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Meet Charlene Cornelia of Sparkly Scribes

Today we’d like to introduce you to Charlene Cornelia.

Charlene, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
At one point in a past job, I felt I needed to do more, but felt stuck. I thought hard about what I was putting a lot of my time and resources into when I wasn’t at work. I was purchasing a lot of (maybe too much) stationery and office supplies that helped make my list making, checklists, and long meetings a little more colorful.

Though I wanted to design my own stationery supplies, I knew trying to figure that out from the start would make me feel overwhelmed and not start anything at all. So I took a risk and started Sparkly Scribes as a source for stationery tools. I like to think of it as being my own shop curator of cute, fun, unique supplies for the office, back-to-school, or gifts.

I really wanted to turn feeling “stuck” into a positive, which is why I like to tell anyone willing to listen to be free to dream, hope, plan, take notes, and make lists. Sparkly Scribes has the goods to help write it all down. As a side note, I’ve learned that more often than not, writing things down has helped me comprehend and retain information better than putting something in my phone. Would someone please tell me I’m not alone in this?!

While I’m slowly adding items to the shop, I’m embracing the fact that I’m a product of a time when handwriting ruled + Internet connection meant I couldn’t use the landline at the same time! I’m also fueled by the smiles I see at local pop-ups when people of all ages test out Sparkly Scribes goods, leave notes and doodles, and go home happy.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I’d have to say no. However, the funny thing is because I’m making it a point to enjoy this process, especially so early into everything, the struggles have only inspired me to keep going and learning.

The biggest struggle I’ve had so far is balancing time amongst Sparkly Scribes, day job, family life, sleeping, and then upping my social media savviness! This is partly why I devoted time to the Totally/Hella Organized items I developed for the shop: partly reminiscent of how organized I once was and partly a visual reminder of how I just need to take a deep breath, have faith, and laugh. Hopefully one day, I’ll become what I think I am.

There’s so much to learn about running a small business and foreseeing mistakes are so intimidating. When I struggle with the uncertainty of how to do something, San Diego’s community of local creatives and entrepreneurs has been awe-inspiring and motivating. It helps to know that others also had to start somewhere and that for every person who might not get the struggle, there are two or three who do and believe in you, too.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Sparkly Scribes – what should we know?
I’ve been called the pen lady. I’ve been asked if the pens sparkle. And I’ve been told, “Who would’ve thought you could make a business out of pens?”

Sparkly Scribes is more than pens; it’s also pencils, notepads, sticky notes, and push pins. Kidding aside, it’s a way to infuse something different into everyday items you use that you’d pick up in a stationery/school and office supply aisle. It’s a way to enjoy what you have to do or have to say- whether it be meeting notes, homework, or a letter.

Sparkly Scribes is a way to help you surround yourself with items that reflect style. And when you show up with style (and confidence), you naturally sparkle. It’s also like flair for your desk space.

Sparkly Scribes preserves a little bit of the past in a new age and lets you support dreams. For instance, we’ve been able to give back to different educational communities, including supplies to the local SAY San Diego via San Diego Moms Blog Cares. A bright tomorrow starts now. And we hope people would join us in building that future.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Honesty, sometimes to a fault. But I won’t apologize for wanting to live truthfully. There are only so many hours in a day. If I had to use my time on keeping up with deceit just to make a buck, then I don’t personally feel I’d be living the life I’m given. There are enough ups and downs in the cycle of life. I really don’t want to use the little energy I have left on something that brings false hope.

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