I always love meeting young people in our region doing awesome things. Today, that young person happened to be an ambitious writer named Lauren Sawyer who started a literary magazine a few months ago called Paradigm. When explaining her reasoning for starting the publication, she cited George Orwell’s essay “Why I Write” as an inspiration and states that she hopes Paradigm can accomplish what Orwell had hoped to: to make political writing (i.e. writing that motivates people to change their world) into an art form. After reading through the first edition, it’s obvious that she has a good grasp on how she hopes to achieve that.
Sawyer describes Paradigm as a break away from your everyday politically-infused journalism and strives to give her project purpose. In doing so, she’s committed to donating 100% of the proceeds to a charity with each sale. The first edition, printed in December, serves to support the Preemptive Love Coalition, an organization that assists Iraqi children in obtaining heart surgery. Sawyer realizes the desire millennials have to make a difference, and is a perfect example of using a social venture to educate people while allowing them the opportunity to have an impact on their world. Not only does the literature within the publication have an impact, its sales figures do as well. Additionally, she realizes the power of reader-created content, a trend that is growing among media outlets around the world. Media published in the publication is generated by authors who submit their writing and graphic design / photography.
This summer, Sawyer said she plans to release her second issue of the publication - this time focusing on urban development and design. In doing so, she’s committed to donating the proceeds to the Twelve Cities Project, an opportunity I’m excited to have! More exciting than that, however, is having the opportunity to watch this venture grow from its early stages. With a passionate millennial at its helm, the right ideas in place, and a beautiful product being created, I have no doubt that Sawyer and Paradigm are headed to great places in the future.
You can learn more about Paradigm and order a copy of the publication at www.paradigmlit.com.
Interested in supporting the Twelve Cities Project? You can donate online by clicking here.