Marisa describes herself as a bookworm. After earning her Bachelor of Arts with a double major in English and History, she established a career in the field of communications. However, her passion for literature prompted her to reorient herself professionally and obtain her MA in English Literature with the highest distinction. Equipped with her love for literary world and her entrepreneurial mindset, Marisa launched her very own company. Le Salon Literary Discussions offers virtual literary salons as well as a selection of at-home salon kits, each with the purpose of enriching the reading experience for literary enthusiasts.
As a female founder, what are you most proud of?
I am very proud that I found the courage to take my business from conception to reality. It can be very intimidating to follow a dream that is outside the social ‘expectation’ of a steady job and motherhood, but I remind myself that feminism is having the freedom to follow my own path. As a female entrepreneur I am proud to be part of a larger legacy of women carving out a role for themselves.
If you could give one piece of advice to a young woman aspiring to become an entrepreneur, what would you say?
Build your business in a way that feels good to you. It can be overwhelming (and uncomfortable) to try to follow the process of others as the ‘only’ recipe for success. You don’t have to run your business like the coach says in their e-book or like that business with thousands of followers. Knowing your values — and the value you add — will help attract the right customer.
Where do you see your business and / or entrepreneurial journey in 10 years?
While I have a number of goals, my first priority is to continue to navigate my business through its first few years. The backbone of my vision is to build my business in a way that is adaptable so I can continue to create and seize opportunities as they come.
That being said, by year 10 I would love to be partnering with big publishing houses, hosting in-person literary salons, and hiring graduates from English programs.
*This feature was published in honour of the Women’s Entrepeneurship Day, 2020.