Initiative recently served up an exciting opportunity for 16-year-old Jaimee Rindy.
Two years ago, the Eagle Valley High School junior started writing a blog about her biggest passion – volleyball. The blog is called “Play Your Heart Out!” Not many people noticed it at first, but she kept writing.
“It was not popular at the time but I stuck with it and in the end it felt like it would go somewhere,” she said. “I’ve always loved writing and I still had ideas I wanted to write.”
Meanwhile, USA Volleyball, the national governing body for the sport, was searching for a new columnist for its VolleyballUSA Magazine. The publication comes out four times a year and includes material for all ages. It has some sections specifically geared to readers between 12 and 18 years old.
“We were looking for a new junior columnist and an editor emailed me a link to Rindy’s blog,” said Don Patterson, publisher of VolleyballUSA. “She obviously had enthusiasm for the sport and was taking on interesting subjects and analyzing them on a deeper level. We looked at about a dozen writers and Rindy stood out.”
Rindy’s first column was published in the 2013 fall edition and is available on line at www.teamusa.org/USA-Volleyball/Mag. The inaugural column is titled, “You’re competing against yourself.”
“The idea for the first one came from a blog she wrote and she explored the topic a little deeper for the magazine,” Patterson said. “She shows a lot of initiative. She talks to coaches and does some research.”
Rindy said that’s quality control.
“The blog is pretty much just my opinion but for the column I want the expert opinion,” she said.
Rindy started playing volleyball in seventh grade, which is also when she got her first subscription to VolleyballUSA Magazine, but she almost quit.
“It was the year before Eagle Valley High School went to state,” Rindy said. “My mom used to play varsity volleyball and she took me to a game so I could see what the game is supposed to look like.”
That’s when she realized what she wanted to do, and one passion led to another.
“I quote my coaches all the time,” she said. “One of them told me to keep up with the blog when he moved away.”
She has, and then some.
“I was impressed she had the initiative to write a blog,” Patterson said.