Posts

Showing posts from February, 2015

Featured Post

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

Image
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 …

Cuddling with Oscar

What are you doing Sunday night? Please don't say live-tweeting the Oscars! I know it's what we do in 2015, live tweet everything, share our every thought with the world but I won't be doing that. I'm not putting it down—I tried last year and it was an epic fail—I just don't have the capacity to watch and tweet. Even though I reserve the right to insist that as a woman, YES! I can do two things at once, I can multi-task—and bring home the bacon and fry it up in a pan, I am woman, W-O-M-A-N— but maybe it's time to leave the live-tweeting to you crazy kids under 30. Not to be a whiner but arthritic hands don't tend to fly across the tiny telephone screen with any kind of accuracy. I'm always missing the best things—the JLaw stairway fall, Alec Baldwin bungling Idina Menzel's name—as I'm stuck staring at my phone, furiously trying to correct auto-correct.
Read the rest of this post on Chapter1-Take1.






Dash It All Downton — You've Done it Again

Downton Abbey has done it to me again. Stirred up a longing, a feeling of homesickness for Englandso intense it's threatening to turn into a full blown case of Philopatridomania. A word that ends with mania is never a good thing: Philopatridomania is an 'insane' desire to return home, 'excessive' homesickness. Blame it on Downton's outspoken socialist, Miss Bunting! She's leaving the village behind—and Tom Branson with it—heading for a job at a school in Preston, Lancashire.

Preston! 'That's where my dad was born' I squeal to the flat screen. My insanity has not progressed to the point that the screen answers back so I turn to google, looking at houses and flats 'to let' in the north of England, wondering what a maisonette is and what exactly they mean by a one bedroom double?

I've been to Preston once, back when I was twenty, when I met my Grandma Good for the first and only time. It's funny, isn't it, how we call the grandpar…