CAREERS: My Big Break

I spent the first 10 years of my career trying to be a screen writer. My high water mark was becoming a writer on the Love Connection TV show where my job was to badger contestants into behaving badly.

The summer of 1993, Love Connection went off the air, I got divorced and after about six months of unemployment and dating all the leftover women I met, I strongly considered moving back in with my parents, enrolling in the local city college and studying to become a marriage and family counselor.

A week before I was set to move, I saw an ad on the UCLA job board for a media relations manager posted by the National Hot Rod Association.

I sent a cover letter pumping up my writing experience, went to the library to learn how the internal combustion engine worked and in a couple of days, got an interview.

Luckily, the director of communications, Denny Darnell, who was from Tennessee and called me 'boss' throughout the interview, was looking for a sharp newbie who he could mold in his own image. He didn't want to have to break some hot shot's bad PR habits and since I had virtually no PR experience, I was his man.

I spent the next two-and-a-half years traveling around the country, shmoozing the media into covering drag races, eating at Hooters and wearing ear plugs. The rest is history, Boss.

Scott Matulis is an account supervisor with Manning Selvage & Lee Global Technology.

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