Thompson Rivers University
Thompson Rivers University

Making #vanlife work

  Posted on: June 13, 2016

Lisa and Coleman with the LietCo van—their home and office.

From interviewing A-list celebs like Christian SlaterGigi Hadid and Brian Cranston, to TV appearances on The Social— journalism alumnus Coleman Molnar (’10) and girlfriend Lisa Felepchuk are taking a risk that many would only dream of.

For the past five years, Molnar and Felepchuk worked tirelessly to create what most millennials would consider to be the dream life together. Successful writing careers in Toronto, a downtown apartment, 100 pairs of shoes and a beloved cat named Mewan McGregor.

But something was missing.

A decision to hit the open road in a 1983 Volkswagon Westfalia and travel North America in pursuit of their dreams has them down two corporate gigs, 90 pairs of shoes and one pet cat that will be dearly missed. (Don’t worry, it went to a good home).

“We started chatting about how we could escape the nasty Toronto winters and write from a beach somewhere hot,” said Molnar. “It kind of morphed into this crazy van thing naturally—we both wanted to travel Canada and the rest of North America and after doing some research, decided we could do it. It feels right.”

After a year and a half of long chats and hours spent planning and strategizing, Li et Co (Lisa and Coleman) was born.

Li et Co is a lifestyle publication produced out of their van as they travel North America in search of great stories, people and places that inspire them to live better.

“We’re not just two hippies doing yoga from our van—though we’re totally cool with that—this is a calculated career move and one that even five years ago would have been tough to make work,” said Molnar.

The couple has 18-years of combined print and digitial media experience. Molnar works as the managing editor at Digital Viking and Felepchuk, most recently, as editor-in-chief at S/ magazine, as well as the style editor at The Loop. This well-rounded portfolio of experience and strong network is somethig that the couple hopes will enable them to build and grow a succesful mobile business.

LietCo3

Lisa and the LietCo van at one of their first stops.

“The market for writers hasn’t been better in probably 40 years,” said Molnar. “The digital bloom, including all the different ways brands are telling stories, has opened up a whole new world of possibilities.”

“It’s also, of course, about networking and working hard, as it’s always been. Get a job. Do it well. Be kind to everybody you work with and file your work on time. But it’s a marathon, not a sprint, and you have to start somewhere.”

Their ultimate goal is to have an audience and staff of likeminded people. They may be building this vision off passion but they have every intention of making money off of it too.

Follow their journey at lietco.comInstagram, Facebook, Twitter and Youtube.

     

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