Aysha Bowens for 843? – zine – A Heartful History

Aug 26, 2021

“A Heartful History”

By: Aysha Bowens


It was acknowledged that I was creative, but instilled in me that I must take the more stable and safer route. That it was great that I could put things together on a computer screen to make them look good, but how would I make it in the real world? That the time I may spend pursuing a creative degree, I could’ve gotten one that would guarantee me money. (At that time I could’ve easily recited the salaries of an engineer, lawyer, and eye doctor. Thanks to those speeches)

I wanted to ask why not? Why couldn’t I be creative and successful? Why do I have to follow the exact footsteps that no one else in my family did? Then I looked into my history, into my family and no one was a successful creative. Yes, my family has great gifts but those gifts weren’t what kept a roof over their heads. With that reasoning, I decided I wanted to be the last one who had to take the safer route as there was no other option. The plan was to either be an industrial engineer or an instructional designer. 

But that plan took a turn when I needed to take a design class to complete my cord. I saw it as my chance to finesse my time to chase my creative dreams. That was when A Better Business x ABB was created, because of assignments I probably would never get assigned again. It was created for those who heard the same speech as me, yet decided to be creative. As they brought their gifts, and ideas to the world they missed the sauce. The sauce that could be achieved by adjusting a few words, having consistency, and targeting the right audience. Well I thought, I had just enough sauce to use my time in class to create a business. 

Well, I was right. I did have enough sauce. When I decided to share my business, I got the attention of a few friends and family who knew I was creative and business savvy. They trusted me with their business, to bring their visions to reality. From seeing their reactions to my work, to actually enjoying the process of creating logos and websites to bringing creative concepts to the table. It was then that I saw how I could make it in the real world. 

But life happened, and A Better Business x ABB came to a halt. It felt like dominos in the obstacles I was facing. 843With those dominos falling so fast, I asked myself why didn’t I follow the stable footsteps. Then, I had to remind myself that one day someone may be searching in their history for a precedent the same way I did. 

I may not be the one who completes the puzzle to success, but I will leave the pieces of my experiences, my knowledge, and my wealth so that it can be easier for the next to do so.


This essay is a creation of Aysha Bowens in collaboration with 843? (the question mark is silent) a Charleston based zine that aims to explore topics and issues that affect the Charleston area and beyond. Check out the zine this piece appears in here: