By: Joe Warta

Julie Golob is a professional shooter and member of the Smith & Wesson shooting team. She served in the U.S. Army on the Marksmanship Unit and worked in the firearms industry before being offered a spot on Smith & Wesson’s shooting team.
Golob is also the author of two gun-themed books.

I had the chance to catch up with Julie and learn a little bit more about her writing and her life as a competitive shooter:

GPM: You’ve written a book about gun safety for kids. What inspired you to write Toys, Tools, Guns & Rules?

Golob: The firearms and shooting sports industry have excellent resources in Eddie Eagle and Project Childsafe. I wrote Toys, Tools, Guns & Rules as a complimentary resource that dovetails with the universal message of gun avoidance. As a mom of two young daughters, I wanted a way to feature children and adults from all walks of life while delving into more detail.

The book compares firearms to other potentially dangerous adult tools and explores the different types. The goal is to help educate curious minds about how firearms work and the most dangerous parts of a gun. The book also identifies adults children may know who safely and responsibly use firearms. The response has been wonderful, and it is so rewarding to know that it has been a helpful resource for parents and educators to teach firearm safety.

GPM: What advice would you give to those who want to try to get started in shooting?

Golob: Whether you’re interested in recreational shooting or getting involved in the shooting sports, practicing firearm safety and safe gun handling is paramount. After that, it’s very easy to get distracted with all the information, guns, and gear out there. Start with what you have and build on your basic fundamentals. No matter where your journey in shooting takes you, those basic skills will help you excel.

GPM: What would you say are the most common mistakes people make when shooting?

Golob: Probably the most common mistakes lie within the basics. An improper handgun grip can greatly affect your ability to make fast and accurate follow-up shots. Anticipating recoil or the dreaded flinch plagues even the best shooters from time to time. For women, I often see them shoot in a stance that makes recoil control very difficult. Little adjustments can truly make all the difference, but shooters often take the basics for granted. Even as a professional shooter, I work on my fundamentals to make sure I can always shoot my best.

GPM: How did you become a member of the Smith & Wesson shooting team?

Golob: I started my shooting career as a member of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit. When I decided to get out of the Army, I began working in the firearms industry. It wasn’t long before I was offered a position with Smith & Wesson. It has been an incredible opportunity not only from a competition standpoint, but as a way to connect with shooters and hunters from all walks of life and from around the globe. It’s completely my dream job and I consider myself so fortunate.

GPM: How do you train for the sport, or what’s your routine for training?

Golob: My training is event-based. There are so many different disciplines and matches that there’s just no way to shoot them all. I look at the competition schedule and plan my training around the sports and events I know I will compete in throughout the year. I work on sport-specific skills when I practice for those events and make a note of areas I need to improve. I always like to end a training session on a good note or with a skill that I excel in. Improving deficiencies and maintaining strengths is a combination that makes me feel productive and motivated at the same time.

Joe Warta is a Regional Director with the National Association for Gun Rights writing from Colorado. Contact him at

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