Thursday, September 04, 2008

In retrospect

How did you pick your work-at-home mom job? Did you choose something you've always loved doing?

Ever since I was old enough to hold a pencil, I have been writing. I penned several books as a child, including one that was circulated in all the third-grade classrooms, much to the chagrin of a painfully shy eight-year-old! I scribbled poems throughout my adolescence and was editor of the school newspaper during my final two years of high school.

I got my official start in the newspaper business as a brand new high school graduate in May of 1988. I worked as a writer and photographer and later an editor in the office until December 2003. During these years I wrote news, took photographs, and worked in page design while learning the ins and outs of newspapering strictly by experience.

I started freelancing in January 2004. I began writing human interest pieces for a nearby daily newspaper each week and advertorial material for another area newspaper on a regular basis. Later I began to write feature pieces for that newspaper, too.

In the summer of 2004, I began writing for the state newspaper's three zoned editions that it publishes twice a week.

My newspaper freelancing went smoothly for a couple of years, and then I tossed something new in there -- newsletter production. When I contacted a nonprofit organization with which I was very well familiar from my days in the newspaper office to do a freelance piece, they asked me to consider taking over their quarterly newsletter. Finally, I agreed. A few months after that another nonprofit organization that I got to know as a freelancer asked me about taking over their newsletter, and we got that started. Earlier this year a consultant for two nonprofits contacted me requesting work.

Along the way I acquired another newspaper job (I was referred to them by a current client) and ended two because of the distance; and one of the newsletter jobs was ended for budgeting reasons.

I have to say I never expected to be doing newsletters but it is quite enjoyable because I get to use all my newspaper skills -- writing, photography, editing, and design -- all in one concise publication.

The newspaper pieces are all very enjoyable as well, since I'm writing about wonderful people and places right where I live.

Looking back on my many years of writing, I seem to have let my words take me where they wanted me to go. This has opened up new avenues of writing for me, and I delight in the experience.

Tell me about your work-at-home mom job!

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