Working at Lilac James and the awesome door it's opened!

“Jane that is F*%£!#@ amazing. AWESOME. You have to start a blog. You must.  I love your writing style and so will everyone else.”

When I started work at Lilac James earlier this year, I hadn’t realised back then the pleasure I would get from writing.  Our client base is wide and varied, so when I first started writing articles for the purpose of content marketing, there was an abundance of subject matter.  By conducting some research, and picking the brains of my extensively knowledgeable colleagues (they’re all genius!), I was soon writing about a variety of subjects for a broad range of clients.  At this stage it’s fair to say that I was a jack of all trades, and master of none.  Well, on paper at any rate!

As a child, I’d never loved school.  It was all about the social for me, and I didn’t push myself half as much as I could or indeed should have.  But I always loved to read, and I seemed to be able to hold my own in English.  I wouldn’t say that I ever excelled, but I could certainly churn out a decent essay. Who knew that 30 years later I’d be calling on those rusty ol’ skills to earn my bread and butter?!

Outside of work, life at home is quiet.  The last of my 3 daughters left home for university last year and since then I’ve been feeling a bit redundant.  As my partner and son have a mutual love for whacking and chasing small balls around the countryside, they’re out of the house most weekends which leaves me with even more time on my hands.  I came to the realisation that I needed a hobby and as I was so enjoying the writing aspect of my job, I started to wonder whether I could write at home; just for me; just for something to do; just for fun.

The seed was planted.  It remained a private thought for a while until I happened to discuss it with my boss (and founder of Lilac James), Karen.  I told her that I’d been thinking about maybe starting a blog but that I wasn’t quite sure that I had the confidence to put my ramblings ‘out there’; to expose myself, for everyone to read.  Or worse still, for no-one to read.  Ever the optimist, Karen assured me that my writing was good; I had a style that people would identify with and that she would support me in any way she could.  I wasn’t convinced….

One Sunday a few weeks ago I sat in my living room with the TV on but watching nothing.  Switching it over to one of the radio stations I weighed up the choices for the next couple of hours’ ‘entertainment’.  I could either get the hoover out and spring clean the house, or I could get my laptop out and spring clean my mind.  Ignoring the housework, I chose the latter.

As I trawled through my memory banks in search of some inspiration, my eyes fell upon a picture on my living room wall; a picture of my son; my gift from God. My inspiration was there, smiling down at me from 10 feet across the room.  I began writing.

Later that evening I emailed my first blog piece to Karen.  I had loved writing it and was really proud of it, and even though I knew it was quite good, I still didn’t have confidence in myself, telling her that I didn’t think blogging was for me and that I might try and get it published on a site somewhere at some point.  She emailed me back with the response you read at the beginning of this post.  Oh, how I gushed!

Since then, I really have hit the ground running.  With Karen’s help and input, we’ve brainstormed, named my blog, bought a domain, got my site hosted and finally up and running. I am ever conscious that my writing has to be honest; it’s my life laid bare.

I would like to dedicate this post to the best boss, the best mentor and the best friend an ol’ bird like me can have.  Thank you, Karen James, for your faith, encouragement and belief in me.

My name is Jane: I AM A BLOGGER!

Photo credit: Karen James & Jane Taylor c.2010