I volunteer on several boards, and at a recent meeting the organizer asked a “warm up” question to get the group ready for work. She asked: “Tell us about a meaningful extra curricular activity you did as a child or teen.”
Not being athletic or musical, my extra curriculars were mostly academic — like the Yearbook Committee. As a high school junior I applied to be a writer or editor, but the advisor said my writing wasn’t good enough. So, for two years I was a typist — typing up other people’s stories about high school activities and events.
But it was a meaningful experience for me. It inspired me to do better — to prove to that high school English teacher that I could write.
In college, as a journalism major, I practiced my craft as a writer. I applied for a reporting job at the SDSU Collegian. And they hired me. For three years I wrote stories about college life, about campus happenings and about community activities. My writing was good enough that I was promoted to Senior Reporter where I did investigative reporting. I worked hard to improve my writing. I looked for compelling human interest narratives. I found unexpected angles in news and feature stories. I loved telling those stories.
I made a career as a copywriter.
I still like to write. And, hopefully people like what I’m writing.