Texas writer and drummer keeps reaching for the stars


Angela Smith

Another unique, unbelievable member of NFPW is a bundle of energy named Angela Smith. She is a talented musician, excellent writer and a fun addition to every meeting she attends. Once you meet Angela, you won’t forget this fun-loving member from Texas.

Name: Angela Smith

City and State: Austin, TX

Affiliate and leadership positions : Press Women of Texas, current President-Elect and past President; Co-Chair, 2009 NFPW Conference in San Antonio

NFPW member: Since 1978

Tell us a little about you:

I’m a rebel – always have been since I was expelled from Catechism at age 6. I’m a native Texan who went the University of Texas where I studied journalism and music.  I was the first female to be editor of the daily newspaper there but had to fight the Dean of Women to get a curfew waiver to hold that job.  I went to work for the Associated Press as a reporter in the Capitol Press Corps after receiving my BA and then followed that up with a long-time career in educational PR.  From there I went on to become Executive Director of the Writers’ League of Texas and am now proud to hold the title of Executive Director Emeritus of that organization.  Emeritus is definitely the more cushy job.

I spend most of my time these days as a freelance writer/editor; authoring books about steel drum history and badass lady drummers; playing lots of music on the steel drum, cello and piano; and gazing at the stars through telescopes I keep in New Mexico and Austin.  Did I mention my other passion along with writing and music is amateur astronomy?  I also love to travel, do things I’ve never done before, and get in the middle of a good political fight, especially when it comes to women’s rights.

Career advice:

Don’t let anyone discourage you from pursuing what you feel is your calling.  Be willing to take risks and be willing to fail.  Look on life as one big learning experience.  Most of all, be open to all options.

Talent I’d like to have: 

I’d love to be able to discern the secrets of the pyramids, Stonehenge, and all the other exotic, mysterious places on earth, not to mention what’s beyond this galaxy.

Where I would most like to live:

In a cozy, little cottage by the sea, with mountains close by and an airport to get me anywhere else I want to go as quickly as possible.

What are you currently reading:

I’m currently reading Women & Music by Karin Pendle in preparation for a presentation I’m making to my local affiliate of National Federation of Music Clubs.  For fun, I’ve just finished Stephen King’s Sleep.  I’m a sucker for horror novels – especially well written ones.

What would people be surprised to learn about you? 

I wanted to be an only child and tried to kill my little brother by telling him he could fly if he jumped out a second story window.  I didn’t succeed, but he did have to get a few stitches in his head.

NFPW has been important to me since the day I joined.  As a young reporter working in the Capitol Press Corps, women such as Helen Thomas and Sarah McClendon were my mentors.  I’ve belonged to numerous communications organizations through the years, but NFPW is the only one in which I continue to be active.  The friendships I’ve made and the extraordinary members who are part of this organization make the yearly investment in dues priceless. (I’m ready to volunteer for one of those MasterCard commercials.)

Way to follow you on a website, twitter, Facebook, etc.

I’m a Facebook and Twitter fool.  Follow me, please!

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One Comment on “Texas writer and drummer keeps reaching for the stars”

  1. I have just reviewed your new book on my website:
    I am on LinkedIn
    my email address is:

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