This week’s newsletter is a little different. No podcast reviews, just an update for everyone who is following the Storitopia journey.
This tiny little seed started several years ago, around the time my daughter, Anna, was four or five. I imaged a space where she could discover and learn about people, cultures, science, history, and all things she was curious about, in an age-appropriate way. A place to feed her curiosities in a fun, safe, and educational way. I pictured an app that was a mashup of Storycorps (audio story preservation), Reels (social story sharing), and Youtube (online video sharing).
I spent some time before and during my college years in radio and audio production and ten years post-college in television and video production, so I felt like building something cool that allowed kids to discover and share stories was maybe something I could actually do. But even with all of that experience, I still felt apprehensive about putting myself out there and just going for it.
But here’s what you should know about apprehension and self-doubt. If you have an idea or a dream, and you share it and let it take shape, and then find yourself in a sea of cheerleaders and advocates, the roar of the crowd may be enough to push through the what-ifs. For some (myself included) that may not be enough. What you need is a nudge.
Just over a year ago I got that nudge. It was a trusted voice telling me that this idea could be something really great and now was the time to start. It was also a reminder that not everything needed to be done today. Little steps over time are how anything great gets done, right? (Side note: someday I’ll get to Giza).
So, as I got more comfortable with the idea that maybe I really could do this thing, it still felt crazy. Like, I’m-officially-middle-aged-and-maybe-completely-nuts-for-jumping-out-of-the-career-path-I’ve-spent-two-decades-building, kind of crazy. But then my good-old-fashioned FOMO hit me and the fear of missing out on building something amazing and cool that I (and maybe others) would be excited and proud to be a part of pushed me straight through all the other fears.
So here we are, a year later, with some really exciting milestones. I’m sharing them with you because I’m ridiculously thrilled (and a tiny bit awed) that we’ve managed to get this far and for that, I think we should all celebrate!
We’ve hit a mountain of milestones in a year. From naming the company, securing a domain, developing a website, and applying for a trademark, to working full-time on just Storitopia!
This week we wrapped up two months of dedicated development for the first version of the app. As of yesterday, we were officially approved by Apple to launch testing of the app. The prototype is called an MVP, which stands for a minimum viable product. It’s a funny name – but the goal is to get feedback from as many early adopters (and potential someday-customers) as possible. We will share the MVP with a few dozen users over the next few weeks and months, and record all of their feedback, all to determine if we’re on the right path and building something that kids and families will love.
There’s still so much work to do, but we hope you like what we’ve done so far. I can’t wait to start hearing your feedback!
For those of you who look forward to our weekly podcast reviews, I have some exciting news. We’ll be posting some great podcasts that we love on social all month long. If you’re not following already, check out Stortopia’s Instagram and Facebook pages and follow along.