Thanks for visiting my website. I’m a freelance writer and adjunct professor in Woodbury University’s Writing Department. I live in the Los Angeles area with my stop-motion animator husband, Tom, and our two Boston terriers, Old Bean, going on 17, and Buttercup, aka Honey Badger.
I’m originally from Chicago and still get nostalgic about my hometown. I miss riding el trains, White Castle cheeseburgers, Giordano’s stuffed spinach pizza, Second City, the Mag Mile, and pretty much everything after the last big melt until the first massive blizzard. My memoir-in-progress, Things We Couldn’t Live Without, takes place in Chicago during the mid-1950s to early 1970s. Portions have been published in Ray’s Road Review and SLAB.
Background & Passion
I have always loved to write. I kept numerous teenage and young adult journals, filled, respectively, with interjections and introspections. After high school, I went to a (now-defunct) Chicago art school for two years and spent the first part of my professional life as a graphic designer, working for publishers, design offices, and ad agencies.
I never thought to pursue a writing career until my early thirties, after my younger brother died of a drug overdose. Writing not only helped me cope with my grief, but I soon realized that my own relatively sane life could end suddenly. That’s when I decided to heed my bucket list and take my writer’s passion seriously.
Support & Success
Soon after, I discovered Storyarts workshops, an informal group led by writer Paul Pekin, whose inspiration and support led to my first published piece in the Chicago Reader, one of the nation’s largest alternative newspapers, with a peak circulation of 138,000. I soon became a regular contributor.
My success inspired me to finish my undergraduate degree in art history and earn a prestigious Phi Beta Kappa key, followed by an MA in English from University of Illinois/Chicago, where I also taught freshman composition classes.
Moving to Southern California enabled me to officially shift focus from design to writing. Since then, my journalism and promotional writing has appeared in both print and online publications related to health care, medicine, business, and entertainment. In addition, my fiction, memoir, and creative nonfiction has appeared in numerous literary magazines, and one story was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. And like a true California scribe, I penned a few scripts that were contest finalists and subsequently optioned. More details are available in my official bio and in my professional and creative portfolios on this site.
Speaking of So-Cal, only here could I have met Johnny Depp at a press junket for his film Blow, snatched his still warm cigarette butt from the ashtray, and later sold it on Ebay for $200 to a woman from Japan. I later befriended this woman online and flew to the East Coast to help her export two husky puppies from Philly to Japan.
That’s a pitch, if anybody’s interested.