I was one of those odd little kids who wanted to work before I was out of grade school. I may have been homely little red-head, but in my mind, I was Mary Richards, the television news writer played by Mary Tyler Moore. When I turned 13, someone gave me a subscription to Seventeen magazine. Poring over those issues from cover to cover, it dawned on me that it was plausible to make a living by stringing words together.
I’m living proof that we become whatever we think about. After getting undergraduate degrees in public relations and journalism, I started working as a radio reporter and later moved into sales. Eventually, I became a corporate storyteller, writing and designing in-house magazines for employees and stockholders.
My freelance life began in the mid-1990s. I liked it so much that I left my job to pursue it full-time in 1999. I had second thoughts in 2002. The information age was really ramping up. When everyone became a writer, I worried that there would be less work for people like me. So I took what I loved—working with people and information—and got an advanced degree in information science.
I worked in public libraries and moonlighted as a freelance writer from 2004 to 2011. As I grew busier, I realized the demand for online content was not smaller. It was bigger than ever. I returned to my full-time freelance career in 2011 with renewed zeal and updated skills, built for the times.
I’m still amazed that people pay me to do the very thing I love most: writing. I am ever grateful for the opportunities I have to know so many interesting people and to tell stories that spark wonder, discovery, inspiration and learning.