As a writer, my great joy has been that of being editor of Lifestyles After 50 magazine for 17 years. During most of that time, the name of the magazine was Senior Connection, and I was teaching in the Hillsborough County School system, which frequently meant very long nights at the computer.

My writing began when I was mothering three preschool sons. My first attempts at writing included a monthly column in a local magazine titled “A Yankee Moves South.” I typed my first published articles on a turquoise Royal portable typewriter which I placed on top of a chest of drawers. Why? Because if I sat at the desk or table, the boys had a hundred needs for my attention. If I stood and typed, they didn’t bother me. Now I work from home on my Dell computer in a quiet office space with a lovely view.

I know my writing is in part the result of my mother’s incredible love affair with words. She got her education reading the newspaper, and she loved saying words in fun and mischievous ways. She quoted wonderful rhyming poetry for us, poems she had memorized at her country school in Iowa. The language of the King James Bible was manna for her quick brain and she taught us that “you can easily pronounce any name in there because it’s all marked in phonics.”

A special part of working with the magazine has been watching the publication grow from three editions with a circulation of 50,000 in three counties to today’s five editions with a circulation of over 250,000 in ten Florida counties. Lately we have worked to gain a following for our online publication, and that has a special appeal of its own to see the number of “hits” each month.

Fascinating, this work called writing!

Janice Doyle

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