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That time I wanted to pass myself off as Joyce Carol Oates #TBT

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I submitted my first piece of writing when I was seventeen, a story about my first job, working at the employee cafeteria at General Telephone where my mother was a dispatcher. Rolling the 20# white bond backed by a sheet of thin blue carbon paper into my Smith Corona, I typed it out slowly, carefully, on a piece of erasable paper—and mailed it off to Cosmopolitan along with a cover letter. Not just to any editor at Cosmo, by the way, I sent it directly to Helen Gurley Brown. 

The piece itself, meant to be comical, was full of clumsy attempts at self-effacing humor.  I strived for a similar tone in the cover letter I addressed to Brown, completely clueless that the high powered editor in chief wasn’t the one reading unsolicited manuscripts. After I signed off I added the following PS. I could have said I was Joyce Carol Oates. What I thought that would accomplish I can’t imagine. That an unsatisfactory submission would get published because of a lame joke? 

No surprise, in the SASE I’d …

805 Living archives




I just added some links to a smattering of the work I did for 805 Living where I was a regular monthly contributor from 2004 to 2008. I stopped writing when my real estate work amped up to the point I simply didn't have time.

Somewhere in storage there's a big old cardboard box full of pieces that I wrote about area places and people including Q&A's with some notable names ie Colbie Caillat, The Bachelor's Chris Harrison, CNBC 's Jane Wells, ABC's Ellen Leyva, Patrick Warburton, Anne Lockhart, surf queen Mary Osborne and more for the magazine's last page feature, PS. I'm going to try to find that big old box and scan some additional pieces and put them here. 

I'm not delusional enough to pretend I'm doing this for you. I know it's for me. For my ego. You don't even have to read 'em; I can see them. I can say 'okay, Simmy, you never threw a decent dinner party in your life but every once in awhile you wrote something. And sometimes, even if it was some non-creative, non-fiction piece about a local business, someone - mostly editor Lynne Andujar at 805 Living - paid me for it!  


While I've mostly stopped being a realtor, I realize now that a writer - whether she's a great American novelist, blogger, poet, short story writer, journalist, screenwriter, essayist, author, memoirist or an 'advertorial' writer like Hannah in Girls - can never stop being a writer. Good writer or bad, a writer is what I am. 


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Comments

  1. Admitting your addiction is the first step. Lol. Thanks for sharing your writing. I can't wait until I have some downtime so I can revel in your words.

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    1. You are my greatest fan ... oh wait, you're my only fan, LOL! But seriously, you're so sweet to bother :)

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