I did not plan on becoming a TV executive. My original plan was to be a doctor.
The summer before my freshman year in college, I did an unpaid internship in a cardiology lab. I worked on cutting-edge research for a world renowned cardiologist. I loved it and I thought that that experience was going to be like the next four years of being a pre-med student.
I was wrong.
I spent two years at UC San Diego, but being pre-med (a Biology major) had absolutely nothing to do with my love of anatomy, nutrition and dealing with people. It had everything to do with Biology, Microbiology, Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Physics and Calculus.
At the beginning of my sophomore year, I fell in love with another pre-med student from UCSD. We were planning to get married and be doctors together.
Until my pre-med boyfriend started sleeping with one of the freshman girls. (She was an aerobics instructor. How is that for an 80s cliche?) I was now living with my ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend in the tiny fishbowl of college dorm life. I was in hell.
Depressed and heartbroken, I came back to home (to Los Angeles) and transferred to UCLA in my junior year. I was still holding onto my dream of going to medical school, but after a crucial error in my Organic Chemistry lab, I came close to failing the class. I took it as a sign. It was time to change my major and give up my dream of being a doctor. I switched my major from Biology to Psychology (mostly because I had already completed all the pre-reqs) and could still graduate on time as planned.
Only I didn't have a plan after graduation.
I ended up answering an ad on the UCLA job board for a secretarial job working for a film producer. I thought I finally had a path, but I only lasted six weeks before I quit. (He was a truly awful human being.) I was certain that it would be my last job in Hollywood, but I managed to get one more after that... and a few more after that too.
Sheer perseverance, fear, luck and necessity somehow turned into a successful career as a television executive.
Now I am starting over again. I am about a month into being a producer. So far so good, but let's not jinx it.