What do you like about working in Norwich?
Can I say the cheap rent? Jokes aside, I moved back to Norwich earlier this year so I could focus on Akin. Moving to a place with cheaper rent definitely puts less pressure on me to earn a specific amount of money. I absolutely love the independent creative nature of Norwich – there’s so many creatives working for big clients and it’s quite inspiring to see that you don’t have to be in London to succeed. The mindset is just different around here; it’s a lot friendlier and people help each other out, which I missed while I was living in London.
Are you currently working on any personal projects? If so, how do you manage your time alongside other work?
I started Akin as a personal project last year. I felt like my work was getting a bit stagnant and I needed to create something new, so I launched a Kickstarter campaign, raised £2,776 (to be precise) and created the first issue. A year on and we have held numerous independent magazine pop-up shops, panel discussions and are now launching issue two. It’s evolved from a personal project to a self-sustaining business now, with all of the profits funding the next issue.
I went freelance quite slowly. In the beginning I went part-time at my job in London, commuting four days a week. I saved a bit of money and then bit the bullet in August and went full-time freelance.
What tools do you use most for your work?
It’s quite simple really: my Moleskine notebook, InDesign and my trusty Troika pen. It’s amazing – a ruler, screwdriver, pen and spirit level all in one. Technology, hey!
Is there a resource that has particularly helped you?
Something that really helped me during university was the Student Publication Association. SPA holds an annual conference for students running student magazines and papers, and it was the first time that I’d been around people who really reflected how I was feeling. I was editor of BUMF at the time (AUB’s Student magazine) and it was really eye-opening to see journalists and aspiring editors all in one room. I gave a talk there last year and I’m now a mentor for them.