And once again, we find that the month has already flown by with the first half of the year mark nearly upon us as we leave May and arrive in June. For this Fan Talent section, this might appeal to those who are currently undergoing self-study in a language of their preferred choice (in particular those interested in learning Korean or Japanese).

The person who is behind all the Facebook page and blog is called Nikki, which as you could already tell from the title of this post is ‘Hart to the Seoul’ which is a interesting play on words!

She offers people the chance to improve their learning of Korean through her blog posts and Facebook page updates, with a few example pictures shown below, the links to the mentioned sites are at the bottom of the page to see the rest!

We were able to do a Q&A with Nikki, which we would like the take the opportunity to thank her for her time and thoughtful answers. So without further ado, here’s all the answers Nikki gave which includes what prompted her interest in languages, how she remains motivated in her self-study journey and all the tips for those interested in taking up learning Korean or Japanese with a number of helpful links to resources available!

















1. Please give a brief introduction of yourself to those who may not know you!

Ok! Hello! My name is Nikki Hart, I’m a language nerd and I am a student in England! I have fallen in love with language learning since right at the beginning of 2013 when I started studying my first every language, Korean. I am studying Korean and Japanese currently but I tend to dip in and out of French, Chinese, and Italian. Language learning has changed my life as I have connected with so many more people from all over the world. I’m so glad it is a part of my life and I love sharing that through my blog and my new Instagram!

2. What would you say was the first thing that captured your attention to languages?

I’ve always thought of speaking other languages as such an amazing thing. I only got exposed to foreigners when I was 15 as we started to get eastern European students joining our secondary school. After now having spent some time really looking into other languages, with each of them it feels like going into another world. It’s amazing.

3. What made you want to start up your own blog and language page on Facebook?

I started my blog in August of 2013 where I wanted to share my thoughts and feelings of language learning and my progress. I then had the idea of writing a series of blogs where I would share the resources I use. For a long time my blog’s aim was to be of help to anyone learning Korean but it was also just for logging my own progress, like a diary. I recently gave it a new look and I have new goals for my blog. These are my 3 basic missions.

1- Blog about my thoughts and progress in the languages I am learning.

2- Be a source for sharing sites for the languages: Korean, Chinese, French, Japanese and Italian.

3- Teach small phrases of things that I pick up. At the moment it is mainly Korean as that is my main language on this site.

4. If you could learn any language in the world, what would it be and why?

The languages that I’ve listed as my current interests are Korean, Japanese, French, Chinese and Italian. I’ve studied them all a small amount. I really want to learn all of them definitely but for one language it would have to be Korean. I could have chosen French or Chinese because then I would be able to understand and communicate with more people but I really love the Korean language and I want to be totally fluent in that one day! I am studying really hard to get that point as soon as possible.

5. Following that question, where would you want to visit if you had the opportunity?

Eventually I want to experience everything. I love new things and the world is so diverse and amazing. At the moment, along with my self-study Japanese studies, I have been looking more into Japan and is looks amazing and I’ve seen images that are just absolutely beautiful so I want to visit Japan someday and talk to some locals!

6. How do you stay motivated when learning languages as some people often fall at the initial hurdle and don’t always keep on learning?

At the beginning, it was the surprisingly ridiculous amount of motion that I had found in me and the fact that I had finally found something I am really passionate about is what keeps me motivated. That was when I knew languages was my thing.

Of course I think finding a good resource to learn from, finding a drama or TV show to get into and finding things that you can start to put in your daily life and submerse yourself is important. It’s almost like trying to replicate the experience of being in that country but without watching current TV shows or following the media in that country, you will probably lose your motivation very quickly. Another thing is the people around you, either having a friend in real life who can really help you with the language learning and introducing you to TV shows, movies and music is great, but like me, if everything has to be done online then try to keep in contact with natives or other learners who are just as keen as you to keep each other motivated and swap tips and phrases etc.

7. What is it about Korean and Japanese that stood out to you amongst all the other languages of the world?

The writing systems. I love it! When I started with Korean, I had never ever known anything like hangeul and it felt so cool to be able to read in a secret language, it felt like. I love the way the sentences are constructed too! It’s like just mix and match different endings to change the meaning and sometimes it seems like leggo blocks! It’s so cool!

8. Any tips for those learning languages independently?

1 – Try to replicate the experience of being in that country as much as you can and try to expose yourself to as much listening, watching people speak as well, pay attention to the way they act when speaking.

2 – Find a good resources

3 – From my experience, penpals have been a small part of my language learning as keeping in contact is very difficult and some people just aren’t online to talk as much as I am so it can get quite difficult. But I think the penpal experience is much better video chatting or voice chatting rather than just text.

9. Are there any websites or books you would like to recommend to people who would like or are currently studying Korean or Japanese?

Yes! There are so many good resources people have put so much hard work into to teach for free. I will mention TTMIK as they are the most popular and they are very very good! I would also like to mention some ones that not many people are going to know but are great in my opinion.

Korean {Those interested in Korean language materials}

How to Study Korean – “Everything you need to learn Korean” (really)


GoBillyKorean – YouTube

‘Catch the Wave’ with Adrien Lee & Hyunwo Sun – ‘Talk to Me in Korean’  – Check out the other episodes there are so many!

Hart to the Seoul (Nikki’s personal blog) – How to be fluent in Korean for free *this is my series on all the resources I’ve shared about learning Korean*. Sorry there is no Japanese but as I study more and more I will post a Japanese series!


Japanese: {Those interested in Japanese language materials}

Guide to Japanese

Hangukdrama – Japanese language resources

10. For those who may be unmotivated and unable to keep on persevering with learning their chosen language, what advice would you have for them?

Well I think you have to really have a passion for the language to be prepared for the journey of learning a new language because, it is hard, but set yourself small goals that you can achieve in a short amount of time so then you won’t feel that it’s too hard, which lessens the chances of you giving up. You have to be able to put a lot of time into it too. Also don’t be scared to use it and practise with it. Native speakers respect people who are learning their language and it is so rewarding in the end trust me! Learning a language really does change your life!


On a last note, there’s also another awesome language site I’ve personally found to be useful, I’ve recently been trying to learn the Korean alphabet with the help of the site – Memrise, I learn through repetition and memorization, here’s the link for anyone interested!

All the links you’ll need if you want to keep updated with Hart to the Seoul!
Personal Blog


About Author

UnitedKpop Writer since 2015, partial to listening to 2NE1 and BLACKPINK.