I’ve already posted about my chess teaching, and my grocery store work (here and here), my next job was as managing editor of the Austrian Economics Newsletter, for 1980-1981. I was only eighteen (and nineteen) then, so for me this was a big step up.
I was responsible for commissioning content, making sure authors got their pieces in on time, editing those pieces (along with the editor proper, Don Lavoie), proofreading, picking up all the copy and delivering it to the typesetter, and coming up with ideas for future features. I wrote a few short pieces too, conference coverage if I recall. Part of my job was managing Don as well, though overall he was extremely generous with his time and also easy to work with. Note that all of this work was de facto pre-computer.
From this job I learned a few things:
1. Most of all, I was grateful to Don for taking a huge chance on me. A while earlier, I had driven to a party at his house in Brooklyn and spent a few hours with him. One core lesson here is show up! If I had not gone to Don’s party, almost certainly none of this would have happened. At the time, the drive from New Jersey to Brooklyn seemed a little daunting to me, but my Auseinandersetzung with the BQE went fine.
2. I began to suspect all the more that “keeping track of things getting done” requires an innate predisposition, though a bad upbringing can squeeze it out of you. But a