Changing Careers at 31
written on Friday, June 17, 2011
I won't bury the lead: About a month ago, I got my first job as a programmer after years of working in PR and marketing.
As I noted here, I spent this spring a "stay-at-home dad," and spent practically every waking moment becoming a better programmer, with the intent of joining the ranks of professional hackers and getting an awesome job making awesome things. Well, a few days after my last blog post, an acquaintance I'd through a local Python meetup tweeted a job opening. I responded, interviewed, and amazingly enough, got the job.
I should point out that I live in Indiana. Development jobs using Python are extremely rare, and one using Django is rarer still. In fact, as far as I know, I may very well have snagged the only job in Indiana that offered the opportunity to work with both Python and Django.
I consider myself very fortunate. It is a great place to work, with smart people, and every day I do interesting things. Every day I learn something new. Working with geeks is very different than working with marketers. My boss's bookshelf is filled with books like, *Leading Geeks*. When I talk about something I read on HN, there's a conversation, not a bunch of blank stares.
Though I get up at 5:30am to get Emma off to day camp and drop my girlfriend off downtown for her classes at IUPUI, I practically bounce out of bed. I love going to work. I'm a little disappointed when I have to go home for the night. Putting in those long hours reading and hacking have paid off. Best decision ever.
If you're curious, at work I'm working on deployment automation. It's not super sexy objectively speaking, but I feel like I've achieved a moderate level of expertise with Fabric. Plus, it has been a great way to learn the ins and outs of the various systems we use at work. Eventually I hope to roll it up into the Django admin panel and make provisioning and deployment as easy as clicking a few radio buttons.