This month’s Success Sessions interview, for the start of our new year, is with Amy Scott of Nomad Editorial and Nomadtopia.
Hi Amy! Tell us about you and your business(es).
I have two businesses: Nomad Editorial and Nomadtopia. Nomad Editorial provides writing coaching and editing services for nonfiction writers. Nomadtopia is a hub of information, inspiration, community, and support to help you create your ideal life, anywhere in the world.
What inspired you to start your business?
In 2005, I had just returned to the States after having quit my job to travel around the world for nine months. I was desperate to continue the adventure and knew I wanted to be able to live and work anywhere. I didn’t want to go back to an office, so I decided to take advantage of my background (and contacts) in book publishing by working as a freelance editor. I founded Nomad Editorial to make it official.
Six years later, I wanted to start another business that would be more scalable and also in line with some of my other interests. I couldn’t get enough of the freedom that being location independent allowed me, and I wanted to help others who were interested in the same thing but thought it was impossible or just never took action. The result: Nomadtopia.
How would you describe your journey and how has having your own business changed things for you?
Having my own business has changed my life. It was all part of my master plan to create a life of freedom anywhere in the world, and it worked! Being able to work for myself, from anywhere, has allowed me to spend the greater part of the last seven years living and traveling abroad. It’s been a huge catalyst for so many good things in my life (for example, I spent several years living in Argentina, where I met my husband!).
What has been your biggest success so far?
Rather than any particular financial goal or program launch, I’d say my biggest success is making it this far! I’ve been working for myself (and supporting myself) for more than eight years, while creating and living my ideal life, and I’m thrilled to be able to do what I do in life and in business.
Would you share with us the biggest lesson you learned?
This is a tough one—there are so many! Learning not to go it alone is a big one. I felt very isolated the first few years, and the little communication/networking I did do was with other people in my industry, so I was pretty much doing things by the book and not growing very much. As the years went by, I got involved with more general online business communities and branched out in a big way. Connecting with people in other lines of work has allowed me to see a vision for Nomad Editorial outside the limited scope of the publishing industry and find new ways to work with people and make money. And, getting involved in these networks has led to lots of new clients, too!
What keeps you motivated and engaged with your business?
My clients, customers, and community. I love seeing people take action to reach their dreams, and I’m so proud of everyone I’ve worked with who has finished their book, made big changes in their life, or made another dream come true.
What one piece of advice would you give other small business owners and start-ups?
It’s not very glamorous, but my key advice is to keep expenses low. For me, keeping both my living expenses and business expenses low allowed me to support myself pretty much from day one. Even now, although I spend more than I did at the beginning, I have a lot of flexibility about how I spend my time because I focus my spending on what really matters to me and is in alignment with my values.
What’s next for you and your business?
I’m still working out my plans for 2014, but for Nomadtopia, the new year will definitely see continued focus on community, as well as a few new offerings. Nomad Editorial will continue to focus on providing top-quality editing and coaching services for writers who are ready to finally see their ideas in print (or digital!) form.
Amy Scott quit her office job to travel the world in 2004 and never looked back. She now keeps a home base in Buenos Aires while she travels the world with her Argentine husband. She’s the founder of Nomadtopia, an online community and source of inspiration and information for anyone who wants to live their ideal life, anywhere in the world. Through her other business, Nomad Editorial, she helps nonfiction writers finish their books. You can connect with her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nomadamyscott.