Business profile: Sarah Cannata, professional writer

It’s amazing how Twitter and social media in general can connect us. I was fortunate through my good friend and Twitter expert Keith Keller to be introduced to writer, Sarah Cannata. Sarah is a passionate writer who has recently given up the corporate world for the freedom of freelancing. I was of course all in favour of Sarah’s decision and have enjoyed comparing writing notes over the past few months. Learn more about Sarah and her journey into the realm of running her own business and being the boss.

SC1. Name: Sarah Cannata

2. Occupation/ business: Professional writer

3. Position: Founder and Director

4. Country of Residence: Australia (Melbourne)

5. Email/website: info@sarahcannata.com.au | www.sarahcannata.com.au

6. Social Media:

Twitter – https://twitter.com/CannataAU

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/sarahcannatawriter

LinkedIn – https://au.linkedin.com/in/sarahcannata

7. Give us your elevator pitch. What does your business do?

I specialise in working with entrepreneurs who are driven by a bigger vision than themselves by helping them to tell their stories and change lives.

HuffPost

  1. Why did you start your business?

I started my business because I have a true passion for storytelling and felt as though my gift was going to waste writing solely about products and services.

  1. What’s your passion?

Writing and helping people to share their stories that in turn, have the power to plant the seeds that help people to take positive steps to change their lives.

10. What do you love most about running your business?

It’s great to be able to call the shots without having to seek approval from others. Most importantly, I love not being solely focused on financial KPI’s. Yes, reality is I need to generate money, but I love being about to share stories that may have otherwise never been told.

When I get to the point of scaling my business and hiring employees, I have a very definite working environment that I’ll create. I want my employees to be engaged with what they’re doing and know that they can share their ideas and opinions freely. I want to create an atmosphere people can thrive in.

twitter

11. What are three difficulties you face in running your business?

1 – Time to do everything. There just aren’t enough hours in the day!

2 – Money. Who doesn’t experience this one as a start-up?

3 – Work/life balance – There isn’t much at this point!

12. What are three pieces of advice you would give to someone starting their own business?

1 – Know your numbers

2 – Have a plan and set specific goals for yourself

3 – Don’t take shortcuts! Doing so never ends well in the long run.

13. Tell us, with an anecdote, why your business has changed your life?

I remember going to a couple of businesswomen events while still employed. One was an ICMI conference that featured Carolyn Creswell (Carman’s Fine Foods) as the keynote speaker and the other was a Business Chicks breakfast where I heard Naomi Simson (Founder of RedBalloon) speak. I remember sitting back, looking on and totally admiring these passionate and driven women.

Since deciding to drive my own professional writing business, I’ve had the incredible opportunity to speak directly to each of them and write about them both. I even had a great chat to Carolyn for about 15 minutes over the phone recently.

My business has led to so many incredible opportunities that if I wasn’t living this experience myself, I wouldn’t believe it! I’m a regular Huffington Post contributor and one of my articles about a global multiple sclerosis conference went viral (over 8.2k Facebook Likes and over 5k re-tweets on Twitter), as did this exclusive. Best of all, renowned names such as Ben Angel are starting to take notice so I’m generating PR too.

Twitter1

14. How do you manage a work/life balance?

I’ll be honest: at this point, there isn’t much of a work/life balance taking place. I started my business a few months ago and it has been very intense. I’m blessed to have had some of the opportunities that have come my way. In saying that, I am trying to actively make time in my schedule to catch up with friends and I find jogging a big stress release. Regardless of what’s going on, I do make the time to exercise each day. Sitting at a laptop for hours on end isn’t healthy for anyone!

15.What movie most inspires you in running your business?

Jerry Maguire is a good one because its protagonist faces so many setbacks and who can forget the, ‘show me the money!’ quote. Although it has nothing to do with being an entrepreneur, I always identified with Buffy from Buffy: The Vampire Slayer because she faces some ridiculous odds and always manages to find a way to succeed. Not to mention, she is forced to make some decisions that take every strength of her character.

16. The best book to read before starting a business or when running a business?

Live What You Love by Naomi Simson – it’s a lot more than just a book. It includes tasks and exercised that force you to think about many things.

17. Your favourite inspiration/ motivation/ business quote?

You have to do what you dream of doing even while you’re afraid. – Arianna Huffington

18. The 4 words that best describe your business?
Dynamic, energetic, fun, passionate.

Business Profile: Amy Darcy – Owner Blog: Eat, Pray, Workout

Introducing the wonderful Amy Darcy, owner and writer at the blog Eat, Pray, Workout. Amy and I met through the #WVABloggers program with World Vision Australia. Amy is a passionate blogger, keen to share her tips and tricks to a healthier, happier you! I’m enjoying following Amy’s journey and picking up some great bits of info along the way.

Meet Amy!

Eat Pray Workout Brunetti Melbourne CBD amy coffee

  1. Name; Amy Darcy
  2. Business: Blogger, Eat Pray Workout
  3. Position: Editor and owner
  4. Country of Residence: Australia
  5. Contact Amy: amy@eatprayworkout.com
    Website: www.eatprayworkout.com
    Instagram: @eatprayworkout
    Twitter: @eatprayworkout
    FB: www.facebook.com/eatprayworkout
    Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/eatprayworkout
  6. Give us your elevator pitch. What does your business do?

Through Eat Pray Workout I aim to inspire and encourage people to live a balanced lifestyle filled with friends, fun, nourishing food and fitness. These topics are interweaved with my honest daily encounters; with the goal of seeking blessings in every situation. I’m an Australian lawyer, socialite, traveller, Jesus lover, army wife, gym junkie wanna-be and healthy cook.

IMG_1164

7. Why did you start your business?

It started as quite a personal blog, almost a journal updating friends and family who lived in Sydney (if you want a laugh, I dare you to scroll through and read my first few posts – shocking and compare them with more recent ones!). You see I married in January 2012 and moved from Sydney to Brisbane. At the time I was studying like crazy at uni, gym obsessed and working at a law firm. I really had no other hobbies and it was beginning to wear me down. I realised I had no hobbies that weren’t ‘work’ when we were home for Christmas in 2012 and I had nothing to do whilst my husband and his brothers played Nintendo (it’s a brother only thing apparently, haha). From there I watched many tutorials and set up my blog. I soon fell in love with the creativity it was allowing me to express through my writing, cooking and photography. It has continued to grow and I have big plans for the future. Right now thought, it is an online hub for people to relax, be inspired and realise that healthy living isn’t that hard, in fact it can be fun!

8. What’s your passion?

My passion is encouraging others to be the best that they can in a stress and pressure free manner. I’m also a Christian, so I am pretty passionate about learning from God’s guidance and occasionally these themes or life lessons will flow through on the blog. It has been excellent to engage with others over lifestyles, perspectives and how to best love and look after one another.

BEST-2

9. What do you love most about running your business?

Getting emails or comments from readers sharing their own life stories or questions with me. What a privilege!

10. What are three difficulties you face in running your business?

    1. Money – so far my small income hardly pays for the changes I need to my site let alone to create products and services for my readers.
    2. Uncertainty – do I really want to be a full time blogger or should I continue with law?
    3. Comparison – so many other blogs are bigger than mine, will my blog make a difference?

      1-Cinnamon-Almond-Banana-Smoothie-Eat-Pray-Workout

11. What are three pieces of advice you would give to someone starting their own business?

    1. Believe in yourself
    2. Network for support – join likeminded Facebook groups or forums
    3. Have a biz buddy – one to bounce ideas around with. Make sure they are honest if you are an optimist like me, you may need to be brought down to earth occasionally.

12. How do you manage a work/life balance?

I’m still working on this especially as working on the blog full time is a particularly new thing and my list of things to do is a mile long. However, I am working towards set working hours and only checking social media at certain times – particularly avoiding it when with family so they can have the focus they need.

13. What movie most inspires you in running your business?

Legally Blonde was my inspiration for becoming a lawyer and I think Elle Wood’s general optimistic, fun and determined character is still inspiring. Ok, lets be honest, I have been so busy with study at uni the last 6.5 years, moving, getting married, running a blog, attending church and it’s events and looking after a dog that I find it hard to just sit still to watch a movie…it’s bad but I kind of see it as a waste of time…so I really don’t know many because I rarely watch them!

IMG_1152

14. The best book to read before starting a business or when running a business?

Not sure, haven’t read any about it! Unfortunately law and work killed the joy of reading for me and I felt guilty if I wasn’t reading a text book. I’m more of an all in and discover along the way kind of girl anyway.

15. Your favourite inspiration/ motivation/ business quote?

Stress is like a rocking chair, it gives you something to do but gets you nowhere.

16. The 4 words that best describe your business?

Healthy, realistic, balanced, fresh.

Sponsorship and Support through Fitness for Emma Lovell, #Everestbasecamptrek2015

Big thank you to Shawana Dillard Reisner of #LightenUpWithShawana who is helping me with my #Everestbasecamptrek2015 fundraising!

shawana 3
She’ll be promoting my cause and donating funds from her programs to the fundraising page. What a lovely idea, pay it forward. You can learn more about the trek and my fundraising here:
https://everest2015.everydayhero.com/au/emma-takes-on-the-best-trek-everest

Here is what Shawana has to share:

Life is full of beauty and everyday heroes. I was extremely inspired by Emma’s goal to climb Mount Everest, but I was even more impressed and touched by her efforts to help the communities of Nepal through her number one Charity World Vision Australia! Emma is using Focus T25 and P90X as part of her training to climb Mount Everest.

Because I love to pay it forward and help others through health and fitness I have decided to donate $10.00 for anyone who gets started on their fitness journey through me by purchasing a challenge pack. A challenge pack includes a workout program and 30 days’ supply of dense superfood all natural nutrition, a workout calendar, me as your personal coach, and 30 days to our website for free for extra fit tips and food ideas.

Shawana walks the walk and talks the talk
Shawana walks the walk and talks the talk

I will personally help you find the RIGHT workout program for your specific goals, help get you started on your journey, and help you reach your goals. You do not have to live locally, or be on social media, but it would be best if you have Facebook so you can partake (if you like) in one of my fun accountability groups for extra support, motivation, and fun. The groups help keep you going along your fitness journey. As your coach I will be there for YOU every step of the way.

If you want to get started on your fitness journey and pay it forward at the same time. You can contact me on:

Facebook at facebook.com/shawana.dillardreisner 

Email at: shawanadillard05@gmail.com
Website: www.lightenupwithshawana.com 

Huge thank you to Shawana for all her support thus far and really, I can highly recommend these amazing products! I’m getting fit and strong and can’t wait to take on Everest! 

shawana

I’m climbing to Mt Everest Base Camp on March 7, 2015. Sponsor me and support the work of World Vision Australia. https://everest2015.everydayhero.com/au/emma-takes-on-the-best-trek-everest. You can follow our adventure on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram with the hash tag #everestbasecamptrek2015 and by following @inspiredadvntrs – www.inspiredadventures.com.au. Thank you for your support!!

 

For more photos of my adventures, please do follow me on instagram @Lovellyem and follow my Twitter account @ Lovellyinc.

Posted by Emma Lovell, Director of Lovelly Communications

Help this inspiring woman Kristen Briggs in “Women of the Future” Competition – Vote for her!

 

Incredible to see inspiring friends of ours taking on new and exciting challenges around the World. Kristen Briggs is an awesome intrepid traveller. She’s been to more countries than we can count and she works for an amazing company, Inspired Adventures. She helps people everyday to raise $1000’s for charity.

 

kristen briggs

 

She is now in a competition to WIN $1000’s which she will donate to a huge project in Philippines which will change lives!

 

Here are the details in Kristen’s own words. We hope you can take the time to click the link to The Australian Women’s Weekly competition and help her WIN!

 

From Kristen Briggs,

 

Hi everyone,

 

 

 

Ive been selected as a semi-finalist for the The Australian Women’s Weekly ‘Women of the Future’ award and I need your help to win the readers choice prize.

 

 women of future

 

Earlier this year I went on a medical mission with Operation Newface and I met a 17-year-old boy who had worn a bandana around his face his whole life because he was ashamed of his lip. I went and watched his operation and to see his whole life transform was amazing.

 

 

 

If I win $20,000 will go to Operation Newface Philippines Inc. helping them continue operating on people that have cleft lip and cleft palate in the Philippines.

Please help by registering your votes here – http://bit.ly/1tvD1gH

There are no restriction as to the number of votes permitted per day per person. If everyone could share and vote for me as much as possible and ask your friends and family to do the same it would be greatly appreciated. Voting for the Reader’s Choice prize closes on August 27, 2014.

Thanks for your support in helping keep my dream alive.”

 

VOTE now and let’s see what amazing things Kristen can do next!

 

How to use your story to inspire others

You can use your story to Inspire others. You can come from a difficult place and turn it around. This is what Trevor Brown did, and now he is sharing his story. This is how Director Emma Lovell came to know this story and be inspired. 

One day in Melbourne I was catching a tram as I did perhaps 3 or 4 times a week to get into the city. You sit down, play on your phone, talk to your friend or generally go about your own business. Occasionally someone sits near you and smiles or says something. This day, Trevor Brown sat down with me and my friend and started chatting with us. Little did I know that this would forhttps://lovellycommunications.files.wordpress.com/2014/08/img_1226.jpgm a digital friendship and I would be eager to learn more and more about his story.

In our brief 10 minute ride, Trevor told us that he had been homeless. He was so open and honest about it. He was also very proud to tell us that he was now a published writer and handed me his business card. As a fellow writer, this was something I was certainly interested to learn. From appearances, you would never know that he had once lived below the line and had struggled to re-build. Now, he wants to share his story and help others. 

Trevor Brown

The lease I can do is share his story here. These are the words of Trevor Brown:

“Just a brief information about my history..

I was homeless living inside my small van for six years from 2008 to 2013, with five of those years basically on the streets of Melbourne. During my first year up in the bush area of North East Victoria I battled against depression and nearly stepped of the planet, I just wasn’t happy….during what I call my darkness zone a story was sparked and run through my head and I started writing it. At the time I didn’t rate my writing…. That’s my first book I’m still writing only a few thousand words to go and why I thought about becoming a writer….

Last year 2013, I headed back to school to do my VCE (Year12) course and about this time of the year the editor of the “Big Issue” magazine advised that he wanted to publish my article about my time on the streets, this become my first article, the first page of my folio.

Now I have had 4 article published in the Big Issue, a couple of other articles published in other magazines and a couple of weeks ago was broadcast on the Big Idea program on ABC National radio talking about “Social Inclusion in learning” 
Anyway I finished another article yesterday about a homeless guy who was murdered and how many people came together to remember him last week in the city the editor has already responded that he likes my article….
Trevor Brown Article
 
 
I may be again on the radio in a couple of months….2014 is starting to shape up nicely and remember this time last year I was still in my van on the streets….Now I don’t even have my van…or anything parked in the driveway.
Anyway that’s just a bit of info…As for my art, I use it drawings and painting to have somewhere else to throw my creativeness and it helps me write…Over Christmas I also did some street art in the middle of Melbourne…
Anyway Not sure if this is the type of info you wanted, but that’s my part my story anyway….
I’m only starting out but as I said when my first article was published, “Everyone who has ever gotten anywhere started with ‘one thing’ and this may just be my ‘one thing”…time will tell.”
 
Thank you for your story Trevor, and I think this quote is for you!
 inspiration
 
 

Working with DWA – Disabled Wintersports Australia

We would like to thank Disabled Wintersports Australia (DWA) for their wonderful recommendation.

“Emma selflessly helped Disabled Wintersport Australia with it’s social media campaign. Her patience in explaining this platform and the ability to tailor the business plan for us was outstanding. Her product knowledge and clear communications are key in really understanding the wants and needs of an organisation. I look forward to working with Emma again in the future.” – Phill Schofield – Communications Coordinator/NSW Program Coordinator (Winter).

DWA logo

Lovelly Communications offered our services to DWA for the set up of a social media program for their organizations activities. This was a pro bono offering to help this incredible organization better promote themselves to the online market and raise more awareness.

 

DWA is an organisation with a national perspective taking responsibility for development of disability winter sport in Australia. Through building the capability and capacity of a National Sport System, including accountability at the National level, we provide members with technically sound sports programs, policies and service.

 anthony

Lovelly Communications own Emma Lovell became a volunteer in 2013 and was taken by the amazing work that DWA did. It’s a highly accessible program for people of all voluntary abilities but predomaninantly gives those who love snowsports a way to give back using their skills and passion in the snow. It is a hands on approach to helping those who would otherwise not be able to experience the snow.

 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

We look forward to seeing more of the wonderful work of DWA and offering our services to help them with further promotion of their wonderful organization.

Working with Copywrite Matters

We met the delightful Belinda Weaver at a networking event in Melbourne for writers. A great conversation, shared passion for the written word and a few laughs led to a working relationship. It was a delight to work with Belinda who knows exactly where her business is going and she shows that passion in every contract she takes on.

CM_MASTER_logo

This is the recommendation she kindly shared for Lovelly Communications:

“I worked with Emma as part of a project for my business, Copywrite Matters. The client needed website copywriting that enticing, persuasive and very search engine friendly and Emma achieved all three. I was proud to have her work associated with Copywrite Matters.”

– Belinda Weaver – Copywrite Matters

We highly recommend getting in touch with Copywrite Matters for sharp, creative and engaging copy!

“Good copywriting talks to people, heart to heart, and that’s what Copywrite Matters helps you do. We will help you find the voice of your business and create engaging, action focused copywriting that speaks directly to your customers, and gets them to act.

You’ll get more clicks, calls and sales with the right words. It’s that simple!”

And of course my website address is: http://www.copywritematters.com.au/
belinda