If you were a reader of my blog last year, then you might remember that I began a series called ‘Meet The Blogger’ which basically is an interview style series where I interview a group of bloggers each week with blog related questions.
I brought in a new group of bloggers at the beginning of this year but after a year since the first series started, I’ve brought back the originals from last year aka the OG’s haha for a part 2.
So welcome back Fran from Francisca Rockey. A year on since we last spoke, Fran is now nineteen and no longer a student as she is currently on a gap year. I absolutely love Fran’s content and how she isn’t afraid to speak her mind. She raises so much awareness for so many important topics and I admire her so much.
You can check out the previous post with Fran from last year here but without further a due let’s get into the questions!
How has your blog developed and grown since last year?
In the last year, my blog has grown massively. My views have gone up more, my readers are engaging with my content through the comment section and I’ve made more blogger friends.
In terms of development, I invested in a camera and tripod at the end of last year, brought a Macbook and a Lightroom subscription. These items aren’t essentials for blogging but for me, I have found that upgrading my equipment my content has upgraded too.
I can do more with my camera, better quality images. My old laptop was a netbook size and so too many applications open at once would crash it, this would often happen in the midst of writing a blog post then I would lose work I’ve spent hours writing and not bother rewriting. It was demotivating.
Having Lightroom has allowed me to be more creative with my blog image and enhance my photography over on Instagram. I’m not an expert but I’m a beginner who is willing to learn and get to expert level. One day but not any time soon I don’t have enough hours in my day.
Last year you didn’t have any goals in mind for 2019, have you set any since then and if so, how are they going?
One of my blog goals for 2019 was to show my face more. I found I was very distant from my followers as a faceless blogger, the thought of showing my face on my blog and Instagram made me anxious as I don’t feel like I have the blogger look aka I’m not white, blonde and skinny.
There aren’t many bloggers who look like me and so being faceless meant I didn’t feel like I had to compete or act a certain way to be accepted. Now I’m like f*ck it, people like realness and I may not be the same as a lot of people within this industry but I don’t have to be.
I am me, I am Francisca Rockey, nothing more and nothing less. People connect with you more when they can put a face to the person behind your writing and hear the voice behind a photo.
You speak about the importance of diversity in the blogger industry, how can the industry make it more fair and diverse?
Diversity in the blogging industry is non-existent. Day in, day out, we see the same group of people (white, able-bodied, skinny, long hair, blonde, blue eyes) being taken on press trips, working with set brands, going to events etc and that’s part of the reason why this industry can be so detached from the real world.
This is not a true reflection of the world we live in, you don’t walk down the street and only see one type of person unless you live in a remote village in the middle of Oxfordshire, which isn’t known for being diverse.
Achieving diversity is simple. Diversify your PR list, shout out different types of bloggers on your weekly shoutouts, ask PR’s how diverse a campaign is before working on it.
Diversity is more than just race. It’s showing different body shapes, hair types (curly, afro), different classes (working class bloggers), disabilities, sexual orientations, religion as well as representing different races.
You’ve recently started a podcast, why did you decide to start one?
I was having a discussion with Lucy from Forever September about starting a podcast and I said how I have always wanted to start a Youtube channel but have never found the confidence or time. After doing some research, I discovered how to start and record a podcast. It took a few hours to come up with the name and the direction I wanted to take it but I think #HonestyHour fits my brand perfectly.
Could you tell us more about the podcast itself? What is it about? Who is it aimed at? What can we take away from it?
#HonestyHour is a 30-minute topic talk where I discuss a range of controversial topics and a new episode is published every Monday at 8 am GMT. A few topics that I have discussed are: growing up working class, body confidence, diversity in the blogging industry and mental health.
My podcast isn’t aimed at anyone in particular but the majority of my listeners are 18+. Take from my podcast what you will, I can guarantee that you will take away some form of education from the topics that I discuss and your mind will be opened to issues outside of your bubble.
If someone wanted to start their own podcast, what advice would you give them?
Just do it!
As cliche as it sounds, if you’re thinking about it and you’re passionate, start one now!
You don’t need fancy equipment so, stop waiting until you can afford a microphone. All you need is a phone, a quiet environment and the Anchor app to record.
Is there anything you’d like to work on/improve at the moment?
There is always something that you can work on and improve. I would like to work on my theme at some point. Following the Pipdig drama and hearing that Pipdig sites are being blacklisted or whatever, I think the best thing to do is move away from the company and either create my own theme or buy a budget one from Etsy.
How do you find inspiration for your content?
I used to look at other bloggers for inspiration but now I look at myself. I am my own inspiration. I’m competing with myself and my content now is current Fran looking back on content from past Fran and building on it.
Making the images better quality, making sure my writing flows better and that the content I am producing is content I too would read.
How will your content change with your move to York?
On September 14th, I will be packing up the last of my belongings and moving to York for 4 years to complete a degree. After (over) a year out of education, I think going back to university and working towards a career is the best option for me and what I want out of life.
My content is due to change as I will no longer be a girl on a gap year with plenty of free time. I will be a student in a completely new city with deadlines, exam stress, adjusting to being away from my family and learning to be more independent.
I plan on documenting it all so from August onwards expect to see a lot more of student content from IKEA hauls, how to write a personal statement to picking the right university to you. I wish someone had done posts like this when I was in sixth form so now I’m creating them and sharing my experience to help others.
If I were to do a part 3 of the Meet The Blogger series next year, what do you wish to have achieved by then?
Please do a part 3 of this series next year!
I love self-reflecting and reading back on what past Fran said and how current Fran has grown and matured since. A year from now, I hope to have successfully completed the first year of my degree, added a new niche to my blog (all will be revealed soon) and to continue working on my brand, improving my photography and writing style.
Thank you so much for letting me interview you again, Fran. I absolutely loved catching up with you and finding out more about you. Thank you for taking part in my Meet The Blogger series again.
As a blogger, are there any changes you want to make to your blog?