~ Florida Women Magazine ~
Celebrating our One Year Anniversary!
“I love to see a young girl go out and grab the
world by the lapels.” — Maya Angelou
Florida Women Magazine (FWM) is a publication of BH Media,
Inc, which was founded by Jet Hall. FWM is celebrating our
one year anniversary
this month and we thought what better way
to celebrate than to interview in
our founder. Jen Wead became Jet’s
business partner in January J
of this year. The two have a great
friendship f i d hi and d Jen J had h
been wanting to tell Jet’s story for a long
time. Jet said no. They argued about this for a while and one day,
many months ago, Jet agreed to let Jen interview her for the anniversary
issue. It should be noted that the two got together at Jet’s
home to chat, and they shared wine and snacks in their pajamas,
just like two girlfriends. The result of that afternoon is presented to
you now. This is how we began and the
woman that got it all started.
drinking wine in the middle of the day
instead of coffee.
Jet: It’s true.
Jen: I like it. We should work it into
our regular boardroom…
Jet interrupts: It should be a once an
afternoon hay day…
Jen interrupts: Oh, every day?
Founder of FWM
Jet: Like you know how some have tea in the afternoon.
Jen: Well, every day that isn’t on deadline week.
The two quickly sober remembering deadline for a moment.
Then, both break into giggles again.
Jet: Ok. (Begrudgingly) Let’s hear your damn questions.
Jen clears her throat and tries to lower her voice and sound like
Jen: I want to thank you for seeing me today.
they need to get it together.
Jet: Alright, alright. (clears throat) I promise not to lie and do
the best I can.
Jen: Well, if you’re going to lie, at least make it creative, make
Jen: First, I would like to talk a little bit about your history in
the industry. Sometimes, when we are talking, you refer back to a
women’s magazine that you used to work for back in the day and
your typesetting business. Take me back to the beginning of your
Jet: I’ll tell you how I got started in the industry. When I was
in high school I worked for a retail store. One of my jobs in the
local newspaper. Their rep, an older man named Art Wierz, I’ll
never forget him, always dressed like Columbo, with the hat and
trench coat, carrying a brief case, taught me how to write ad copy
and how to properly mark-up text for the copy department at the
paper. Headline, body text, price, etc. The standard who, what,
where, why info.
Jen: And, how old were you again?
Jet: 17. That was it, I got the bug! I really loved that end of the
job. A few years went by, the store closed and I ended up getting
a job working for a typesetter because of my experience. Typesetting
came after the hot metal type. I didn’t know anything about
giggle), no lie, (giggles) but now I can type 90 words per minute.
So, anyway, they hired me and taught me the typesetting business.
I learned about layout, design, how to “spec” type. We worked on
magazines, brochures, book design for publishers. We provided
type for the local printers. It wasn’t just the type, it was getting
everything in position, ready to go to press. “Camera Ready” we
called it. In those days, type was in “galley” form, in other words,
long sheets of text. The typesetting machines photographed the
individual letters onto a photographic paper, which we would
have to run thru chemical baths to process. The exposure had to
be just right. Black, not blurry, high dpi. Then those galley sheets
were put thru a waxer, cut and pasted into mechanicals. Layouts
were done by hand. Everything was in black and white. It was the
printer that added the color. Camera ready now is a complete, full
color image, as oppose to camera ready being black and white for
the printer. It’s a fascinating history from hot metal type to what
is current today. Now everything is so automated. The art is gone.
Jen: Was it a national company or...
Jet: No, no, it was in the local town I grew up in, Stamford, CT.
Yeah, it’s so different now. Computers were larger than refrigerators
then. Then the owner of the company retired and closed it
down. All of the customers were asking me, “where are ya going?”
I said, “well, I don’t know,” and they said, “well, why don’t you
start your own?”
Jen: So, now by this time you were how old?
Jet: It was the early 80s.
Jen: So you were married?
Jet: Yes, I was married, and I had Melanie Jet’s oldest daughter
by then, and, I said (in a high pitched voice) “Okay!” So, I talk-
ditioned” equipment. I put it in my dining room. I bought myself
a used chemical bath processor and opened my doors. First day in
business I did $500 and just kept going. During that time no one
had a full time business in my house. It was really cool. Well, as
we grew we had two or three typesetters, my sister came to work
for me and did my books, my mother worked for us answering the
telephone and making coffee for the customers.
Jen: Love it. Wait, you would see customers in your home?
Jet: Yeah, they would bring their jobs to me or I would go and
pick them up. It was mixed. And, my father did some of my deliveries.
(she giggles) Now, my mother and my father were divorced.
They didn’t talk each other. (both are giggling now) But, my older
sister Laura calls my dad and says, ‘you know, your daughter
needs some help,’ so my father came through. We were busy. We
did work for all the local printers. We did work for IBM, Exxon,
Mobil, Texasgulf, even government work. My husband, Mike at
the time, helped me with display pieces. He would build big 6’ x
10’ wall displays (gestures wide with both arms and then tall) for
IBM on which we mounted photographic collages for promotional
6 • MAY/JUNE 2019 813.682.9364