THE SHORT STORY
I’m a writer living in Los Angeles with my fiance Andy, our cat Spanky, and our guinea pig Monty. I write blog posts, articles, essays, plays, screenplays, and short stories.
My latest writing project is Plenty Woman, a website for women ready to believe we are everything anxiety says we’re not: Beautiful. Lovable. Powerful. Important. Smart.
If you want a look at my resume, here’s my LinkedIn page.
THE LONG STORY
WHEREIN I SHARE THE NARRATIVE OF MY WRITING CAREER among other related things
I was in Phoenix working as a proofreader for a non-profit college (yes, one of those before I knew what one of those meant) when I landed my first full-time writing job in 2000. It wasn’t easy, an invaluable lesson in the power and necessity of persistence, especially as a writer.
The interview was good. The phone call telling me I had the job was great. The waiting around for a start-date was maddening.
I don’t remember the explanation for the delay; I just remember not knowing when I was supposed to start and calling in every few days to ask about it (i.e., make sure this wasn’t some weird scam, the upshot of which I could not fathom).
More than once I wanted to give up on the whole thing, but I wanted the job more, so I just kept calling until they finally broke down and told me to come in.
It was a direct response marketing company and they’d hired me to write fundraising letters for non-profits. I had no intention of doing that for as long as I did but found it to be such a good fit that the next thing I knew, it was 2009.
It was during this period of time when I decided to be a writer. Not just as a job, but as a career.
In my spare time, I started writing screenplays and planning a move to Los Angeles (encouraged by my placement as a quarterfinalist in the 2008 Nicholl Fellowship screenwriting competition). I also started a handful of now-retired blogs and taught myself search engine optimization (SEO).
GETTING PAID TO TWEET
By 2008, I realized I knew enough about SEO to get a job in the field. More importantly, I liked it enough to want to learn more. So in my last year of writing fundraising letters, which by then I was doing freelance, I transitioned into a full-time job as an SEO copywriter.
Though there’s not much thrill in writing keyword-optimized content, the real value of that job was in what I learned about internet marketing. SEO, yes. But, to my pleasant surprise, social media.
Though Facebook was founded in 2004 and Twitter in 2006, selling businesses on the importance of social media marketing in 2008 was no easy task. But when we did, it was my job to manage their accounts. I loved it, disbelieving someone was actually paying me to tweet.
In 2010, I made the move to L.A., a feat I’d been trying to make happen for years. I credit the magic of that move to what can happen when an alcoholic gets sober, which I’d done 2 months prior (December 22, 2009).
Fortunately, I was able to take my work with me to L.A., staying on with the internet marketing company as a freelancer.
That same year, I started my own social media marketing company and picked up blogging work that I’ve been doing ever since, mostly in the personal finance space. Money was the last thing in the world I thought I’d ever write about but I believe the universe gives you what you need (i.e., my financial life was shit and writing every day about how to make it better did the trick).
I had moved to Los Angeles to write screenplays, but found myself drawn into the Hollywood theater scene. I was invited into a playwriting group somewhere around 2011. We did more than write, though. We produced two series of one-act plays in 2012, a love-hate experience all around.
It was the first time professional actors had ever said my words aloud, which was a thrill. And it was the first time my work was performed in front of an audience, which was terrifying.
In fact, it was during that time producing plays in Hollywood that my life-long anxiety was at its height. I saw my first therapist, found out I had generalized anxiety disorder, and started learning how to deal.
In 2014, I found myself searching for a website for women with anxiety. I found plenty of sites about anxiety. And plenty of sites about women’s health. But not much specific to women and anxiety. They say write the book you want to read, so that’s what I did with the website.
In January 2016, I launched Plenty Woman, a website for women ready to believe we are everything anxiety says we’re not — Beautiful, Lovable, Powerful, Important, Smart. It’s essays. It’s how-to’s. It’s guided meditations that I write and record myself. It’s more too, a lot of which I’m still discovering and fleshing out.
Thanks for reading or scanning, whichever the case may be.