The Vacation Irony

imageI came to Florida to relax. To get a handle on the stress that infests my cognitive processes, chewing through irreplaceable synapses, and gumming up my creativity with its rancid effluvia. I was desperate to shed the excess layers of self-doubt, muddled priorities, and fear of failure that pad my hips and my psyche. I envisioned a fresh start in the Florida sunshine. I would rise each morning and swim laps in the private pool after a light breakfast of good old American calories and creative thinking. My thoughts would lighten as would my belly. If Mark Twain and Oprah Winfrey had a child, this would be that glorious offspring’s dream getaway. [Read more…]

The Writer, the Bully, and the Really Puffy Jacket

image Tonight I’m looking for a particular YA novel. I know the first four words in the title, “The Dark Side of”. So I do what any avid reader does in a town with an impressive public library just a bike ride away…I google the book. Here’s what I find…

The Dark Side of The Moon
The Dark Side of Disney
The Dark Side of Love
The Dark Side of Men
The Dark Side of Women
The Dark Side of Family
The Dark Side of Religion
The Dark Side of Hope

I close the laptop and stuff a spoonful of sorbet into my mouth. Then, I ask my poodle, “Does everything have a dark side?” She doesn’t know. I google “the dark side of poodles” and the screen fills with stories of designer dogs gone bad. I move away from the laptop. And the poodle. [Read more…]

My Nicholl’s Worth

home

Every writer needs a panic room. It should look like those indoor play areas at the airport, with lots of padded surfaces and cool cubbies in which a stressed-out scribe can cower. Did I mention the classic arcade games and vending machines that disgorge an endless supply of Newman’s cookies?

This past year was a challenging one for my development slate and I NEED a fortress of solitude to call my own. My beloved Grandpa passed; my parents moved far away; and my neurotic poodle has developed propecia, but in the words of my idol, Tina Fey, “I will not be blamed.” Just when it seems like my career drive has run out of road, a hero swoops in to save the day. His name is Oscar. [Read more…]