Hardship builds CHARACTER
There are times in your life when you go through hardships and you look back and say “This made me a better person by building my character.” One of those times occurred back in 2003. I’ve always wanted to be an entrepreneur and start my own business and after I was laid-off in 2001 I struck out on my own and did just that. The .com bust had occurred, many were unemployed but I was undeterred by this and thought that someone with my publishing credentials at that time could make a go of it helping small to mid-sized publishers with their manufacturing needs.
Entrepreneurship: Phase 1
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This first foray into a consulting role had its pitfalls. Consulting on a one-to-one basis always meant that your return on investment needed to be high and spread out among a few different publishing concerns. Rather than building a web-portal for digital reference materials, as I am doing now, the thought never entered my mind that reaching more people would be a touchstone toward building a lucrative and informative publishing corporate structure. As it turned out, one company in particular began to take up more and more of my time. After about eight months they made the decision that the functions I was providing should be brought in-house under their corporate umbrella instead of using me in a contract position. The playing field had changed and I was caught without a backup. One of the takeaways I learned is that you always market yourself. You continually get the word out about who you are through writing articles, blog posts, tweets, and YouTube videos. All of these are essential at this point time, but were not in existence back in 2003 for me to use.
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The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing: History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle
One of my former supervisors had always told me that if I ever decided to move back to New York from Colorado there would be a job ready for me. With this information in mind and family ill-health as a background, I packed up my apartment and moved back to New York. When I got back to New York I was wined and dined and not given the job. Another learning experience, people are friends and mentors but when personal gain conflicts with the relationship the relationship will take a hit. Now I was back in New York, publishing capital of the world, but living in a situation where I could not commute to Manhattan because I was 100 miles out on the end of Long Island. This is where the Wenner family and their bakery in Bellport, Long Island come into the story (The Wenner Family have just recently sold the plant).
Wenner to the Rescue
My sister had always been friends with the Wenners and I knew them as well from High School. When I needed a position just to make ends meet they gave me a hand- UP. They knew that I would not be there as a long-term employee and they still took me on and gave me the opportunity to get back on my feet. For this help I will always be grateful to them. Now the Wenner Bread factory in Bellport Long Island employed 600 people at that time and was busy on a 24-hour basis turning out bread, rolls, and specialty breads. I worked in the tool-crib for roughly a little over a year getting parts, tools and all types of equipment that the on-site mechanics needed to keep the conveyors moving. I was a fix-it go-fer for the company. It was a time in my life that I will never forget and it gave me the impetus to move forward and know that “this too shall pass.”
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Survival is the Yeast That Ensures A New Rise
It wasn’t beneath me to work in the factory. It was not the worst experience of my life. It was an experience that tempered me and forged a resolve to never quit, and never give up. I do not believe in handouts from the government, but when needed it is necessary to survive. I believe in hard work, I believe in doing what you have to do to make ends meet, and I believe that everything in your life happens for a reason.
I am drinking in all that is surrounding me at this point in time because I know this will not last and a new day is rising. Giving-Back is a huge part of what I am all about and I will be helping as many people as I can with book projects and corporate ladder-climbing through my digital materials.
Be an Experience “SPONGE”
Drink in the moment whether good or bad; there is always something to be learned from the bread you are given.