Being a designer isn't as wonderful as people make it out to be. Most of the time it embodies labored persistance, accepting failures as lessons, taking as much criticism as possible (while not allowing it to get to you), and taking steps to improve your skills set for the future and after that there's the fun bits.
The same can be applied to developers, trends can go as quickly as they came, but learning efficient work practices, such as source control, documentation, usability and best practices, will be the tools a developer needs no matter what language in or device for.
I got into design and development from needing a website for the team I was playing online video games with. You can't be a serious team without a website... Thankfuly during studies I was opened up to see just how vast the design, development and marketing world actually is. After learning how to respect the craft I was forced into seeing the world in a new way, which just increased my oppsession, essentially giving me no excuse to not spend as much time as possible learning new ways to express myself on the web.
The general organisational, and professional skills are often the most important. Usually I'll try to ask as much questions as possible at the start of a project, this allows me to to just get busy and finish the task at hand. That's not to say I don't enjoy collaborating on projects.
Most of what I read is related to design, whether it be usability, semantecs, information architecture, typography, design principles or even just most of the blogs or sites I browse regularly. I have a good eye for the little details and have been fortunate enough to work on printed publications, websites, interactive dvd's, posters and animation.
I can be a bit geeky at times, so most of the tools for design I can pick up quite quickly, this allows me to spend more time coming up with ideas and think things through rather than simply trying to just get it done.
I have always had an attraction to web-development. I really get a kick out of coding something right the first time, and then learning it can be re-used for something it wasn't originally intended for.