ABJH Excerpt: The Challenge of Changing Specialities

Today, we continue to run excerpts from my new book, Always Be Job Hunting to give you the flavor of the book and encourage you to check it out on Amazon.com

Chapter 5: Changing Specialities

Switching specialties within a career can be difficult. I was too naïve when I switched to magazine from newspaper reporting and writing. I didn’t think there’d be much of a difference. After all, I’d written longer newspaper feature stories, how different could magazine writing be?

Very different, as I soon found out. I rushed through my first few assignments thinking I was doing fine. Until the day I ran into the publisher, in the men’s room, a wonderful man who would soon retire, who asked me how things were going. I said fine, but offered that I felt like I didn’t have enough work. He gently suggested it would be ok to take a little more time with my stories. Eventually, I came to realize what he meant. Magazine writing and reporting is a world away from the newspaper work. I had to learn a new specialty within my chosen profession.

Finding a job is like fighting a war, the more weapons you have, the better.

Finding a job is like fighting a war, the more weapons you have, the better.

While I might interview three or four people for a local newspaper story I now for a national publication and to get a national perspective I might interview 15, 20 or more people for a feature story. This many interviews meant organizing mountains of notes. In my first newspaper job I often organized and wrote 500 word stories in my head as I called in from village board meetings.. Now I was writing 2,000 to 3,000-word stories.

It was a challenge. I needed a narrative theme for a feature story, along with supporting data, and a flair for story telling that often wasn’t needed in a typical newspaper story that contained “just the facts”.

How did I tackle this?

Intrigued? Click here to go to Amazon.com to buy the book in either paperback or Kindle editions.

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