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Two-Month Update!!

Posted By Ester Venouziou, Friday, December 9, 2011
Updated: Friday, December 9, 2011
Someone asked me recently if I miss working at the St. Petersburg Times.
My stock response is, "I had some great times there, but it was time to move on."
• • •

The real answer, of course, is more complicated.

I miss the security of a steady paycheck, even though by the time I got laid off two months ago, that paycheck — thanks to pay cuts and pay freezes
was barely higher than what it was when I first got to the Times, in 2003.
I don't miss having to cut short a great LocalShops1 brainstorming session so I could get to "my other job" on time.

I miss collaborating with my creative co-workers and supervisors.
I don't miss seeing their ideas shot down or second-guessed the next day.

I miss the themed potlucks, most often organized by the features department, to celebrate birthdays.
I don't miss having dinner (as in, a bag of chips and a diet Coke) at my desk, when we were too busy to take a break.

I miss the adrenaline rush of deadline, having to redo everything to accommodate for breaking news.
I don't miss the adrenaline rush of deadline, having to redo everything to accommodate for someone second-guessing himself.

• • •

Tuesday was two months since I got laid off from the St. Petersburg Times.

It has been a whirlwind of activity since.

On the LocalShops1 front, I've been busy revamping this website, with much help from my brother, who recently moved down here from Syracuse. I've also been planning a gazillion events, from networking lunches to vendor expos to store promotions, to help grow Tampa Bay's Buy Local movement. And I've been meeting with incredible groups making a difference in St. Petersburg and the rest of Tampa Bay. (Some big announcements are coming soon; if all goes well, before the end of the year.)

On the freelance front, I'm working on a couple of longterm projects, one blogging, the other social media. My goal is to get three more clients in the next two months. (Leads welcomed!)

And on the personal front, I'm trying to lead a healthier, more balanced life, but I'm still long ways from achieving that. I did, however, cut way back on my diet Coke intake.

• • •

Do I miss working at the Times? I had some great times there, but it was definitely time to move on.

Are you starting over after a layoff? We want to hear your story! Please email us at, and include your story and contact info. We will try to include as many stories as possible in future blogs.

Ester Venouziou, founder of and co-founder of Gulfport! Magazine, is available for freelance projects: writing, editing, design or social media. She can be reached at or 727.637.5586.

Tags:  florida  life after layoff  localshops1  moving on after a layoff  st. pete times layoffs  tampa bay 

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