Five for Friday: Beth Gaskill of Big City Readers
Five questions with Beth Gaskill of Big City Readers, a children's education company that promotes learning and literacy for infants to elementary-age children. She and her team focus on keeping kids and their parents engaged, entertained, and active, all while making connections and keeping reading fun.
1. Where do you find inspiration?
BG: Wow. I guess I would say my sisters. I think I've never outgrown wanting to do everything just like my big sisters! I don't buy a single thing for my home, closet, or storefront without consulting them.
2. How would you describe your style?
BG: Bohemian/1960s California/mom on the go that doesn't have kids but is always with kids and needs to be able to sit on the floor 12 hours a day
3. What is some professional advice that helped you navigate your career?
BG: Listen to YOU. My business is built on dreams I had since I was in 2nd grade. You are equipped to do the thing you were made to do. I was so scared I didn't get an MBA but it turns out if you are you, you can't really fail. But if you try to copy someone else, you will definitely fail because you're not them.
4. What advice would you give to someone trying to get into your profession?
BG: Run. HA! No, just kidding. It's not an easy life and it takes up most of my time, so if you're looking for a "job," this ain't it. I almost never stop moving/working. If you're looking to devote 80% of your life, time, resources, and soul for something you wholeheartedly believe in-- dive in NOW. Quit thinking about it. You'll find a million reasons to say no, but if you know that it's going to be hard but you can't imagine NOT doing it, then do it now. The rest will figure itself out.
5. FAVORITE THING TO DO IN CHICAGO (RESTAURANT, ACTIVITY)?
BG: EVERYTHING. I couldn't pick just one. I love new places and classics and dive bars. I actually don't really love sight seeing though.
Many thanks to Beth for finding the time to connect! Interested in learning more about Big City Readers, or catching Beth at a local Chicago event? They run weekly early literacy classes and offer free story times at different stores around Chicago; learn more @bigcityreaders on Instagram.
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