The Surprising Day Jobs of 20 Famous Writers

Where You Start is Not Where You End Up

We all start somewhere.


“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” -Arthur Ashe

 

When we look at successful adults, we think of them as rock stars, politicians, actors and powerful leaders. Most successful people I know have humble beginnings. One of the things I love to ask celebrities is about their first jobs. We often compare notes, and I tell stories of my teenage years where I would often work all day washing dishes by hand, and then change clothes and bus tables all night. And I wouldn’t change that experience for anything.

Our favorite writers are no different with jobs ranging from exterminator (Williams S. Burroughs) to a construction worker (John Steinbeck) to an airline reservation clerk (Harper Lee).

Here’s an infographic that demonstrates that where you start doesn’t have to be where you end up.


“If all difficulties were known at the outset of a long journey, most of us would never start out at all.” -Dan Rather

 

Surprising-day-jobs-of-writers-infographic

 

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Infographic courtesy of ExpertEditor.

What’s Your TACT-ometer Reading?

This is a guest post by Judy Nelson. Coach Judy Nelson has golfed with presidents, been heckled by famous comedians, and researched insurance policies for riding elephants on behalf of Zsa Zsa Gábor—and those were the ordinary days! Her new book, Intentional Leadership debuts in January.

“Tact is an ability to live in the midst of ugliness without getting ugly.” –Debasish Mridha

 

What’s Your TACT-ometer Reading?

A tachometer in a car measures the rotation of the crankshaft. A TACT-ometer in a leader measures the rotation of the crankiness or degree of rudeness they reveal and inspire in others. Leaders everywhere would be wise to make sure their TACT-ometer is functioning well—or take it in for a tune-up.

In a manual transmission, the tachometer serves a significant role for the vehicle’s engine maintenance. It helps the driver select an appropriate gear for driving conditions. It denotes the maximum safe range for rotation speeds, which when exceeded are indicated in red. When a driver operates the car while the tachometer reads in the red areas, it’s called redlining the engine. Prolonged extreme redlining in the tachometer may cause less than optimum performance that could cause excessive wear and tear or permanent damage to the vehicle’s engine (And in case you were wondering if I knew all this before, I didn’t. Thank you, Wikipedia.)

A TACT-ometer is a gauge for your mouth. It serves a significant role for your team’s morale maintenance. It helps the speaker select appropriate words for working conditions. It denotes the maximum safe range for lack of tact, which when exceeded leaves the speaker’s recipient red with embarrassment (or rage). When a speaker regularly operates in the red zone, I call it redlining the team. Prolonged extreme tactlessness or extreme tact may cause less than optimum communication and conflict that could cause excessive wear or permanent damage to relationships. (Sadly, I learned this concept through experience, not Wikipedia.)

 

“Tact is the art of making a point without making an enemy.” –Isaac Newton

 

I use the Workplace Big 5 Profile 4.0™ Assessments to help my clients assess their performance on the TACT-ometer. The Workplace Big 5 Profile stimulates changes in self-awareness and identifies ways to maximize your natural talents in a manner that works with your natural energy levels.

Some people who score in the 0 to 35 range don’t believe they lack tact. In fact, the harshest person you know may think that he or she is just being direct and even kind because telling the absolute truth is the right thing to do. Who can argue that much of the time telling the absolute truth is the right thing to do?

 

“Tact is the ability to step on a man’s toes without messing up the shine on his shoes.” –Harry Truman

 

And who can argue that there are times when it isn’t?

The definition of tact can vary depending on the area where you live. Take, for instance, the different regions of the U.S. In one part of the country, being direct (up to and including the point of being blunt) is not only accepted but also expected. In another region, extreme politeness is the norm. These expectations tend to stay with you even when you leave the area you consider “normal.” When people with different definitions of tact work together, office tension is often the result.

Copyright Judy Nelson, Used by Permission Copyright Judy Nelson, Used by Permission

Knowing your natural tendencies regarding tact could help you to choose more consciously what you say and how you say it—i.e., to manage your mouth strategically. I advise my clients to use I-messages. I-messages create responses that feel less accusatory. They demonstrate more tact when used correctly. Unlike You-messages, (e.g. “you always interrupt” or “why don’t you just…?”) I-messages focus on the feelings of the speaker rather than the person they are addressing. They provide a tactful way to deliver a direct response.

 

The Right Words Matter

When it comes to how you communicate, let’s face it: The right words matter!

34 Quotes to Motivate You on Monday

Monday Motivation

Monday is a day of beginnings and new starts. It’s a day where the week is before you and possibilities are endless. Begin the week with momentum and you’ll look back with great satisfaction on all you achieved.

On the other hand, Monday can also be stressful. It’s back to work time. You may be facing a bad boss or a negative work environment. It’s the highest day of the week for heart attacks.

So let’s make this Monday one of the good ones. One where you demonstrate the power of a positive attitude and rocket toward your goals.

Here are some Monday Motivation quotes to get your work week started:

 

“The future depends on what you do today.” –Mahatma Gandhi

 

“Either you run the day or the day runs you.” –Jim Rohn

 

“People often say that motivation doesn’t last.  Well, neither does bathing. That’s why we recommend it daily.” –Zig Ziglar

 

“Don’t wait on perfect conditions for success to happen; just go ahead and do something.” –Dan Miller

 

“People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.” –Maya Angelou

 

“Complaining about a problem without posing a solution is called whining.” –Teddy Roosevelt

 

“If you can dream it, you can do it.” –Walt Disney

 

“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings.” –Lao Tzu

 

“Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.” –Helen Keller

 

“What seems to us as bitter trials are often blessings in disguise.” –Oscar Wilde

 

“You’re 100% responsible for your life. Stop whining and do something about it.” –Mathieu Fortin

 

“Be so good they can’t ignore you.” –Steve Martin

 

“When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen, you may learn something new.” –Dalai Lama

 

“Hope is brightest when it dawns from fears.” –Walter Scott

 

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

“Your best days are still out in front of you.” –Joel Osteen

 

“Make each day a masterpiece.” -John Wooden

 

“Imagine no limitations; decide what’s right and desirable before you decide what’s possible.” –Brian Tracy

 

“A ship is always safe at shore but that is not what it’s built for.” –Albert Einstein

 

“If you can’t outplay them, outwork them.” –Ben Hogan

 

“She quietly expected great things to happen to her, and no doubt that’s one of the reasons why they did.” –Zelda Fitzgerald

 

“All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.” –Walt Disney

 

“Set your goals high, and don’t stop till you get there.” –Bo Jackson