A couple of months ago, a friend got in touch to let me know about her latest project. And my heart skipped a beat.
Nicky Shortridge and her childhood best friend Vivien Jones are busy creating Kookie – a fun, feminist print magazine designed for girls, that they are looking to fund through Kickstarter.
In their own words, Kookie is a magazine:
“where girls can find themselves reflected as strong, capable individuals. It’s a magazine with a mission: to celebrate all a girl can be – whether she’s passionate about science or sport, art or astronomy, history or hip hop, whether she likes digging in the dirt or building castles in the air. Featuring powerful stories of inspirational girls and women, KOOKIE gives its young readers a well-rounded and optimistic sense of their place in the world.’
Eep! How cool does that sound? As Nicky is based here in Australia and Vivien in the UK, there’ll be content from both hemispheres (hurrah!) and the mag will include interviews with inspiring women including sportspeople, scientists and artists, jammed between a collection of ace comics and stories, quizzes, how-to’s and a pull-out poster (because of course there’s a pull-out poster).
Honestly, I wish there’d been something like this around when I was a girl. I was a voracious reader and loved magazines as a kid, but between Dolly, Smash Hits and the various glossy gossip rags I found lying about the place, I fed my curiosity for top 40 hair bands, learnt how to apply lipstick and discovered the only thing girls and women needed to worry about was losing weight, attracting boys and staying ‘on trend’.
So as you can imagine, I’m thrilled that Nicky and Vivien are trying to put something so positive and empowering into the world for young people, something that doesn’t try and commodify, belittle or fence in girls who have their whole lives ahead of them.
I’ll be contributing to Kookie by lending my photography skills to a couple of their stories, which is very exciting.
And if there’s a girl in your life, please consider giving them the gift of a Kookie subscription. The Kickstarter campaign closes in a couple of weeks, so get your skates on! Kookie’s Kickstarter can be found here.