Women supporting women… Sarah’s mission is to empower women and young people by sharing stories. Read more about her journey here.
I’m Sarah, a passionate storyteller
I’ve always known that I wasn’t quite like everyone else, even as a kid. One of my earliest memories was telling my parents I was going to be the first female AFL footballer when I grow up (it’s our national game that is typically played by men, for those who aren’t from Australia). Back then, that wasn’t really an option but in 2017, it definitely is for the younger generation. I like to think I’ve always been ahead of the times.
So who am I? I am a big daydreamer but I’ve never been afraid to get my hands dirty to transform a dream into reality. I’m ambitious, hard working and I always remember being able to write pretty effortlessly (unlike dealing with numbers, let’s not talk about numbers). I lead with compassion, empathy and determination. A self-confessed introvert, I’m far better at listening than talking and I’ve taken my fair share of calculated leaps of faith in my time. As for my gut instinct, it never lets me down.
I have a Bachelor of Journalism and over 7 years’ worth of experience in Communications. My career began writing about movies and editing a magazine as I worked my way up to earn the promotion that would allow me to obtain the corporate role that I so desperately wanted at the time. After a lot of dedication, which involved working pretty much 24/7 (I don’t recommend it) and excelling in my field and the business I worked in for 5 years, I was offered what I felt was the dream role. Higher pay, more opportunities, less workload… the only problem was that I was miserable and bored.
It was then that I discovered entrepreneurship (it wasn’t really a career option when I was growing up) and soon enough, I’d handed in my resignation to start my own professional writing business. I had zero experience in running a business and it was a pretty bold move. But in my books, there’s nothing worse than feeling empty and hollow because you know you’re capable of so much more. I knew that the next chapters of my story would be very different.
Fast-forward almost 3 years and here I am. I’ve continued honing my skills in Communications and have extensive experience in Public Relations (PR). I’ve been published in The Huffington Post, Mamamia, The Age, Women’s Agenda, Kochie’s Business Builders, SBS Online and have helped many clients, working across numerous industries, to share their stories with the media.
When I was transitioning from my former role into running my own business, I yearned to read stories from women who I could relate to. People who had faced their fair share of challenges and who were stronger because of it. I couldn’t find these stories anywhere so I set out to create that very platform with This Woman Can. This site has been a work in progress for the last couple of years but I’m incredibly proud of the number of women who we’ve helped to give a voice to and empowered by enabling them to share their stories with our audience.
In the early days of my business, I remember walking one day (walking is a big stress relief for me) and as I turned the corner on my usual route, the name ‘Willow Willpower’ came to mind. Out of the blue, just like that. A few hundred text messages later to my mum (who is always willing to be honest and tell me if an idea isn’t as great as I think it is) and I had dreamed up a story about a young but strong girl with massive dreams. A girl who other children could look up to and say, “I want to be exactly like Willow Willpower when I grow up!” The rest is history and my first picture book, Willow Willpower, will be available online and in book stores soon.
For me, this story is about so much more than writing a picture book. When I was young, there were few (if any) young female characters who drove a book’s storyline. We had princesses who all looked the same, girls who were inevitably rescued by someone else… you get the gist. When I close my eyes and think of parents and loved ones reading Willow Willpower to their children, I think of the power that this book has to ignite the dreams of tomorrow’s leaders. The kind of dreams that have the chance to make the world a better place for everyone. This book showcases a female leader who’s not afraid to work towards what makes her happy and who really believes that with willpower and hard work, anything is possible. And that makes me proud.
Over the last few years, so much has changed but then again, so much hasn’t. I’m still always thinking about the next big thing and how I can be a better leader and assist others to showcase their stories so that they can grow and their business can realise its full potential.