What It's About
Long-distance romance leads a Texas transplant to the pun-damentals of side hustling.
Words of Wisdom
Editors are almost always on the hunt for new content, and you can use that to your advantage. By pitching your story to different publications, “you can receive free press!” This technique has lead Angelica to be published in BRIDES and Business Insider!
Puns, which are also called “paranomasias”, have been traced as far back as Ancient Egypt. They were often used in myths and the interpretation of dreams. Who said Side Hustle School wasn't educational?!
Notes from Chris
Angelica and Nick Hanley met, like many millennials do, on a dating app. As a lover of puns, Angelica likes to say that her husband swiped her off her feet. The two instantly hit it off, and they started texting and FaceTiming on the daily. But there was only one problem: although their connection to each other was powerful, their WiFi connection needed to be even stronger. You see, Angelica lived in Maryland, and Nick was stationed in Japan as a Navy pilot. As the months went by, the couple was still going strong. Angelica even flew out to Japan to have their first official date. But though they were head over heels for one another, the distance was, understandably, still very hard. That’s when Angelica started sending Nick puns in their texts back and forth to each other. It made the distance seem shorter and kept them happy and laughing, rather than focusing on how far apart they were. They kept up their “punning around” for two years. Whenever they got to spend time together in person, Angelica continued the punny antics by taking pictures of Nick and adding pun-derful captions to them. She posted them online, and her family and friends soon began to encourage the double entendres. A few years after they met, Nick moved back to the United States to continue his service in Corpus Christi, Texas. Finally in the same country, Angelica decided to move down south and away from her bustling, East Coast life. Although she was happy to be with Nick, life wasn’t suddenly perfect. For the first time, Angelica had to get used to being away from her family and her big-city life. Without the abundance of hobbies and social circles that she was used to, she began to feel isolated and alone. And the need to dig herself out of this hole is where our story picks up. Angelica was searching for a way to bring joy into her life—and because of Nick’s job, she wanted to make sure that whatever it was, she could take with her regardless of distance. Then she thought back to the way that she created joy the last time distance was weighing her down: with puns, of course! She remembered how much her friends and family enjoyed her wordplay. Suddenly, Angelica realized that she may actually be able to sell her ideas in the form of punny greeting cards. In the summer of 2017, she got to work on her first few designs and decided to post them on an Etsy shop called ACouplePuns. The cards featured sketches of Lady Gaga saying, “Baby you were born this day,” and two dinosaurs kissing decked out in wedding garb above “You make a dino-mite couple.” Between buying inventory and the Etsy membership, her startup costs were only about $50. But what she was saving in money, Angelica invested in time. She committed to working on her new project consistently. It was a great source of creativity and joy in her life, and she wanted to make sure that she did things right. Since then, Angelica has scored a few wholesale deals and is on the hunt for more. The key to her success is to keep updating listings and to consistently refresh the shop. Not only that, but she now releases her cards in batches of twenty, rather than one at a time. She makes the color schemes consistent so they look more appealing on the shelves and on her website. Some of her most popular cards to date are “I’m so excited I almost wet my plants” with a photo of plants, a “pumped for you” breast pump card for new moms, and a “Thanks a watt” card with a lightbulb on the front. Two years later, this self-proclaimed entrePUN-neur is making anywhere from $300-$500 a week from her hustle. To this day, she is still based on Etsy and uses their Pattern platform. Although her original goal was to sell 50 cards, Angelica has now sold over 2,500 punderful cards and counting.
MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
- A Couple Puns: Pun around with Angelica's full lineup over on her website!
- Savvy Stationery Site Offers Cards for Divorce & Diwali: A director at a non-profit college of music creates an e-commerce site selling greeting cards with a twist
- Scientist Challenges Perceptions with Simple Conversation Starters: After an unsettling conversation, a junior scientist creates an entire product line to shift the stereotypes for “what a scientist should look like”
- South Carolina Transplant Creates Watercolor Stationery Brand: A new resident of Charleston, South Carolina pursues a passion for watercolor print design. She ends up creating a stationery brand of prints, cards, mugs, and notebooks inspired by the coastal lifestyle
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