Sometimes when I read author bios at the end of the book or on a writer’s about page I am always impressed with the jobs we do that aren’t writing.
While part of me kicks myself for not going into a more lucrative career path, like investment banking, I know that all the waitressing, lifeguarding, amusement park working, swimming lessons teaching, and of course working backstage have given me great opportunity to work with people, to observe people.
It is the observing people that makes me good at the jobs I’ve held.
About a year ago I took on a job as a lifeguard and swimming lesson instructor to make up for less money coming in at my full time job. It has meant less time for writing but it has also helped my writing.
As a swim lesson instructor we mainly teach kids how to swim and tailoring lessons to different age groups and presenting material to the children in an engaging way has improved my writing.
When I sit down to write a picture book draft for 12×12 I have a better idea of my audience and the need to write in an engaging way for that audience.
In my job as a swim lesson instructor we engage the children’s imagination, we get them to answer questions, we let them shine and show off their knowledge.
Usually I leave swim lessons full of ideas of how to make something work better in my writing.
Does your day job make you a better writer?