"Bookselling made a writer out of me. Before I got a job at a bookstore, I would sometimes poke around the edges of being a creative writer--I wrote little essays for zines my friends published, and I liked to come up with elaborate fake histories for bands I was associated with in college.
I liked books and I liked to read. But being a bookseller moved me from a casual to a professional interest in books, so it meant I needed to read a lot more, and a lot of contemporary work. It gave me a sense of the landscape, and where I might fit into it. (And that I actually might fit into it.) It plugged me into the community of writers and readers. And it gave me access to writers who helped me evolve my writing."
via Shelf Awareness