a book-hangover (as they call it) because a week before, I was struggling with one myself. Finding that next ‘good book’ after you’ve just read the best one of your life is really hard. So I like to write from experience. My readers rely on my honesty and I find I give my most hones blog posts from things that have happened to me.
Where and how do you work best?
I work best wherever haha.. it’s a talent that comes from being a mum ;)
What were the first few steps you took to get your blog up and running?
I honestly just sat down one day and created my own website and facebook pages and started from there. It’s grown as I have networked with other bloggers and gained more experience over the years.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your blog and attracting an audience?
Word of mouth. I have a lot of blogger and author friends who have helped me grow my blog over the years by sharing reviews on their pages for their readers to read and that is how I have grown. Organically. I do sponsor posts that are important to me, but an organic growth is what I really take pride in.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
Definitely having my posts seen and growing my Instagram audience and subscription lists.
How did you overcome these challenges?
Working hard to bring the best content I can!
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
I have a small network of friends who share the same passion. Some highly successful, and some small like myself. We support each other in good times and bad. I couldn’t do this without them.
How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
I like to think I have a different approach to ‘book blogging’ by bringing in my personal life and sharing my blogging experiences. This is such a competitive industry, and having other bloggers share their secrets is hard to find. I like to be different and help people be successful by sharing them the ways I have found things to be easy for me.
What do you wish you knew when you started your blog?
This is a hard one. I think the importance of being yourself. And not trying to do what everyone else is going.
What blogging tools/resources could you not work without?
My laptop (obvs) – Instagram, my stock photo subscription and my besties!
Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?
Wow ok I’ve not really thought about this one before. I guess I aspire to be as individually successful as possible. I don’t really want to be like ‘everyone else’. I want people to look up to me and be proud of what I’ve created. Bloggers I love MissKyreeLoves – Oh Eight Oh Nine and Kaylee Wright
What advice would you give to other bloggers?
Just be yourself. Surround yourself with people who love what you love and always lend a helping hand to someone in need.
What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?
That there are SO many supportive groups out there and there are people who really do want to help you succeed.
Where would you like your blog to be 1 year from now?
I would like to have grown a lot. My goal this year is to read 10K followers on Instagram and hit 1000 subscribers on my website. That would be a dream come true.
Where can we find you?
Facebook Group: The Novel Society