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  • Wonderful Women: Annie Fox

    Let me introduce to you the wonderful Annie Fox, a digital guru, writer, fantasy enthusiast, intellect, babe, motivator, friend, hard-worker, inspiration and gazelle on the basketball court - the list could go on.

    Annie Fox is one of those amazingly clever people that exude mystery, so I was honoured when she said yes to being part of our Wonderful Women series - and after five or so years of friendship it was a good excuse to ask her some really interesting questions, about work, superheroes and of course sexuality.

    Before leaving Australia for LA (where she currently lives), Annie was the first Editor in Chief and later Product Manager for Fairfax's TheVine. Annie arrived in LA to a job as the General Manager of SpinMedia (formerly BUZZMEDIA), tackled the same role at Hello Giggles and now is on her way to... hmm, I'm not so sure (yet) - but I'll guarantee it's somewhere bigger and better than where she has been - as that's just how she rolls.

    So have a read and get to know what keeps Annie's heart ticking and keep your eye on her. She is Wonderful.

    Interview by Vanessa Muradian

    Annie Fox when did you decide that you wanted to rule the world?

    Ruling the WHOLE world was never my calling – I just want to feel like I rule MY world. I never wanted to be a product of someone else’s destiny.

    So I know your job at CLEO as the beauty editor was over ten years ago and you’ve just been achieving ever since. For old times sake, if you were doing a beauty page spread now-a-days, what products or secrets would you endorse?

    I very rarely endorsed big ticket items (because I was broke myself!), and even now I stand by those bargain buys I used to love. Cetaphil, Lucas Paw Paw, Maybelline Great Lash and Revlon nail colour are still some of my favourite things. The only stuff I really spend money on is good vitamins (I take Vitamin C and probiotics), a good exfoliator (Peter Thomas Roth Blemish Buffing Beads) and moisturiser (Philosophy Hope In A Jar). I wear sunscreen everyday (just a cheapy), exercise regularly and drink a shitload of water.

    Further, what do you think beauty means now in your 30s as opposed to your early 20s?

    I found an interview I did when I was only 24 – so almost ten years ago now – and in it I spoke about my beauty philosophy. I have to admit that my values are unchanged: don’t try and disguise everything on your face and body that makes you feel insecure. I have never let myself buy into the notion that I am obliged to be my most attractive self every waking second of my life. I have bigger fish to fry.

    What is the most important piece of advice you have received?

    You eat a whale one bite at a time.

    If you could give one piece of advice to your 20-year-old self, what would it be?

    Don’t rush.

    I know you might actually like the idea of time and space travel, so IMAGINE you are 44 and you could tell the 33 year old you one thing, what would it be?

    I LOVE the idea of time travel! Great question! I think my struggle with patience will be a lifelong battle, so my advice will be the same in my 20s, 30s, 40s til I drop dead. “Don’t rush Annie Fox!”

    Now that you’ve written it down for us, will you listen to it?

    I do try to be patient, but it doesn’t always work.

    I’ve seen you in the office doing your thing, you often look bangin’ – do you have any advice to women, who are working their way up the creative corporate ladder and still want to be true to their style yet can be worried about what others think?

    I think it’s important to be true to your style, it sets you apart and shows that you have a sense of yourself. That said, I never want my clothes to be the only thing I am remembered for when I leave a room, and I certainly don’t want my tits to be more inviting than my eyes.

    Do you see any differences in working in Australia versus working in the United States?

    The biggest difference is probably the demarcation of roles and responsibilities. In the States there are more specialists so your role is very siloed, here you have to be a jack of all trades and be willing to do a bit of everything to get the job done.

    What’s the worst job you’ve ever had? Did it serve a purpose?

    I wouldn’t take back a single terrible job I’ve had, and I’ve had a few. The worst by far was working in an abattoirs. I’ve always tried to make the best of what I had in front of me – and even elbow deep in meat I tried to be present and learn what I could.

    If you could change one thing about the world today what would it be?

    I’d instil a much greater sense of empathy into every single person on the planet – myself included.

    Do you feel accomplished?

    I feel I have accomplished some of the things on my to-do list, but I’m a long way from finished!

    Describe your ideal superhero?

    My favourite has always been Jean Grey from X-Men. I like the Phoenix narrative – the idea that there is a powerful force inside her that she constantly battles with. I think of it as a metaphor for the ego and our struggle between self-service and selflessness. Honouring both is important – it’s knowing which and when that’s the trick.

    If you could be someone else for a day, who would it be?

    I’d be Commander Chris Hadfield – he’s an astronaut on the International Space Station.

    Who do you look up to?

    My mother, without question.

    Can you recommend one book or blog I should read or follow right now? Why?

    This is so hard! There are a ton I love. I’m about to move into a new apartment so I’m currently obsessed with interiors and DesignSponge.com is one of my favourite blogs.

    My favourite book of all time is The Orchid Theif, by Susan Orlean. Right now I’m reading Good To Great by Jim Collins – it’s a book about the qualities shared by some of the most successful companies of our time.

    One thing we believe at Mia Muse is that women who ‘dominate their space’, should be commended for doing their thing and rockin’ it! We find confidence and passion very attractive, so one way of embracing sexuality, is to embrace what we do outside of the bedroom.  This is why we’re asking you these questions.

    Was there any point in your life, or in your career, that made you go, “damn girl, you’re okay (about yourself)” and this translated into your relationships?

    My first job, at CLEO. I realized that I could achieve the things I wanted to through perseverance. I didn’t have to be the smartest person in the room, I just had to be the most focused and applied. I also learnt to be humble and find great leaders to learn from. The satisfaction I got from my professional achievements touched every other part of my life, including relationships. I embrace the work of partnerships – all kinds, professional and personal. But I also work very hard to stay true to the fundamentals of who I am and I have left jobs and relationships to honour these values. And would again.

    Your relationship with yourself?

    I invest in my relationship with myself the same way I do the relationships with my friends. I’m kind to myself – in particular my body. I spend time on my own. I let myself fail at things. I don’t judge myself for my desires. I take pride in my work.

    What do you think sexy means?

    To me, there is no seduction as sexy as an intellectual seduction. As much as I love beautiful things, it’s absolutely the unique parts of someone’s intellect and character that turns me on the most.

    When do you feel most sexy?

    I can never pick the moments I feel sexy – they catch me by surprise!

    Generally speaking (these questions we ask everyone)…

    What does sexuality mean to you?

    Understanding your desires and the desires of others.

    Have you had any breakthrough moments regarding your sexuality?

    So many! No matter how much time and energy I invest in understanding my sexual self, every few years I come to a crossroads where I find myself tested. The biggest lesson I have learnt is the most obvious: be honest about your sexual needs and extend the same to your partners.

    One thing about sex you wish they taught you in school?

    OMG! ANYTHING! I went to a catholic girls’ school and they taught us nothing about sex.  I wish someone told me about bisexuality sooner – I heard the phrase for the first time when I was sixteen.

    Describe sex in one word?

    Chess.

    If sex or sexuality was a song, what song would it be?

    Easy. Led Zeppelin’s ‘No Quarter’.

    Any tips on harnessing your sexuality?

    Don’t limit yourself to believing sex only evolves in relationships. The sex you have with yourself is as much a journey as the sex you have with other people. Be introspective and reflective – contemplate your desires, experiment with new ones.

    Thank you Annie Fox x.

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