Miserable Boss Inspires Great Writing!

My worst job was as a travel agent in Miami, FL. I was so bad, I’d hide behind my computer screen to keep from waiting on customers. Reflecting on my latest mystery, Margaritas, Mayhem & Murder and main character, Andi Anna Jones as my alter ego and equally pathetic travel agent, I asked some of my fellow authors to think back on their worst job, ever. Here’s Bonnie McCune’s perspective.

My worst job won because of the boss. For years I’d happily worked away, learning, enjoying my coworkers and the tasks, with few negatives. Then with no warning, I got a new boss. If there ever was a person who embodied the term “emotionally abusive,” it was this winner.

Author, Bonnie McCune

*Took all the credit if others commented on a success project. 

*Blamed employees when something got messed up.

*Tried to get employees to rat on one another. 

*Went through desks and trash to find things to blackmail us with.

*Insisted on sign-in’s and out’s for the smallest break.

*Did no work independently.

*Bad-mouthed everyone.

In other words, this awful boss became my “crucible event,” a major, negative incident in life that enables you to learn from it and, in the end, value it for what it taught you. Harvard Business Review says, “One of the most reliable indicators and predictors of true leadership is an individual’s ability to find meaning in negative events and to learn from even the most trying circumstances. Put another way, the skills required to conquer adversity and emerge stronger and more committed than ever are the same ones that make for extraordinary leaders.” So in the end, my worst job enabled me to grow and learn, so I valued it.


Bonnie McCune has been writing since age ten, when she submitted a poem about rain rushing down the gutter to the Saturday Evening Post (it was immediately rejected). This interest facilitated her career in nonprofits doing public and community relations and marketing. She’s worked for libraries, directed a small arts organization, and managed Denver’s beautification program.

Simultaneously, she’s been a freelance writer with publications in local, regional, and specialty publications for news and features. Her civic involvement includes grass-roots organizations, political campaigns, writers’ and arts’ groups, and children’s literacy. For years, she entered recipe contests and was a finalist once to the Pillsbury Bake Off. A special love is live theater. Had she been nine inches taller and thirty pounds lighter, she might have been an actress.

Her true passion is fiction, and her pieces have won several awards. Never Retreat is her third novel and her fifth book of fiction. For reasons unknown (an unacknowledged optimism?), she believes one person can make a difference in this world. 







A feisty single mom clashes with an ex-military, macho corporate star at a business retreat in the wild Colorado mountains, where only one can win a huge prize. But when a massive flood imperils their love and survival, they learn the meaning of true partnership. 

 Years ago, Ramona (‘Raye”) Soto faced harsh reality when a roving con man knocked her up. Now at thirty-something she’s concentrating on her career in a major telecommunications firm and funding college for her teenaged son. Enter Desmond Emmett—a fast talker and smooth operator. New to the office, the ex-serviceman possesses every negative quality for a guy Raye should avoid.

 Thrown together at a corporate retreat in the wilderness, the reluctant duo struggles to complete management’s extreme mental and physical tests for a huge reward. But only one can win the prize, and Des needs the money to underwrite medical treatments for his adored younger sister.
See-sawing between attraction and antagonism, the mismatched couple, Raye and Des, face their biggest challenge: learning the meaning of true partnership. When a massive flash flood sweeps down the rocky canyon and threatens their love and survival, they must put aside their difference to rescue their colleagues—and their future as a couple.

Amazon link: Buy the EBook on Kindle for $1.99! 

One thought on “Miserable Boss Inspires Great Writing!

  1. Alison Bruce

    The trials of today are the stories of tomorrow. Or, as I always tell myself when things go wrong, “It’s all grist for the mill.”

    Sounds like you have some gritty grist for your mill.


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