Like so many previous The Second Chapter guests, Liz Bieler followed the path she was told to follow, and for a long time, gave up a creative life she craved.
Since letting her creativity flow -- and boy did it flow! -- she's become a jazz singer, a voiceover actor, and now an author with Alice in Condoland now available, and more books coming soon.
For more on Liz, go to her website (after listening to the podcast, of course!) LizBieler.com
She's also on
Alice in Condoland is available on Amazon in several countries and Barnes & Noble.
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On The Second Chapter, serial careerist and founder of Slackline Productions, Kristin Duffy, chats with women who started the second (or third… or fifth!) chapter in their careers and lives, after 35. You’ll find inspiring stories, have a few laughs, and maybe even be motivated to turn the page on your own second chapter!
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CMO to Condoland, Liz Bieler
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In, in the.[: [: [: [: [: [: [:
Very neutral.[: [: [: [: [: [:
How did you get there and how did those things go together?[:
I was really just following a path that wasn't set by me. I was always a singer. And I did Broadway shows in high school and after high school, and I loved that. When I was 17, my mother took me to Backstage. It was a tour for Broadway and they told us that Ho Girls at the time made about, I think it was $355 a.
which I thought was a lot of money, but she didn't think that, and , she was just trying to show me how unrealistic it was.[: [:
But I went on a path and that ended up because I majored economics in financial services marketing. And uh, I liked it. I'm, I wanted to master it. Whatever I do, I wanna do it well. And I went along numbly for a long time thinking it was great and maybe it was great. I There were things I enjoyed.
I had great teams. I got to travel. I worked for some great companies. And then I had a painful breakup and, it was a long-term relationship. And I remember thinking, okay, I'm in my forties now. What? This is not how I planned. And one day somebody on my team came up to me and said, he's a friend.
And he said, I know you're not happy. I know you wanna stay here and look out for us, but we're gonna be fine and you need to be happy. And so I started thinking, what does happiness look like? And at the time it was voice acting and singing, which sounds crazy if you've been a corporate person for 20 odd.I told people they fell into [:
And so you get up on the stage and you perform with them a song or two. And I remember a man I didn't know asking me what I did. And I believe you have to assume the role to earn the role. And so I said, I'm a singer and a voice. But how do you make money?[: [: [: [:
So I did, I had some family members, some friends, very supportive and some not, some discouraging me, some thinking I was wasting my time. My best friend in the beginning was quite negative, and then later she said she was wrong[: [: [: [: [: [: [: [:
He was a little bitter about it. And I and I thought, wow. So I've seen him on stage. He followed it. And maybe by doing it later, I learned lessons. And avoided some mistakes that I wouldn't have otherwise. Does that make sense?[:
But I think with what you're doing, you have a little bit well, I don't wanna speak for you, but I do think[: [: [: [: [:
I had a greater sense of self and I knew my worth, whether in a field where I had no experience and I was starting at the bottom or otherwise, I just knew who I was because I had life experience and I think.
think that's an advantage.
Doesn't mean it's not, you're definitely too old to do a lot of things.the pandemic started, I did [:
I think you take the path that you're meant to take and if you can ignore all the noise around you, you'd be happi.[:
singing. And you mentioned the pandemic, but for the past, what is that[:
And I think I needed that. I needed to take that. And it's risky and you never know when the next gig is,
but when you get one boy, it's exciting,[: [:
starting a novel.[:
you know what, I'm gonna write a little, how about a.[:
One of the women in the group is a sensational experience, novelist for years. And so I have benefited from her teaching. And anyway, we still have the group and we meet regular. Every few weeks now, I'd say, but in the beginning we were meeting every week, so that gave me the discipline to write something because I had to hand it in, so to speak.
And and I'd write it and think it was great. And then I'd learn, no, it wasn't so great, but I'd learn why. And so little by little I finished the book and then once I was finished writing, I had to rewrite it and I had to rewrite it again, and then I'd get feedback from agents and I'd think, oh boy, I didn't do this, or I didn't do that.
So by the time I was finished writing it, I really didn't wanna look at it for a while, I got it to where it needed to go.[:
the only one[: [:
So that's what I did. And she did a lot of things I didn't know you were supposed to do. Formatting and keywords and metadata and anyway she helped me get an illustrator. And they did a cover. The woman did a cover and I think it came
well. I'm happy with it.[:
some reviews from your book to you,[: [:
the book to end absolutely insightful and witty and I really liked this. Um, which is gonna lead me to a question perfect for readers.
Looking for a beach read with memorable characters, but real world. Real world problems, I can speak. and that was from Book Life Reviews. And I know you said that it is a bit of a beach read, but that was not your intention and that's not really how the book
turns out.[: n and cheating and lying and [:
So this was my attempt to show people don't have to take it, but they can't do
What is gonna happen here, ? So immediately from the start, I feel like you get that there's, the people that are the good people, the kind of maybe not so good people, the really over the top people. And that, it is gonna read with a lot of fun, but there's gonna be something bigger that happens.[:
ever remember who was who[: [:
cuz there are a lot of people in the story.[: [: [: [:
experience when she came into it.[:
When I first started reading it, I was like, oh, she's starting afresh in like her forties or something, and then I was like, oh wait, she's young.
And that makes sense. As I started reading it, I was like, oh, okay. But for whatever reason I was maybe because I was talking to you for the podcast, so I had this, this vision of, women changing their lives after. 35 or 40.
And that's kind of the, part of humor in the book is that the place that she moves is mostly Florida snowbirds. People who've gone there after retirement or you know, are much, much older[:
there were people who would say to me, who were you visiting? you know, people have a lot of ideas about what others are supposed to do and how you're supposed to live your life. there's a scene in the book where she gets interrogated on the elevator that would happen to.
grandparents live here? No. Do your parents live here? No. I live here. But is it your parents' apartment? Can you imagine asking people these questions? But they would ask that and uh, it's a music. I'm gonna look back and it's funny, but I think it's more about if women decide to do what their society tells them to do.
They're not going to be authentic. I can't, this
is not who I am.[:
I mean, could have a big house not far from the beach.
And so that was something I definitely related to in this story cuz I just thought, you know what would've happened if I would've flown for pastures? I was gonna say greener, but maybe bluer with[:
you get a disposal I used to call my friends and run it and say, do you know what this is?
Because they were
jealous.[: [: [: [:
of the next book
just so creative.[: [:
about it, I panic and I can't think of anything. But when I relax and I just let it go ideas do come to me. It's when I'm, maybe I'm in the shower or maybe I'm just watching TV and laughing, and then I think, oh, I know a good story. So, and I put the ideas down and then, other people because they're all gonna have an opinion.[: [:
until it was published.[: [:
time you're like, published, people can't say that much. You're like, well, there's a book, but guess what, here it is.[:
I don't know if that's the only thing in life, but yeah.[:
So what do you say to people that might be thinking about a change?[:
Yourself and what's gonna make you happy. And if you want financial security, first of all, I took a move into the arts, so that is probably the highest risk. but if you wanna make a change, plan it out and ask yourself what you value most, save some money or find a way to work part-time.
Although I will say to the extent that you keep your foot in the old world, it's very hard to land in the new. and I did do that for quite a while. I was consulting I also think you've gotta get support. You can't do it by yourself. So find your new community, find other people doing what you wanna do, learn from them.
if you can, I mean, if you're going to be, let's say you wanna change from a doctor to a lawyer, you go to law school, it's a little more clear cut. But if you wanna do something creative, find like-minded people. Get your community. You help them. They help you learn from each other.
And once you know that you can swing it financially, you
gotta take the plunge.[: [: [:
I don't know. I'm a triathlon coach, so I think there's an accountability to fitness things. Like for me, if I know I'm gonna go meet someone, I'll go for that run. I'll go for that swim. I have a club that, you I coach because I know people come to that club because they expect to see friends. They expect to get challenged by people, and I think it's the same with that change.
So it's really interesting to hear you say that because the minute you said the writing group, I was like, Absolutely. That's why I was writing all the time because there were people that I, that I liked meeting. There were people that I liked to hear their work and sharing. It was a great learning experience.[:
I don't know if you've applied for any of these type of things. I don't know if that's a situation you find, but do you. That there is a community of other emerging writers that are, maybe similar to you or in this group.
Is it just a hugely different kind of group?[:
I, I misspoke. There were a lot of online groups I've joined. when I wanted to write a children's book, I took an online class in writing for children. And that professor is the one who's now reviewing my book. So you find the resources, there are writer's, groups on Facebook, and they tend to be very supportive of each other.
There's a lot of them, so you, you can find it. The online world
is very helpful in that regard.[: [:
good when you can get it.[: [:
It's an African proverb.[: [:
the deeper meaning that you just described.[: [:
is. Maybe we didn't realize it before, but with 24 hour news
you see a lot.[:
know that the. Is showing kind of what someone could do if they take the initiative. one person, once they rile a community around them can do a lot, whether it's professionally, whether it's making a change in the world. So, like you said, depending on which way you wanna look at it, the book will maybe lead you to stand up for yourself a bit.[:
it, that makes me happy.[: [:
if they have a dream, I guess be bold. that's what I would say. But it takes a lot of work. Takes a lot of work and determination. My dad was 50 when he started his business. And I was a little kid, and uh, he did not make a take a take home salary for six years. He just worked night and day pouring it into that business and he made it work.
And I asked him later in life, what made you think that you weren't going to fail? Like so many businesses
find a way.[: [: [:
you so much for sharing a bit about your story today and the book is Alice in Condo Land and it sounds like quite a few more to come. So we look forward to seeing what's next.
Thank you, so much,[: [: