Friday, September 9, 2016

My Blogging Story ☉ ω ~

Hey everyone! (Let's pretend I haven't been M.I.A for a month and continue on like usual hehe) It's been a hectic few weeks, as I've finished my semester exams and am wrapping up work placement as well. I can't wait for the weekend when I'll be enjoying some snow, sun and skiing :D 

I've been having some writers block recently. Or creators block? Even Youtube videos are struggles - though maybe that's because I'm running low on time. Time is such a precious resource, I've realised :S There are simply not enough days in the week to do everything that I want and achieve everything I set out to achieve. Anyway, despite there being a couple of things that need reviewing, I've decided to just write from the heart once again and take you guys through my blogging journey, since I know most of you may have joined on midway or recently. 

I started blogging in Year 10. But it was not initially Heylinni that I started out on. When I began blogging, it was my friend, Celine who raised the idea of doing a fun blog together. I remember that day pretty clearly LOL. It was when I was in New York on a school art tour and she was probably pretty bored lmao. But yeh, we posted on that blog together (i think it was called rachelandceline or something). It was pretty fun cos I got to shoot some noob outfit shots in America, whilst she was in Sydney blogging about her hauls and food. While it was fun, we were only in Year 10 and we had the attention span of a hyperactive doge, so we quickly drifted out of it and that blog became quite inactive. 

omg hehe i look so young and kawaiii

Now equipped with my first blogging experience under my belt, it wasn't until the end of that year where I decided to try again. I was really into Tumblr back then and had some experience with posting photos, gathering a following etc. In fact, I forgot to mention, Celine and I also had a Tumblr back in Year 9! We posted kfashion and ulzzang pics and I spent a LOT of time learning photoshop and editing those photos with filters to enhance the colours. At first it looked really bad, but with practice, I seemed to know what to do and the pics started getting hundreds of reblogs and we gained 2k+ followers quite quickly (but then ofc we got lazy again hahah). Anyway, at the end of Year 10, I started my own little blog and I thought I was soooo alternative back then, so I called it "Just another ordinary girl". HAHAH CLICHE AF. I cringe thinking about it. My banner consisted of several selfies I took on Photobooth. I can't even remember what I posted there, but I'm pretty sure it was some embarrassing stuff. Thank goodness I cannot locate that blog anymore!! 

these were pics on our blog hehe

So after that, I went on my merry way for a while, just studying and being extremely normal. But then my friend introduced me to Instagram. I was quite a late bloomer in terms of getting into Instagram - I think I only made an account near the end of Year 11? I used to post the most random, pointless pictures of the sky...of froyo... filtering it as much as I could just because the Instagram filters were new and fun then hahah. After a little while, I got really into it and I edited my pictures better, with more crispness. Then one day, I got a notification on my Instagram account from Wengie, who funnily enough is now one of the biggest Australian youtubers. Back then, she had liked one of my pictures and I went to her page and was looking through all of hers. I think she had around 10k followers then? Of course, I followed her and I'm pretty sure being the noob I was, I asked her to follow me too just because I was so in awe and wanted to stay in touch. Luckily, she's a pretty nice person, so she did lol. Anyway, from there, I found out she had a blog and I checked it out. What she was doing looked like so much fun and that was when I got re-inspired to try blogging again too! 

This time, I put SO much effort into the design of my blog. My first iterations were quite simple, since I didn't really know html or css. But I attempted to at least make the images clear and aesthetic. In deciding my blog name, I had no ideas. It was only one day, when my friend (also) Rachel and I were thinking about potential names for clothing stores, she suggested to me, "Hey Linni!" The reason behind this is because my last name is Lin, so it just fit and flowed. I was like, 'Wow! How catchy!" haha and from then, I became Heylinni :P Interesting right?? 

i CANNOT believe i did my makeup and photoshopped myself to look like this *cringe

Anyway, I started off blogging about really random topics. Anything I could think of pretty much. I had a Polaroid review, blogged about normal days I had, food photos... etc. It was a lot of fun and I felt really good whenever I saw that I had even one view on my blog - even though I'm pretty sure those views came from just my best friends hahah (i love you guys!). Slowly, by writing more, I gained more views and more followers. I never envisioned or knew that companies actually advertised through sponsoring reviews on blogs! It was only until I researched around and wanted to find out more about how to grow my blog that I discovered lots of people did sponsored reviews. 

Now, here's a secret I'm pretty sure most bloggers don't tell you. In the beginning, I assumed companies would just email me and ask me to review their products. But that was naive. Do you really think a company is going to find your tiny, little blog out of millions of others? Definitely not. Instead, I decided to put myself out there and I emailed a few smaller companies, asking them if they did collaborations. Most of the time, I got rejected. Obviously, my 50 follower reader base was WAY too small to make any impact. But I think it was this Facebook store called AUS SHOPPING SPREE that gave me a chance and agreed to send me a few products. I was beyond excited. This was my very first review and I couldn't believe that I was actually getting sent free stuff. My first review was for some face masks and I had so much enthusiasm and put a lot of effort into creating that post. I remember even drawing a star system to rate different aspects of the mask! 

I think somewhere between this time, I properly met Wengie. That is something that I have been extremely grateful for through blogging. The fact that it gave me the chance to extend my networks and meet people that I initially met online was really mind-blowing. I had been reading her blog pretty consistently and she was just starting her Youtube channel. One day, she made a call out on her blog for backup dancers, to help her make a video for her music channel. Obviously, being a young one, I asked my mum first for permission AHHAHA but then I just commented that I could do it and she invited me to meet the rest of the dancers. To be honest, I'm not a good dancer...but I just saw it as a fun opportunity to meet people. We had a couple of dance practices and I'm glad to say that I managed to get through it without embarrassing myself majorly. The day of filming was so fun! Our little team got so close in just one day and I had such an enjoyable time. When the video came out on Youtube, a lot of people criticised Wengie, because she's not a professional singer. Honestly, I didn't think it was really fair because she was doing it for fun and the overall creation of the video was such a rewarding learning experience. But, this is the real world. I guess that people always have something to complain about and some people just like to put others down because there is the opportunity to do it easily. 

yay this was a great day

Anyway, when I hit 100 followers on my blog, I started gaining some traction. I was then invited to my very first event, the Dove Colour Live event, when I was in Year 12! It was held by Nuffnang Australia and was a tonne of fun. We learnt from experts about our complementary colours for hair and hair care. I also met a lot of other bloggers, including Sherina (Miss-Sennnaa), AnnieO, Chaigyaru etc. but never really stayed in touch with most of them, except Sherina :) At the end of the event, we were given a goody bag with Dove products and I was amazed - I showed my my mum that night and we got so excited together hahaha 

my face round in comparison to everyone else

So as the years have gone by, I can't believe it's been almost 4 years since I started blogging and I've reached around 650 followers. That's just crazy to think about. And a lot has changed! I'm SO grateful for all the opportunities I've been given and I'm pretty ashamed to say that I haven't shown my proper appreciation to my readers. I'm fairly sure more than half of you are inactive by now because of my lack of posting and my laziness. I'm going to try my best to find that flame for blogging again, that love and vitality I had in the beginning is something that I just took for granted. But with uni commitments, my Youtube channel now, and life to worry about, it's hard to make promises. I'm always going to think of this blog as a part of me, my creative little space to stow away when things get too stressful and too real. I've shed blood, sweat and tears on this blog so even though I might disappear every now and then to attend to the drab obligations of reality, I will never give up on "Smiling everyday with Heeyyyylinni!" 

Love you guys
xx Heylinni  
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  1. totally love your eye makeup
    keep in touch

  2. Sounds like you have been busy. Have a great weekend.

  3. What a nice blog entry! I'm really jealous that you got to meet Wengie, too hahaha
    She's one of my favorite youtubers/bloggers.
    I haven't been really active on my blog these months, so I kind of know how it feels when the remorse tries to bite you in the butt (lol).
    I'd be happy to read more on your blog again, soon... but I also know how busy life gets sometimes, so don't feel pressured too much :)

    1. thanks!
      yeah, it's really difficult :( because i want to spend all my time writing and creating content but life gets in the wayyyy

  4. I love hearing how bloggers first started and it's super cool how you got to meet Wengie wuahh~ photoshop is always fun to play around with haha

    Mish ♥ Mishs Diary