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Career Story: Public Relations Consultant And Playwright

Public Relations Consultant And Playwright

Job Title: PR Consultant, Creativity Consultant, Artist, Director

Type of Company: I am a freelance consultant. As an artist my mission is to create both visual and theatrical works which elicit a response.

Education: BA, Theatre/Communications, Western Illinois University •• graduate credits in theatre, Southern Oregon University

Previous Experience: Ten years as a radio journalist in Denver, Milwaukee, San Jose and Sacramento gave me the public relations skills to work as a consultant. I began as a radio journalist after hurting my back and going back to school. I've always been a visual and theatrical artist. Ten years of working in a news room honed my writing skills for both PR and plays.

Job Tasks: As an artist, my job is to "keep the channel open" for any and all creativity. It's important to do the work every day whether as a visual or theatrical artist. Being an artist is hard work that demands honesty and dedication.

As a public relations consultant, my job is to write news releases for events and products. A news release, which contains the who, what, where, when and why of the event or product is then sent to editors at newspapers, magazines, radio and TV stations in hopes that they will want to do a piece about the event or product.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The hardest part of being an artist is to keep creating, no matter what. The other hard part of being an artist is being able to sell the work, whether it's a theatrical concept or a piece of visual art.

The hardest part of being a PR Consultant is reminding the client that there are many other things going on in the world and sometimes the media will ignore you.

Job Tips: Because being an artist is difficult financially, all artists should have a "day job". You need to be able to support yourself when your art doesn't sell. And don't believe the person who said that voice-overs are easier to get than other acting jobs. They are NOT. Take as many classes in the arts as you can and if you intend to go to graduate school, make sure that the school has an internship program for students at either a museum, art center or theatre.

For PR jobs, study journalism and marketing in college as well as the humanities. Work on the college newspaper or radio station or try to get an internship with local media.

As any kind of a consultant, it's sometimes difficult to get the clients to pay in a timely manner.

Additional Thoughts: It surprises me that I learn something new with each show I direct and each piece of art I make. If I could do things over again, I would not have dropped out of college in my sophomore year and taken 20 years to complete my degree.

The most important personal qualities for my careers, or any job for that matter, are honesty, loyalty and the ability to be a self-starter.

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