This Woman Can
Sarah is a professional writer based in Melbourne, Australia. She runs her own professional writing business and is releasing her new picture book (kids aged between 4 and 7) and a digital magazine, "This Woman Can".
Can you tell us more about your new digital magazine "This Woman Can?”
Sure. This Woman Can is for women who want to delve deeper than what we typically see covered in women’s magazines (e.g: 10 ways to shape your eyebrows, latest style trends etc). We are really going to be delving into the kind of topics that may not be easy to read about, but they’re the kind of things we’ve always wondered about or perhaps Googled. It’s a monthly digital magazine and each issue will have a theme and feature incredible men and predominantly women who have incredible stories to share. We’ve earmarked mid-February as our tentative launch date (everyone in this industry knows last minute hiccups can occur). Our first issue will have a ‘Love Yourself’ theme and showcase the stories of three incredible women. I know that women all around the globe will identify with at least one or all of these women in different ways and I think that’s the beauty of sharing your story.
What was the reason for starting it?
The idea for the magazine came at one of the lowest points in my life – I’d just quit my Comms/PR job to drive my professional writing business with 1 client (who was a friend!), I was a real newbie in terms of running the business itself and my closest relationships were tested because all of the change and transformation that was happening around me. I remember searching for stories about other women who’d been tested and had succeeded – just as a way of reassuring myself that it will all be okay in the end. I couldn’t find any… or maybe I was just looking in the wrong places. Also, This Woman Can is a celebration of something I’ve known for a long time but have always felt awkward about embracing and owning: I don’t fit in. These days, I love that I’m different and I know other women feel the same way – I really hope this magazine speaks to them.
You’re also launching a picture book in 2016. Where did your ideas for the picture book come from?
I find that some of my best and most creative ideas come to me when I’m out and about, walking (I do quite a bit of walking to clear my mind). I’d just attended a Young Women’s forum here in Melbourne, Australia so gender and stereotyping was on my mind. And then a name popped into my head: Willow Willpower. It was catchy and I liked it – I remember being so excited that I text messaged my mum to see what she thought and she agreed. From there, I went to my local library and spent quite a bit of time in the picture book section flipping through books before developing the ideas for the first book over a few months. The manuscript has changed so many times but at the end of the day, this book series is going to reiterate that it’s okay to be different and it’s going to dare kids to dream. It’s perfect for kids aged 4 to 7 and at this point, we’re looking at a May, 2015 launch date as I’ll be self-publishing the book.
Can you tell us more about Willow Willpower?
In many ways, Willow Willpower was born out of what I wish I could go back and tell myself as a young girl. She’s different and a real dreamer, something that her mother encourages. Willow is always dreaming and she doesn’t put any limitations on herself – the first book sees her exploring the idea of becoming a pilot. One thing that I really wanted to achieve with this picture book is ensuring that all of the characters – from Willow to her mother to any other characters added along the way – are all relatable for the average child and parent. Willow is the kind of kid who could grow up to be the next Sheryl Sandberg or Indra Nooyi or Angela Merkel.
How and when did you realise your passion as a writer?
I’ve always been a writer – even before I knew I could make a career out of it. I remember writing a story one day for Literature class and my teacher read it to everyone because it was a standout. That was the day that I became hooked on captivating people with my writing. When it came time to graduating and selecting my career, studying Journalism was a no-brainer but I always knew I wouldn’t be working as a full-time journalist. For me, writing isn’t about fancy words, perfect grammar or click rates: it’s about engaging people and crafting that one sentence or paragraph that has the power to change someone’s life, even in the smallest of ways.
More info about Sarah:
My website: www.sarahcannata.com.au
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