I have been writing professionally since the mid-1990s. I was working at Microsoft and creating a curriculum to accompany their short-lived CD-ROM-based encyclopedia. On a regular basis, the network would crash and there was nothing to do – trapped in the ‘burbs, pre-Internet, surrounded by vaguely hostile, nerdy developers. So I would write.
The first thing I wrote was about the volunteer work I was doing at the time for a women’s clinic. It was just fun to write; I had little intention of doing anything with it. So I was surprised when I sent it into the local indie newspaper and they published it. A few months later, a new online magazine, Salon, reprinted it.
Today, writer is a hat that I wear in conjunction with others. I write because it is often my strongest and most agile tool for exploring a situation. Or it is the way that I am best able to contribute to a collaborative process. Whether I’m writing for a client or purely for myself, it’s a similar journey of curiosity and truth telling.