Hi, my name is Cara Szellemes and I am the founder of Your Story Bank. I am an award-winning, seasoned marketer and copywriter with almost 30 years of experience and I’m the Amazon No. 1 bestselling author of Your Brilliant Un-Career: Women, Entrepreneurship and Making the Leap.
I’m obsessed with empowering subject-matter experts like you on how to translate your brilliance into powerful thought leadership content that inspires trust, loyalty and action. I love teaching and mentoring in this space and using my knowledge and experience for good and I’m delighted to bring this platform to life as a tool you can use in conjunction with other amazing writing tools.
Over the past 10 years, I’ve focused on working with businesses and organisations on strategic content marketing projects across tourism, finance, tech, engineering, academia, non-profits and government. I am currently working with clients in the blockchain technology space, finance and non-profit space.
I’ve worked with Queensland Science, Workup Queensland, The Woodford Folk Festival, Food Connect Foundation, Content Snare, MissingSchool, Synergy8, the National Archives of Australia (with a content agency), and GHD (the engineering company not the appliance).
Background to Your Story Bank
Several years ago, I came up with the idea to support people with their thought leadership writing using customised templates. It was a novel idea because instead of me handing people set templates, they could effectively create their own. The idea became a tech startup (Writally) with the backing of the Bluechilli Accelerator and while it worked to a point, it didn’t really solve the problem for people at scale because what users valued the most was coaching and accountability. Plus, I was the elf in the backroom creating each template by hand, and that just wasn’t sustainable. The software needed ai to power it but the money ran out before I found a co-founder to take on that challenge.
So, I cut my losses and closed the software company after 4 years of trying to make it work and went on to pursue other business ideas. What drew me back to creating in the content space again was seeing just how much people struggle with telling their stories and how much the world needs to hear them. We are facing a massive shortfall in skilled knowledge workers in the future and one of the ways we can inspire the next generation to take up STEM careers is through powerfully telling our stories, sharing our knowledge and big ideas. I had to look from a different angle and give it another shot, just not as software. It had to include the human element.
I went back to the drawing board and completely recreated the way I structured thought leadership templates. The result is Your Story Bank: Mix and match writing prompts and templates with the added support of expert coaching.
This is low tech but high value. Each template gives you thoughtful questions to ask yourself throughout the writing process and you can use each writing prompt to create content snippets that you can reuse in other content. And soon, pro members can access monthly group coaching on Zoom to get further guidance on their storytelling and content creation.
The platform is currently in beta, so please share your feedback. You can sign up for free and upgrade to Pro if you want ongoing access to new writing prompts and templates and coaching from me. You can also request one-to-one coaching for an additional fee. Just hit me up on LinkedIn, Instagram or here via the contact form.
ps: You may see me online as Cas McCullough as well. I have recently changed my name.