Sarah Tarca is the editor of one of Australia’s number one teen magazine, Girlfriend. Which girl doesn’t get through her teenage years without the helpful hand of these lovely writers? I’m super excited about this one – I hope you are too.
Ellie: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Sarah: In year three I thought I’d be an artist. Turns out, I wasn’t very good at anything other than making crafted gumnut babies. So I switched to what I was good at: writing. And I’ve been doing it ever since. In my primary school yearbook I said I was going to be a journalist… and here I am.
ES: Who or what has inspired you to do what you do now?
ST: I really wanted to write fiction – which is a casualty of having an overactive imagination and being an avid reader. I knew I wasn’t cut out for hard news reporting – I could think of nothing worse than reporting on car crashes and politics! So I turned to my other great love – magazines. This allowed me to be creative, to have tone in my writing, and still write about the things that matter to me.
ES: Did you ever think you would work at a magazine as big as Girlfriend?
ST: Sure. The crazy thing about me as a teen – and even now is that it never occurred to me that I couldn’t achieve my wildest dreams. I left Adelaide when I was 20, part way through my degree to pursue a career in mags. Most people thought I was completely nuts – especially because I was moving for an unpaid internship. But I never thought of it as unachievable, and after four months of an internship, I got my first paid job as Editorial Coordinator at Cosmopolitan Magazine. Four years later, I moved to Girlfriend and have been here ever since.
ES: What do you love about your job?
ST: Absolutely everything! The incredibly talented team I work with, writing, choosing covers, discovering new talent, seeing the pages come to life! But the best thing is being about to chat with my readers on a daily basis. Not only are they my inspiration, they’re the reason I do what I do. I love nothing more than delivering them what they want each month.
ES: Do you have any advice for aspiring journalists or writers?
ST: Be passionate, be excited, love what you do. Don’t let anyone tell you what you can’t achieve – and be patient! Mags are very much about working your way up, so enjoy the journey and everything you learn along the way.