This month I sat down with Maria Di Mario, a writer for Hubbub Labs. We spoke about creative writing, pottery, and the future of education, as well as the perks of being a content writer.
So, what is it you do here?
I’m a content writer for Hubbub Labs. Hubbub Labs is an agency that helps companies grow through content marketing.
What kind of content?
So, It’s mostly written content, working with educational companies and startups. My background is in education so I work for the educational side of things. For example, we’ve got some big multinational clients that are English teaching publishers so it’s blogs for them. They’re for teachers but also for learners too, so it’s a really nice mix of topics.
So do you get to learn while you’re writing?
Yeh, it’s really great. Lots of research as well which is really fun.
You mentioned a background in education, what is that?
I have a PhD in writing. I moved to Barcelona just after I finished my PhD and, like so many people, went into English teaching. I did that for a year and it was fun, but I quite quickly realised I didn’t want to pursue it long term. The school I was working for needed someone to do their social media marketing and run their website and blogs, so I moved into that. I did that for four years, so not directly teaching but in that environment.
How did you end up at Hubbub Labs?
Dan, the co-founder, had seen stuff I’d written for the company I was working for and he got in touch with me to see if I’d be interested in doing some work for Hubbub Labs as well. It was actually when I was on maternity leave, I came in for an interview and it was exactly what I’d been looking for. In my other job I was the entire marketing department, I didn’t work with anyone else. I did everything and I’d been looking to move somewhere where I’d be working with other people doing the same thing so I could learn from them and feel like part of a team.
Commit to the shift, huh?
Yeh, exactly, and when you work for one company doing all their marketing you end up stuck in a loop a little bit sometimes with the type of posts you’re doing. It’s great now because I work with a bunch of different clients and as part of a team. It’s so nice working with people that I can learn from.
What is it you’re working on right now?
Well, today I’m working on a post about changes to Cambridge Exams. In the last month I’ve been writing a variety of content for different companies but a lot of it seems to be about the future and how the world of employment is changing or is going to change, as well as automation and what that’s going to mean for the future of the job market. Also, how the education system needs to change and adapt in order to provide people with the skills that they need for that future. It’s really fascinating.
It sounds it! What about your passions?
Well, I love to cook; I always browse the recipe books here whilst I’m waiting for my lunch. It’s one of the things that I really enjoy about living here - that there’s so much seasonal produce in the shops and markets. I go to a pottery class as well; I haven’t been in a while but I love that.
What kind of stuff do you make?
So far just little bowls. It’s at this awesome studio in Raval. It’s a really cool space and they run great courses. They do wheel courses, they do handmade courses; you go along and somebody’s like ‘do this, do that’ so it’s quite hands-on.
Sounds good! Now, big question, where do you see yourself in 10 years?
In Barcelona; my partner’s Catalan and my baby’s in nursery. We’ve bought a house in Badalona so I’m here for the long run. Hopefully working in the same field, maybe spending some more time on my own writing.
Was it creative writing you studied?
Yes, I did. My thesis was a novel that was set during the Spanish Civil War. I never got it published but I’ve been writing short stories since that have been published and I’m working on something new at the moment. Again, I have a baby so it’s very slow; little increments, you know.
That’s very exciting. What about coworking, what was it that attracted you about it?
It’s Hubbub Labs that have a membership here, but I love it. I think it’s a really nice space, a great balance of stimulating patterns and textures but because of the colour palette it’s quite calming as well. I think my favourite thing about it is the natural light and the view of the trees. The office I worked in before was a similar kind of Hot Desk vibe but it was just quite cramped; you had to move around a lot and there wasn’t a tonne of natural light. I really liked the flexibility, but this is just a nicer environment. One of the reasons it’s so great for us is to be part of the coworking community is because there’s so many different startups and we work a lot with startups. It’s great being part of the community and all being in the same environment. It feels nice; nice and collaborative.
I feel that too. Well, great, I think that’s everything. Thanks for speaking with me today.
Of course, no worries.
Maria works from the Catedral Hot Desk areas when she’s around the offices, which is normally a Monday. If you’d like to get in touch with Maria, whether it be to discuss content writing or pottery, you can find her contact info below.