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Getting out ... just to get out

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Hey Diaz!, Feb 8, 2013.

  1. PEteacher

    PEteacher Member

    That is absolutely false. There was nothing in sports journalism that I experienced (and I have helped cover the championships of all three major sports) that came close to the highs (or even "mid-levels") of my current job of high school teacher, which comes when you make a genuine difference in a kid's life.
  2. WriteThinking

    WriteThinking Well-Known Member

    Another key to the transition is to be open-minded about other possibilities.

    You never know, for certain, what you might really like, or not, if you haven't tried it.

    Other fields are not necessarily boring. They're different, and you'll get your kicks from different things, but that doesn't mean you'd be bored. I'm in retail now -- a department manager at a Walmart store -- and I can honest say I've been shocked at how much I like it. It keeps me just as busy, it is just as demanding and just as stressful in many ways as newspapers ever were, and there are smart, on-the-ball people in this business, too, when you look, realize it, and respect that possibility.

    You have to lose the idea that nothing can replace sportswriting, but there is satisfaction to be had outside of journalism. I don't make as much money as I used to -- yeah, I guess I really know how to pick 'em when it comes to money-making fields -- but frankly, that is the only negative thing that I wish was different now.

    I'm on a new path that I hope will lead to bigger and better things, and it very well could. And, it appears it could happen much more quickly than it ever did in newspapers. Be open-minded and open-hearted and good things can happen in any business.
  3. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    I "sell" art in the gallery these days. Some days I'm very good. I kind of use the Glengarry Glen Ross train of thought in that people want to be sold -- and they will let you sell them.

    I've talked people into buying some really cool stuff, and there have been times I thought I had someone -- seriously had them -- until they decided at the last second not to buy. Those are the killers. Thought I sold a $1,900 marble piece a month ago. Said and did everything perfectly. Then he didn't buy it. That was a crusher.

    That said, I like the whole gamesmanship of sales.
  4. da man

    da man Well-Known Member

    If I had to sell anything for a living, I'd starve pretty damn quick.
  5. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    This is how things shook out:

    I was fired in late June. The gallery owners (best friend, his wife) had all but quit on the gallery after 12 years. Ready to liquidate the inventory, final blow-out sale, then lock the doors. They were going on a 7-week summer vacation with their 3 daughters (my goddaughters).

    Instead, I show up and keep the doors open. The owner didn't think I'd sell more than $500 worth of work. But in my first 12 weeks I sold $18,000. Then the foliage crowd rolled in and I sold another $16,000. It's not like I did anything special. I just showed up every morning. I talked with customers, made them feel comfy, played the game. More than a few times I actually "sold" them something by talking them into the sale. Being a reporter and editor for 23 years certainly helped because you learn how to communicate with people.

    So now the owners went from ready to close shop to pretty much letting me manage the gallery with a renewed push for the future. He's at the Philly art show this weekend buying inventory for the spring and summer seasons. I've committed to them for the foreseeable future. I still wrestle with thoughts of wanting to report again but that mental battle subsides more and more each day. Plus, I do plenty of writing and stuff on my blog so the creative side gets a daily workout.

    I manage an art gallery and sell art. In Vermont. Definitely not a dream.
  6. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    That's pretty awesome. Good job.
  7. Riptide

    Riptide Well-Known Member

    Xan, you should get back to newspapers right away.

    I'd be happy to come take over that lousy job for you ... ;)
  8. JackS

    JackS Member

    Ditto. In fact, one of my jobs was a combo on-air/sales gig, and I just could not hack the sales part of it. I lasted 6 weeks.

    I don't doubt that there are people like Xan who could do both. But I don't think that has anything to do with journalism skills translating, like the other professions listed do. Even Xan's story sounds totally like a lightning strike.
  9. da man

    da man Well-Known Member

    BTW, Xan, when you mentioned the "Glengarry Glen Ross train of thought," the first thing that popped into my head was:

    "As you all know, first prize is a Cadillac Eldorado. ... Second prize is a set of steak knives. Third prize is you're fired."

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
  10. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    If I do you'll be the first person I call.

    Tell you what, watching people browse through an art gallery is one of the more entertaining things I've been able to experience in my working career. On top of that, most of them let me into their lives once I ask "So where are you coming from?" and then the conversations begin.
  11. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    I'm aiming for that El Dorado, always.
  12. spud

    spud Member

    But, and let's be honest here, the busywork, stress and demand of sports journalism are easily the things I hate most about it. That doesn't sound like much of a ringing endorsement.
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