Hi lovely people,
Today on HC Humanize we have Daniel, a.k.a Mr. Chorizo! This interview is kind of special to me because I’ve actually met Daniel in person. But even cooler, before that, I was researching some info about moving to Madrid, and I came across his blog! So, he is kind of famous around here. Enjoy!
Name: Daniel Welsch
Blog: The Chorizo Chronicles
Everything you never wanted to know about expat life in Madrid.
About Daniel and his Blog
- When did you start blogging and why?
I wanted to make money from the beginning. I was teaching English, which I loved, but I figured out that I was basically going to be broke forever unless I came up with a Plan B. So I started blogging to try to build a name for myself as a teacher.
On the other hand, I’ve always had a need to express myself in one way or another, so I guess I use blogs to do that.
On my blog The Chorizo Chronicles, for example, I wanted to write about the other side of life in Spain: the political corruption, the economic crisis, immigration, and emigration. All the stuff the other bloggers don’t talk about.
That blog makes virtually no money, but it’s a lot of fun and puts me in contact with new people and new opportunities, so I’m going to keep at it.
- What topics does your blog cover?
My professional blogs started out being about English grammar and vocabulary, but these days I also do a lot of motivational stuff and encourage people to get out of their comfort zones – so many people learn English for years and are terrified to actually speak it, so I try to help with that.
And The Chorizo Chronicles, like I said, is about the parts of Spanish life nobody else wants to talk about – all the grit and grime. I like to talk about Spanish culture from a foreigner’s point of view, and sometimes that creates controversy, which is fun too.
Recently I’ve started blogging about blogging and I’ve even published a book called The Zen of Blogging which tells the story of how I went from broke English teacher to best-selling author and “digital nomad” of sorts.
- What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done?
I guess moving to Spain for a girl I’d only met twice was insane by any standards. And it could have gone badly, but it’s worked out great. Not the part with the girl, but the part where I’m a fully legal resident now, and very happy about it. I can’t complain at all.
- What’s your idea of a fun day?
Writing something that’s fun for a couple hours in the morning and having it turn out well.
Then, a boxing workout in Retiro – I’m there almost every Saturday training.
After that, a lunch with friends that unexpectedly transforms into lunch and cocktails and dinner and gets me home and exhausted in bed around 11 pm… so I can get up the next day to do it again!
- What’s your all-time favourite quote?
That’s really hard because I have dozens. But my favorite these days is the one by Steven Pressfield from The War of Art:
“Fear doesn’t go away. The warrior and the artist live by the same code of necessity, which dictates that the battle must be fought anew every day.”
I use it to remind myself that whatever success I had yesterday in my career as a writer and blogger, I still need to get up today and do the work. Can’t stop, won’t stop.
- Why do you travel?
I guess maybe you’re hoping for some sort of romantic reason…but I don’t have one. Originally I just wanted to see something outside of Arizona, so I started travelling around the US and Mexico.
These days I’m based in Madrid, so I travel around Spain and Europe to break up the routine of writing at home every day. So I go to nice places and end up writing in AirBnBs or hotel lobbies.
I also have some friends in other countries and I use any excuse I can to get together with them, in one place or another.
- Do you plan your trips ahead and if so, how?
I think most people make travel way more complicated than it is. My first trips were just me, a backpack and a Lonely Planet guide. Now we have the internet, but I still hardly do any research. I get a hotel on booking.com and a flight or train ticket, and I go. Once I’m “on the ground” I just take a walk around and figure out what the sights are.
- How do you pack for a trip?
Same thing as planning – I really don’t. I wake up an hour before I have to leave the house, dump a week’s worth of clothes into my suitcase, and get out the door. I usually end up forgetting some small thing, which I can always buy once I’m there.
- What is your favourite country to travel to and why?
Honestly, I just love travelling around Spain. There are so many great places to visit, and so much wonderful food and wine that I feel like I could spend a lifetime exploring it and not get bored. There are so many places I still haven’t been after 13 years that it drives me crazy!
Make sure you follow Daniel on social media! You won’t regret it, all of his content is very entertaining:)