This month’s installment of Gal Gab features a familiar face – our managing editor, Michelle Cerino. She is a woman who wears many hats: mom, yogi, columnist, freelance writer, editor, firearms trainer, social media editor, and events staff, to name a “few.”
Those who know Michelle know that her shooting alter ego is “Princess Gunslinger.” Michelle also has a special fondness for the movie The Wizard of Oz. She’s greeted this new year with a new lease on life, where she is focusing on self care, and is committed to giving out good vibes, only!
“You’ve always had the power, my dear, you just had to learn it for yourself.” – Glinda, the Good Witch of the North
Keep reading to find out more about the lady who keeps The WON running like a well-oiled machine. Princess Gunslinger has more than a decade in this industry, and has gleaned a lot of wisdom in her journey.
1. Describe a typical day in your work life:
I wish I had an answer that made me sound like a super organized person. However, my days and weeks are anything but typical since I have my own business and work from home. The first thing I do, yes, sometimes this takes place on my phone as I’m still lying in bed, is read my emails and check The WON to make sure that day’s post went live. My sons leave for work between 6:15 and 6:45 a.m. I like to see them before they step out the door to say, “Have a great day.” It’s important to have that connection with the ones you love to begin your day.
Then, anything can happen, but it usually revolves around my yoga schedule. I try to practice at least 5 times a week. It does wonders for my mind, body and soul. Self care is so important, yet often it gets put into an “if I have time” category. Over the past year-and-a-half, I made the conscious decision to put it first.
Back to my work … on Sunday, I create a list of items I need to get done for that week. This list usually involves touching base with our writers at The WON and making sure content is ready for the month, laying out the posts and scheduling them for the week, creating social media content for Vera Koo and GTM Original, and working on any of my articles. I also write a monthly column for NRA Shooting Sports USA and a few other print magazines. Finally, I try to set aside time to work on my Princess Gunslinger website, social media and other projects.
My boys and I eat dinner together every night. So all work stops during that time. However, after the kitchen is clean, I often pull my computer back out while we watch TV together. I’m very good at multitasking!
Of course, this all changes when I travel with CZ-USA as event staff or get to attend writer events.
2. #1 piece of advice you would give other females who want to break into the industry?
Stay true to yourself. What I mean by that is, uphold your standards, don’t do something you don’t believe 100% in. It’s important to begin with integrity and uphold it throughout your journey.
3. What motivates you?
I am motivated by the possibility of doing something that may make a difference in someone’s life. Whether it’s teaching a person how to successfully place shots on a target exactly where intended or inspiring someone to try something new. There are so many negatives thrown at us throughout life, I want to send out positive, life changing vibes.
4. Most unexpected thing you’ve learned, while working in this industry?
When I started in the industry in 2011 I was told things like, “Women are the key to this industry,” and “We really want to support women.” In the beginning, I really believed that. Honestly, though, I still don’t see this happening. I know I sound negative, but I think most companies are just blowing smoke when they say that, except (of course) for the companies that work with The WON. This just tells me there is still more work to be done, getting companies to realize how important women are in the shooting and outdoors industries.
5. Favorite product in the outdoor or shooting market right now?
My favorite product is my custom CZ-USA shotgun. I didn’t want to believe that a custom shotgun could make a difference. I thought I should have the ability to pick up any shotgun and hit clay birds. Well, that wasn’t the case. However, once I had a gun fit just for me (and was shaped like a hockey stick), I started seeing what I needed to see and thus crush clays.
6. Let’s have some fun … what weapon would you use to battle a giant?
Did you ever think that maybe a giant is crabby and mean because he isn’t loved? Maybe he just needs a hug, a kiss on the forehead and someone to make him laugh. So, I guess my weapon would be my personality and ability to make someone feel welcome.
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