Roy Taylor: Chicago Bears History
Roy’s dream was to write a book on the Bears, but as he said, “it would be crazy to quit my full-time corporate job to pursue my dream of writing a book.” As Roy stated, “it’s a job that pays the bills, not pursuing your dreams”. So, he did what most of us would do - - he continued to work at his stable job.
Along the way, Roy became somewhat discontented with his career and decided he would like to enhance his technology skills. As Roy points out, “the tech craze was in high gear and I wanted to become part of it.” Roy carefully researched courses and decided that the best program for his needs was the “Internet Technologies and Webmaster” certificate offered at Illinois Institute of Technology’s Rice Campus in Wheaton. “The part-time evening program was perfect for me, I was able to keep my job and train for another one.”
As part of his class assignment, Roy needed to create a website. The obvious choice for Roy was a website that detailed the history of the Chicago Bears. Roy knew he could use his experience in writing, his love of the Bears and his newfound interest in technology to design a solid website. He admits, “I actually got excited about the class project.”
In researching the project, Roy found that there were many Bears fan sites, but nothing that really detailed the history of the Bears - including the team’s official site. “It presented an interesting opportunity, in that nobody had collected and pieced together the history of one of the founding teams of the National Football League.” And, since Roy wanted to get a good grade on his project, he started doing his research and putting together the historical pieces.
Eventually, it became more than a class project – it became a personal challenge. Roy did earn an “A” on his project, but he did not stop there. Once the class was over, Roy registered the domain name bearshistory.com and went about creating a Bears history website that could be accessed by Bears fans everywhere. He loved what he was doing. Roy realized his website was not exactly the dream of writing a book, but it was pretty close.
Eventually, Roy’s newly acquired technology skills helped him get a new job at Thompson Financial as a Technical Account Manager. His position allowed him to utilize his newly developed technology skills. Roy states, “I was pretty excited; I had a job in technology, and I was using my writing skills to create a website – how could it get any better?”
Amazingly, it could! As part of his “Internet Technologies and Webmaster” class at Illinois Institute of Technology, Roy learned about web search engines and how they work. He also learned a few tricks to make his website become higher on the “hit list” of search engines.
It all came together when the sports editor from Arcadia Publishing searched the web and came across Roy’s website. They were impressed with Roy’s work and asked if he would be willing to write a book. Roy could not believe the phone call. People do not usually call you to see if you want to write a book. Instead, the book is usually written and then you contact publishers to see if you can make a deal to write a book. The process is usually long and frustrating because most of the publishers do not want to take a chance on someone not previously published. Roy credits the power of the Internet -and IIT - for bringing him together with the book company.
Roy recognized the book offer as a great opportunity, so great that he decided he would take a semester off from pursuing his master’s in Information Technology and Management at Illinois Institute of Technology so that he could concentrate on writing. Roy would spend his days working for Thompson Financial and nights working on the book.
The book did get written, published and is appropriately titled “Chicago Bears History”. Roy avers, “It was an exciting project and a dream come true”. Now that the book is done, Roy has resumed his studies.
When asked, “What is your next dream”? He stated, “The final dream would be to become a Bears beat reporter, as far-reaching as that goal is”. Look out, for if history is any indication, Roy may be on the sidelines soon!