Mag marks a new era

ERA Magazine co-founders Sonya Murphy and Sue Williams.

By Taylah Eastwell

When Era Magazine rolled off the press in January this year, the tears rolled too.

Happy tears, tears of joy, achievement and relief, rolled down the cheeks of co-founders Sonya Murphy and Sue Williams, who finally got to flick through the pages on the magazine they had spent the last 12 months creating.

Sonya Murphy, a designer from Olinda, approached Sue Williams, a business mentor from Boronia, at one of her business mentor meetings and raised the idea of starting a magazine for women.

“One day I just posed the question and she said yes,” Ms Murphy said.

“We very quicky came up with the idea of a magazine for women in small business because there is nothing in the marketplace for women who operate small businesses. The women working from home, women doing it on their own,” she said.

The magazine is designed to be kept on a bookshelf and referred back to time and time again, with informational and inspirational articles contributed by women in the Hills and far beyond.

“We just put it out to our networks, we have strong, inspiring networks in the Hills and further afield and have been really lucky that people have been open to contributing. The articles are very much about women inspiring others, with a nice blend of mindset and looking after yourself and professional business advice,” Ms Williams said.

A financial advisor and an empowerment coach also contribute to each issue, with readers encouraged to send in questions to receive answers in print.

While no two pages are the same, each story is focused on informing and empowering women – which reflects the meaning behind the magazine name.

Ms Williams explained Era was chosen as the name given the mag is “all about women stepping into a new era of business”.

“We are becoming much more feminine in the way we do business and it is necessary that we step into that, our politics are changing, everything is changing in this world and becoming a little bit more feminine and we are targeting that step into that new era for women in business,” she said.

The women celebrated an official launch with advertisers, contributors and their families on March 20 and have loved watching people’s faces as they open Era Magazine ever since.

“The most exciting part is when people see it and they go, ‘oh wow’,” Ms Williams said.

“Our business relationship has been really important. Our connection and communication and ability to talk through things if something is not right has been a beautiful thing. We have celebrated together, laughed and cried together, some days we’ve laughed so much that we’ve cried, but for me it has been all about the journey to get to this and to see the incredible people we know put words on paper,” she said.

The magazine, published quarterly, is compiled in Olinda and printed in Mulgrave onto 100% Australian-made recycled paper and using organic inks before being distributed to over 1100 newsagents across Queensland, New South Wales, the ACT and Victoria.

Locals can pick up a copy at Shop 5, 1526-1528 Mount Dandenong Tourist Rd, Olinda, or in local newsagencies.

Digital copies are also available, see for more information.