There was something about the unlimited horizon words presented — it captured my imagination and opened up a new world to me. I gobbled vocabulary and spelling like a total language geek. I’ve never lost my fascination and love for language and all it can accomplish.
Some careers start before you even imagine them.
When I was 14, I started winning awards for my writing. I was a staff member of an innovative yearbook produced in quarterly issues like a magazine.
I know –you’re not looking for a high school kid! But stick with me on this…
I was the youngest literary editor of the yearbook ever, and then became the Editor-in-Chief. We submitted our yearbook and competed every year at the annual Press Day at St. Bonaventure University. The New York Times sponsored these awards.
When I was in charge, our yearbook won 1st Place, rated “Outstanding” in New York State.
- My career working on magazines in writing, editing and developing content actually started before I was 18.
I joined my college paper, wrote for a weekly during summer, and became the Editor-in-Chief of my college newspaper in record time.
I didn’t realize it then, but all that editor work was the breeding ground for working with teams of creative people, and developing projects for marketing.
And the story gets even better.
I married another young achiever while we were still in college, and devoted the next ten years to raising our four sons while my then-husband played the PGA Tour and became an on-course analyst for network and cable TV. I started a successful career as a freelance writer for local, regional, and national magazines at the same time.
- Because we lived in a world of media and the business that surrounds the Tour, I got an irreplaceable education in how the corporate world uses media, networking and marketing to make money.
I was fascinated by production – I got to work a giant TV camera on a tower in rehearsal, help time segments during a national broadcast in a trailer, watch directors work with “the talent” in the booth, hang with other writers.
I couldn’t let all that real-life education and exposure go to waste now, could I?
Eventually, the bottom fell out of my marriage. To survive, I worked short-term jobs for a staffing agency and then in retail.
Two semi-crappy jobs taught me a lot:
- Like how to solve problems for customers.
- How to follow up, follow through, and get the job done.
- That above all, people want to be heard.
- That listening and responding produce results — and can turn an unhappy, complaining customer into a satisfied and loyal one.
The staffing company hired me as a recruiter. During my interview, the manager said:
“You’re a writer… Could you take a look at our advertising? No one knows what they’re doing. Could you work with it? Just play with it.”
Look at it, I did. Work with it, I did. Play with it – yes, I did!
I developed a whole advertising and marketing strategy, developed creative concepts & copy for 50+ display ads, and ended up at the headquarters with a job devoted to advertising and media.
Where they had no corporate image before, they had a definitive identity and measurable success among their competitors.
And then — they laid me off. I had no hard feelings. I was ready to jump. (Besides, they immediately hired me freelance to write and produce their quarterly newsletter.)
I set up my own business, becoming the idea person (creative content developer) and multi-media writer for small businesses and organizations. I put together teams of other independent creative people – small marketing agencies, web designers, videographers, art designers, photographers, whatever the client needed.
Because of what I learned, I’ve gotten to work with super-cool people (like Lisa Ling, Robert Ballard, and Jack Nicklaus) and organizations (like National Geographic).
Creative thinking, content development, multi-media writing, new media, social media, editing – that’s me now.
I’m grown up but still geeky at heart.
I’m an informed, versatile, and authentic industry voice helping businesses deliver vital messages to their audiences in effective ways. I do it with expertise, professionalism, and highly developed people skills.
An even faster way: Follow me on Twitter. I can help you. We’ll be talking before you know it.