Naomi Moore's story is the latest in our exclusive Changemakeher Career Stories, where we interview incredible women creating powerful change in their respective fields about their stories and share their advice on how YOU can do the same. After doing some research, one of the biggest factors we’ve discovered as to why exactly girls tend to shy away from fields such as STEM, entrepreneurship and leadership roles is quite simply that there is often not enough representation. After all, it’s a lot harder to become something you can’t see. So, here at Changemakeher, one of the ways we’re working to change that by interviewing amazing women out there, and showing that you’re just as capable of doing things like them!
So, without further ado, let us introduce to you: Naomi Moore!
Tell us about your story and what you do day-to-day!
Since my schooldays I have adored certain types of stories. 1984, Anthem, Logan’s Run etc are stories that force the reader to re-evaluate the choices and priorities they have along a bigger scale, a global or even universal one, hoping to force us to avoid the kinds of uncomfortable futures pictured within. While dystopian fiction has made a comeback in a big way in the past few years, those heavy, speculative shorter stories that were so popular in the 1940s and onwards had no real space to be shared. I know, and so should every girl reading this, that if you want something that doesn’t exist, it’s your responsibility to make it. And so I did! Creating a medium for writers of all walks of life, regardless of gender, religion, cultural background, age, sexuality or anything else means that there are no concerns about our future that get overlooked, and the value of a beautiful story with an important message will not be lost on an audience too limited to make changes around it. There is now a space for myself and other aspiring world-changers to share their stories and their message the world over.
How did you get to where you are today?
I finished my uni degree (English/Philosophy double major) not knowing exactly what I wanted to do with it. Going into the workplace, I found that I had little passion for the work I was able to do being employed under somebody else – it was uncreative, inflexible, and I only ever seemed to be running in place. However, I had a passion, and an idea. My passion was for speculative fiction, and the good it could do in a world on the brink of political, environmental and social dystopia. My idea? Help the world by making those stories known in a medium that anyone would want to read and be a part of. In only a few months, my magazine has gone from a pipe dream to a publication backed by multiple world class authors and with a release date. All you need is an idea, a motivation, and all the hard work you can muster, and you can make something amazing.
What advice would you give to young girls looking to get into your field of work?
I started New Orbit Magazine because I loved to write, and there was nowhere specific for the kinds of stories I loved to be published. Now that it exists, all you need to do is utilise the space! If your passion is writing, you need to write every day until you are happy with what you can do, and then send your baby out into the world to fly. Short stories, like the ones in New Orbit, are the perfect way to get your name in the world and your words into print. If your passion is publishing or editing, there is no better time or place than here and now to start your dream. Even if you just start with a blog or a review column, your talent and hard work can make it into something big and your own in no time at all.
Why do you think women are under-represented in your field and the broader workplace?
Some of the greatest speculative fiction stories have been written by women, not just now, but throughout history. Mary Shelley, author of Frankenstein, may have been the mother of science fiction nearly 100 years before H.G. Wells came by to snap up the paternal title. Ayn Rand changed the world with her stories Atlas Shrugged and Anthem in the earliest 20th century, selling millions of copies, and Suzanne Collins, author of The Hunger Games, reinvigorated the genre of dystopia only a few years ago, inspiring a slew of new books, films and ideas. If women are underrepresented in writing and publishing stories designed to change the world, they have no right to be. Our way to combat underrepresentation? Represent yourself! If writing is something you love, write. There’s no better way to prove women can do a job than by being a woman doing that job. Fight all the fights you can, and win.
Have you experienced any push-back for being a woman in your field? If so, how do you deal with that?
Being a 22-year-old female editor doesn’t have many drawbacks until your meetings start taking place in person. My age, gender and appearance, considering the publication I’m putting into place, tends to come as a surprise to potential contributors, clients, and partners that I meet for the first time. However, it is hard to be underestimated when you’ve got an impressive showcase of work and professionalism behind your appearance, no matter what that appearance is. As long as you take yourself seriously, everyone else will have no choice but to do the same.
Who are your biggest inspirational GirlBosses?
I’ve mentioned a few above; incredible writers like Ayn Rand and Suzanne Collins easily top my list. As well as these, Jenny Argante, who runs the Tauranga Writers Association in New Zealand, and Lee Murray, a global bestselling author, came together at the very inception of this idea to help me get it off the ground.
How can girls get involved with New Orbit Magazine?
If you write, have a message to share, or want to change the world, we want to hear from you. New Orbit Magazine intends to work very closely with youth writers (will be reaching out through high schools very soon), and I personally would love to help as many talented young women get their names in print as I can. Stories, comments, reviews, and anything else you’d like to share can be submitted at www.neworbitmagazine.org/contributions