I told you last Monday that after years of writing and with only winning a few contests, I decided to go back to school. And that decision sent me down an unexpected path on my journey to publication.
I loved college! I attended the University of Utah. Being among all that energy and knowledge was fantastic. The only thing I really hated: the tests.
Oh my stars! I'd study for an entire week before an exam. I did all right, but it was a challenge. Not only was I going to school, but I was working part-time as well. There were days I wondered why I was getting up at five in the morning so I could get a couple of classes in before work. Was I crazy? Probably, but I was also driven. I'd always felt as though I'd missed out not going to college. I attended year round for three years. As I neared graduation, I decided to apply for an internship at Continuum, the university's magazine. There was a great deal of competition for the job. I was totally shocked when I got it.
But taking the internship meant I had to leave my part-time job that I'd had for many years. I loved my friends at work. Leaving them was very hard, but we still get together every Christmas to catch up with each other.
My internship was a privilege. I met some fantastic people and learned what goes on in the magazine world. They even published one of my articles, which was a real kick. As I neared the end of my internship, I started looking for a full-time job, hoping to use my writing skills. I applied for a technical writing position at a curriculum publishing company that made educational computer games, lessons, and books.
I was totally surprised when the boss called and offered me the job. I worked with computer programmers, graphic artists, and writers. Of course, I wanted to get in on writing the books. Not only was I able to write nine children books, but for a while I was in charge of the math and science books for first and second grade students.
I'd probably still be working there. Thank heavens fate stepped in and reminded me what I really wanted to do . . . write fiction.