When I was in college, I had no extra money. None.
I remember, my sister and I were headed home and pulled our change together to splurge on 2 McDonald’s cheeseburgers.
We were happy about our treat until we saw the highway sign letting us know that we would have to pay a toll in one mile.
The blood drained from our faces as we screamed, WE FORGOT ABOUT THE TOLL!!!!
Utterly panicked, we pulled that car over and started searching every nook and cranny until we pulled together the 70 cents that we needed. Is there anybody out there that can relate?
Financially-challenged or not, people that I cared about kept having birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, etc. so I had to get creative about celebrating without the extra expense.
I started making greeting cards with balloons and a corny poem to fit the occasion. Somehow, they became something that my friends looked forward to getting. Go figure.
When I heard about Ashley Rice’s story, I was instantly impressed. She took her interest in greeting cards to an incredible level. What started out as a simple Christmas card made on a printer and hand delivered, turned into a career of cards, books and unstoppable inspiration.
Obviously, she enjoys writing and has carved out a profitable niche in the greeting card industry.
I’d like to introduce you to Ashley Rice, greeting card expert.
Learn more from Ashley Rice
What hobby are you good at?
Writing greeting cards (this is my job as well)
How long have you been doing it?
Professionally: twenty years.
But I made my first greeting card in high school the year the color copier was invented.
I drew a cartoon Christmas tree in bright colors, wrote some catchy (or what I thought were catchy, anyway) words to go along with it… took it to the equivalent of a Kinko’s to make copies for my friends and then had my mom drive me over to their houses to deliver my Christmas card to them.
How did you get good at it?
I got an internship at a greeting card company when I was in college.
My job was officially to find other people’s words to put on cards, but I ended up finding it much easier to write and illustrate my own… so I did both (turned in quotes I had looked up, and also submitted my handmade designs).
The company liked the cards I wrote and published my line the following year.
I’ve been writing cards for nearly twenty years now (I’m 42) so I’ve had a lot of practice.
What advice would you give to beginners? What shortcuts or secrets can you share?
Go out in the field (to stationery stores and other places that sell greeting cards) read through the racks and take notice both of what speaks to you and what you find to be lacking in the market.
In other words, look for a need your cards or words could fill which isn’t currently being served by what is already out there.
Then just listen to your heart.
A lot of your best ideas will just sort of come to you.
But it does help to keep your eyes open.
Are you a member of any local or national organization/club related to your hobby? If yes, please share the name and benefits of belonging.
I’m a member of a couple of greeting card organizations on LinkedIn.com.
If you happen to make money from your interest, do you have a website, Etsy store, Facebook page, etc. that you have created and would like to share?
I have a website at www.ashleyrice.net.
You can find my Amazon author page (because I also write inspirational or helpful books) here.
Any other information that you would like to share?
Don’t give up!
Whatever you are doing.
Whether it’s writing greeting cards or trying to write songs or books or anything else, if you trust your voice (and are true to yourself) you will eventually find a market for whatever you do.
Connect with Ashley
Visit Ashley’s website (click here to go) and prepare to be amazed at her talent. I was instantly inspired by her words. Really moving.
Meet her, connect with her, support her. 🙂
Be Like Ashley
Just as Ashley has turned her love of writing and connecting to young girls and women and turned this gift into a profitable business, so can you.
There is absolutely nothing that can stop you from pursuing your passion – except you.
If you are interested in pursing writing as a hobby or even as a way to profit, check out our Writing hobby page and get started learning.
What did you like most about Ashley’s story? Let us know in the comments below.
If you would like to share your hobby, go to Get Interviewed (it’s a form with the questions that I asked above) then complete and submit. I am always on the lookout for experts to share their story. Are YOU next?