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  • Writer's pictureHannah Duncan

What was it like writing BUCKAROOS? 🤠

Updated: Feb 23, 2022

On Friday something dropped. Like a smoking hot potato. 🔥 The magazine supplement I'd been working on for twelve long months finally hit the world. At first I didn't believe it was real. Then it felt too real, and I started panic-reading for typos. Now I still feel dazed and confused that this beautiful glossy mag has finally hit the deck, and will soon be in the hands of fintech lovers all over the world.

BUCKAROOS has landed.

The search for legends begins... 🤠

BUCKAROOS is a magazine like no other (Well... except for SWASHBUCKLERS!). It's a curated collection of the very best people in fintech. Not just the ones on other lists. I don't do that. That's super lazy. Nobody likes a copycat.

This was hours and houuuuurs of dedicated research, seeking founders and frontrunners who make the world a better place. People with a vision so unbreakable, they deserve their own 24/7 superhero theme song. 🚀

Narrowing down the best of the best was hard going. It took days.

I moved from decaff, to coffee, to two scoops of coffee, to wine and then ... well no need to keep going! I'm lucky enough to have a bond with some of the people in the shortlist already. For others, I had to explore entirely new sub-sectors and continents. It was a big ol' thing. And you need a lot of focus and long-term thinking to get through it (neither of which I am great at!).

March 2021 : The search begins!

Getting interviews

Here's an interesting thing I've discovered. In general, men are more than happy to talk about themselves. If I want an interview with someone because they've won something or other, I often don't even have time to check my other emails after pressing "send". It's like BAM! SURE I'LL DO AN INTERVIEW WITH YOU. THAT'S GREAT THAT I WON! THRILLED. WHAT TIME? RIGHT NOW? 10 MINS? YESTERDAY? HOW ABOUT LAST WEEK ON WEDNESDAY?

For the most part, it is SO EASY to interview fintech men. And I love you guys for that. Thank you. Please continue.

But for senior women in finance? Not the same thing. Firstly, I have to get over the "this is not a scam" hurdle. Tough when you're cold-calling someone! Secondly comes the mistrust. And I totally get it. I've also received those "You're in the top women list, if you pay us $3000" emails. It lingers. I have to fight tooth and nail to show that I'm legit and not asking for money... And then finally comes the superhuman, back-to-back, fully-booked work calendar of madness. Senior women are SO BUSY! It is actually insane. No word of a lie, getting an interview takes MONTHS. And sometimes, it's super tempting to just give up. Pack it all in and go with someone who'd be easier to access. BUT THAT'S NOT THE SPIRIT OF BUCKAROOS.

I have to be like a Buckaroo myself, scouting and lassoing those interviews like the good townspeople of fintech depend on it!

Me as a Buckaroo! Image by Chris Swales

Writing them up ... the titles!!

POWER OF THE BLOG. GO AHEAD MAKE MY PAYTECH. THIS TECH AIN'T BIG ENOUGH FOR THE BOTH OF US... See what's happening? My brain went into overdrive and now I can't turn it off.

Finding 26 titles for each of the bombastic buckaroos was a REAL challenge. Imagine this... You have to write an article about financial technology and it must have a Western-themed heading.

Try and do one.

Go on.

Try and do it.... Got one?

Now do 25 MORE!!! GAAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!!

Ahh you guys, my brain felt like it was eating itself. I watched nothing but cowboy films. I played nothing but Spaghetti Western backing tracks. I listened to Rawhide CONSTANTLY - which was the inspiration for Ghela B's article. And also proved to be quite effective for uphill runs.

The titles nearly killed me. I didn't even work that hard on my dissertation.

26 Western-themed fintech titles!!!!!! 🥵

Writing them up ... the articles!

Ahhh now we're talking! It is SUCH a pleasure to write these articles up. To be the one to tell the story. I gave myself a maximum of 450 words - so that the graphics (shout out to Chris Swales) could be bold - and wrote myself into a labyrinth of happiness.

It's such a privilege.

I'm also super fortunate that Ali and the team at Fintech Finance trust me to write in my own voice. It's nice to crack a few jokes here and there. Write about kicking something in the balls. Why not, you know?


Chris Swales is an absolute saint. He did every little copy tweak and amendment with hardly any moaning at all, and made the magazine EPIC with his graphics. Some of the pages honestly just blew me away.

Seeing the final thing was just the loveliest. A lot of hard work went into that!!


Well... it's not really for me to say, but since it's my blog, I might as well! 😅

I absolutely loved bringing together this eclectic and amazing group of people. A lot of the standard "TOP FINTECH PEOPLE" stuff you see knocking around tends to focus on the tech. Or the turnover. Or funding rounds. Or whatever.

But BUCKAROOS and SWASHBUCKLERS go beyond that. Not just in their design. Or character. (Or time spent and brains fried!!) But in the way that people are selected.

These magazines look at the motivations of people.

Their ethics and morals.

If you take a moment to scroll through the magazines, you'll see that almost every BUCKAROO and SWASHBUCKLER is trying to create financial inclusion in their own way. They've built a product to help people. People who need support. People who don't have a hero.

THAT'S the kind of sh** I want to write about.

That's the stuff that matters.

I couldn't care less about funding for the sake of funding. Or founders for the sake of founders. I want to showcase the heroes who fight an uphill battle everyday to make the world a better place for everyone. The real-life SWASHBUCKLERS and BUCKAROOS who walk among us.

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