I was in 4-H when I was a kid. I remember we got paid money for completing projects, so like a good entrepreneur, I chose to sign up for a lot so I could make more money.
One of the projects I took was flower arranging, where I learned that with deliberate placement of blooms and buds of different sizes and color, you could lead the eye through the arrangement.
In college, my first “real” job was at a shopper newspaper where my job was to layout ads. I found myself using the lessons of flower arranging to size and place the headline and text in a way to lead the eye through the ad.
And then I majored in advertising.
After college, I became a copywriter. At my first job at an advertising agency, I was in charge of recording others voicing radio commercials using a very simple set-up. My next several jobs were in tv and radio. While working as a copywriter at WSM Radio, I began writing and producing a syndicated radio show, a job I had for a decade and a half. That’s where I learned how to edit audio and also how to work on a website, some of the gigs I did when I freelanced.
Now, I’m an independent author, and while I have had to learn a whole new set of skills, I still draw on everything I’ve learned so far. Tasks such as marketing, managing social media, designing a website, creating a book trailer, writing dialogue, editing audio – I’ve had previous experience with it all.
As babies, from the moment we recognize that when we cry we get food, we begin learning. And the knowledge and experience and wisdom accumulate. It’s, of course, intimidating to start new jobs and launch new careers. But I’ve come to realize that even when we start over, we are never starting from scratch.