Week One of Startup Garage
The past few weeks have been a bit crazy. I’m currently doing a full course load, working part-time in marketing and communications, and working on Art & Science Journal with Startup Garage. A few weeks ago, Art & Science Journal exploded and surpassed 100,000 followers and is currently at 120,000. Then this week Victoria and I started the Startup Garage program, which is a business accelerator for students. We get office space, access to Invest Ottawa’s boardrooms and resources, and mentoring from people who have already gone through the startup process.
On Monday, Victoria and I went for our orientation and then started the A&SJ revamp. I’m currently finishing up the last minute touches on Issue 2 and working on the Art & Science Journal website redesign. One of the current issues with the website is that the front page only includes the blog with links to our publications. The new website coming next week will introduce Art & Science Journal and what we do right away before it leads into the blog. We’re also working on our first book this summer, which will be spearheaded by Victoria.
On Tuesday our first mentor came in. Luc Levesque came in to discuss TravelPod, a blogging platform he developed for travelers, which was then bought by Expedia. He talked about search engine optimization, which was really helpful because most of A&SJ’s traffic comes through tumblr rather than through searches—something to work on.
On Thursday, Stephen Daze came in and taught us how to make pitches. He first told us the basic layout and all the questions VCs may have, and then we had to write one and present it on the spot. Art & Science Journal isn’t looking for venture capitalist funding, but it was really good practice for explaining our business plan. I felt a bit Mad Men too ;)
In the afternoon our two groups of interns came in. The book interns—Adam, Andrew and Leona—came in to discuss the chapters they’ll be working on and potential artists for each section. Then the editorial and web interns—Lea, Janine, and Connie—came in to discuss topics for the website. Our fourth editorial intern Meriza will be in next week. Overall, it was a pretty busy week! June will be relatively easy with website redesign and working on the print issues, but July will be intense as that’s when I’ll start working on all the business stuff (advertising, accounting, etc). There’s so much to set up!