Feature image: Martine Rose via Instagram
For many of us, the thought of juggling a startup business while studying a double degree at University seems impossible.
Sure, there are things we wish we had the time for- we may want to begin a blog or a business on the side – placing the stepping stones for our future career aspirations.
However, it seems unmanageable when we’re swamped with assignments and trying to fulfil the demands of a part-time job.
But for 21-year-old Deakin student Martine Rose, the frenzy has been rewarding in the launch of her online magazine, Floribunda.
I sat down with the young writer to talk about how she balances Uni, work and why it’s been worthwhile following her dreams.
Tell us a bit about the idea for your magazine, Floribunda.
“The basic idea behind Floribunda Magazine is to put positive, creative vibes out to people. A lot of news articles and gossip magazines lately have been full of dreary, quite saddening stuff, so I really wanted to flip that on its head. I want Floribunda to be a place where ‘small’ writers/artists have a chance to express themselves and make themselves known.”
What is your magazine about and who is the demographic you are trying to reach?
“This question stumps me every time, I honestly don’t know who my demographic is. I would say people aged 18-30, but I have had submissions from people older than that, so I guess everyone and anyone who wants to have a read of it. Floribunda’s main concept is to be an ‘art’ magazine, there is a big focus on our feature artists, writing publications and even playlists and recipes. If it’s something creative, you’ll probably find it in Floribunda.”
What was the inspiration behind the name of your magazine?
“The name Floribunda came to me one night (after a glass or two of wine) when I decided to throw caution to the wind and just start the magazine. But obviously, the first thing I needed was a name. I started my sitting on google translate, just translating random words into French and Spanish, but nothing stood out to me. Then I decided to look through a list of rose types. Roses have been of great significance in my life, as it was my great-grandmothers favourite flower, my gran is called Rose and it’s also my mum’s favourite flower. So I was scrolling down the list of flowers and I saw the name Floribunda and I instantly fell in love.”
Is your magazine available in both print and online formats?
“Unfortunately, at the moment it is only available online, but we are hoping to eventually have a print version available.”
When did you first decide you wanted to start your own magazine?
“I think starting my own magazine has always been an idea I’ve had in the back of my head, because I’ve always loved buying and reading magazines, but it was probably the end of last year was when I really just decided to go for it!”
Have you always wanted to be a writer?
“I think somewhere deep down, I’ve always wanted to be a writer. My main passion has always been reading, from as far back as I can remember my mum used to take me to the library once a week and I would take a few books out on loan.”
Has it been difficult balancing starting up your own magazine and company whilst studying at Deakin?
“It’s been a rollercoaster! I’ve only recently learned how to schedule social media and blog posts, which has made it so much easier, but it’s still really tricky, especially when I have assignments due for uni.”
What types of stories do you publish?
“We publish all sorts of stories! From fantasy to mental health, my main goal is to keep the magazine inclusive and interesting!”
How successful has your magazine been so far?
“So far it’s been mildly successful, but it’s only been running for a couple of months, but I’m working pretty hard to build a big Floribunda community of creative and interesting people who can submit to and read the magazine!”
What advice would you give aspiring writers who wish to start their own business?
“Go for it! But also, planning is your best friend! I have all of my social media posts and blog posts all planned out and I will usually schedule them to post for me so that if it’s coming up to assignment time, it’s one less thing to think about.”
How can D*scribe readers read the latest issue and any back-issues of Floribunda?
“All of our links to the magazine and blog are on our Facebook page.”
Can other students studying creative writing submit their stories to Floribunda?
“Definitely! We love receiving submissions of writing, especially from students!”
Can D*scribe readers follow Floribunda on social media?
Submissions for upcoming issues of Floribunda can be sent to Martine at firstname.lastname@example.org.