The Long and Winding Road to Writing


I was thinking today about the various jobs I’ve had since I was sixteen (when I first legally entered the workforce — that night I was paid cash for doing inventory at Levine’s in Irving doesn’t count!), and I came up with this (in no particular order):

  • Taco Bell crewmember
  • University library assistant
  • Fuddrucker’s waitress (1 day)
  • Sears associate (2 days)
  • Warehouse clerk
  • Mailroom clerk
  • Chiropractic assistant
  • Library page/assistant
  • English teacher in Japan
  • Research assistant at trade association
  • Collator at real estate agency (1 day – temp job)
  • Secretary at 2 different nonprofit associations
  • Program officer at international nonprofit
  • Newsletter managing editor
  • Research assistant at university
  • Executive assistant
  • Grant writer/director
  • Mary Kay sales representative
  • IT Help Desk at Fortune 100 company
  • Sales/project assistant for German energy company
  • Fundraiser for PBS/NPR affiliate
  • Renewable energy developer for Irish company
  • Wedding photographer (own business)
  • Freelance writer (current gig)

These are what come to mind. I’m sure I’ve forgotten a few over the years, but I have to admit, looking back on this rather long list, I have to ask: With a track record like that, what the hell possessed these people to hire me???

And the second realization is that while it was a very long, circuitous route to figuring out that, uh, yeah, I really do just want to write, my consolation is that I have tons of things to write about.

Oh, and that I suck at office work. (And yes, I have been fired at least once. Although technically I’d already stopped going to the office before they officially fired me, so I suppose that doesn’t really count. Does it?)


2 thoughts on “The Long and Winding Road to Writing

  1. Hi, Marjorie! It’s great to see you back. šŸ™‚ You’ve got such a wonderful wealth of experience to draw upon as a writer. You’ve done a wide range of things in your life, and now, as a writer, you can use that knowledge in your fiction, for your characters. That’s fabulous!I hear you on the office job thing. I worked in a university office for almost fourteen years before I left to pursue writing full-time. And if I’d stayed much longer I would have become as entrenched as the Marianas. šŸ™‚ So leaving was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I think if I’d stayed I might have fossilized. šŸ˜‰ I’m still working on getting a novel out there in the wide world, but I love what I do — writing and thriving — and that’s what’s important!Good luck with your freelance writing, and with finishing your novel! I recall reading earlier posts you made about your novel in progress, and it sounds like it’s going to be great. šŸ™‚ You’re very inspirational, my friend!

  2. Hi, Thomma Lyn! Yeah, I’ve got a half dozen or so ideas for future novels just based on the million jobs I’ve had. I’ve found that my tolerance level for the typical 9-5 jobs has diminished considerably over the years. At first I could tolerate — even <>enjoy<> — them for at least two years. Then it became 1.5 years. Then 1 year. Over the last few years I’ve discovered that the threshold has become six months. Eek! At this rate I’ll be temping for a week and no more. šŸ˜‰Anyway, I’m really raring to go with NaNoWriMo. I love that there will be hundreds (dare I say thousands?) out there who’ll be doing the same thing. Thank you so much for your kind and inspiring comments. I’m so glad to be back on the blogosphere and am looking forward to reading <>your<> blog!!Cheers,Marjorie

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