Before I was an author of books, I was a writer of columns. I began writing for California Riding Magazine (based in San Diego), which had a mostly jumping/dressage/English-style focus. Knowing that I ride Western, they set me to work covering western shows, interviewing western riders and trainers, and writing advertorials for whatever they needed. I completely enjoyed my work with them.
A few years after writing for them, I pitched a slice-of-life humor column to my local newspaper, The Placentia News-Times. I’ve always been in love with humor essays, seeking them out in every paper or magazine I picked up. In general, I’m a humorous person who likes to tell funny stories, and I share a birthday with Erma Bombeck, which means I was perfect for the assignment!
I wrote possibly the worst query letter in the history of query letters and should have never gotten the gig. Luck and the Universe (I hesitate to think that God wasted his time on this) gave me a gift: the paper had just lost an advice columnist and needed to fill the space. The bad news was that the columnist had done their work for free (advertising for her business), so I’d have to be unpaid until they got a budget to pay me. This was a column a week until January.
It was now March. Of course I accepted.
I’ve been writing ever since 2005. I’m now writing every other week, due to the pandemic, but it’s still a great thing to look forward to.