Friday, February 04, 2011

And the winner of the Ashley Employer Lottery is. . .

well, me, of course. Because I've got a job. But the employer isn't getting a bad deal, either, because I work my ass off, as a rule.

And the lucky employer is. . .SAGE publishing, a higher education textbook, reference book and journal publisher. On Monday, I begin my tenure as the PR Manager. I get to continue management (or as Amanda quoted to me "We can put you in a position to be over as many as four people"--except that was Office Space and my new gig puts me over 2--one of which I'll have to hire), I get to work with the upper management and build the brand externally, and I get to learn a new industry. All of which are very exciting.

The things I really liked about SAGE were that it is an independently owned publishing house--which is highly unusual--and the owner has set up an endowment to keep it that way. The place feels like its on the precipice--at that crossroads where its trying to figure out how to expand while keeping the relationships and service that made it successful in the first place. And that's kind of fun.

I also got to meet a LOT of the upper management and the CEO during the interview process and they were all easy to get along with and understand. Plus the HR department sent me chocolate covered strawberries to welcome me to the team. Which was exceptionally sweet and Chef will very much enjoy them.

So on Monday I get to bust out my heels and cute work attire and head back into the fray. The one downfall is that there is about a 45 minute drive (with light traffic) to get there--up to 90 minutes in heavy traffic to get home. That's going to be a change from the usual 8 minute commute I had at the AHA. Which got me thinking back to my longest commute. Two of the longest commutes I had were 35 and 40 minutes to Princeton and Mount Vernon, respectively. Which kind of made me chuckle that my longest commutes thus far weren't in the city but my Indiana home.

So the commute is gonna have to become a useful time for me. I've decided to use it to do a couple things:
  1. Listen to Mike & Mike and sports talk radio. Mike & Mike ends at 7 a.m. here, and in time, I'll be able to keep 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. hours at the new job. So that means, extra sports chatter. And until then, I'll listen to regular sports talk to get my sports jones in without sacrificing any Chef time, as he's not a fan.
  2. Flush out my arguments. For a debate? Against Chef? What kind of arguments? All valid questions. The answer lies in Chuck Klosterman. Thank you, Greg, for introducing me to him and his wonderfully sarcastic essays. They've already got me thinking and that thinking takes time--so I'll use the commute to flush out some weird arguments to write. And be prepared for this blog to shift it's tone a little. I feel like I may have pulled some punches lately to buffer things from any potential employers or to keep from offending. But I've decided its time to be a little offensive.
  3. Books on tape. Anyone got any good suggestions? I've never been a big audio book fans because I like to visualize my literature and its harder for me to visualize words that I'm listening to rather than words that I'm reading. Is anyone else like that? Does this mean that I'm a visual learner? I guess it does. I usually take notes as people are talking to me so that I can see the important words they're saying. It helps me remember better. I may never look at the notes again, but just writing them and seeing them help me.
  4. And last, but not least, I need to use the time to be inside my head for a little while. I need to let my mind wander and go places that it shouldn't. I need to be my characters for a while and use the time to write. I might even get a voice recorder to see if I can transcribe anything later that could be useful.
So, that's my life and work coming up. Wish me luck on Monday. I feel good about it.

1 comment:

Roy Burkhead said...

Hey Ashley:

Congrats on the new job, and in publishing no less!!! Well done.

For the past four years, my round trip daily commute has been 3 hours a day. 15 hours a week, give or take a few minutes. I seem to be living out of my car. In fact, I have been through THREE cars in the past four years: 97 Seabring, 2008 Jeep, and now a 2009 Caliber. Spend some money to make the inside of your car as comfortable as possible.

I would pass on the books on tape since most of those cost a bit too much money.

If you don't already have an iPod, think of getting one. My primary source of programming is Podcasts, i.e.: radio-esk programs made for the Internet. These are FREE and located on iTunes. There are two kinds:

- Programs made specifically to be downloaded from iTunes; and
- Traditional programs from radio stations that make their content available, for free, via iTunes.

And you don't have to own an apple computer to download them. There is an iTunes version for Windows.

In addition, there is a third type of free programming available on iTunes. It's known as iTunesU. These are all sorts of programming coming from U.S. Universities, all for free.

Oh, I do buy some audio programs from iTunes store, but 90 percent of the stuff I download is FREE and WONDERFUL.

Congrats on the new job. I will keep reading your blog for additional adventures from the coast. And you can find me at:

All my best, ROy


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