I am a writer, avid reader, and “Bookstore Explorer” represented by Stephen Fraser at the Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency.
What exactly is a “bookstore explorer”? Well, for years I’d been visiting independent bookstores during my travels and documenting them on Instagram when it dawned on me that there’s probably a book in there somewhere. Since I live in West Virginia, in 2018 I set off to visit every store in the state and tell their stories. The resulting project, Bookstore Explorer: West Virginia, is coming January 2020. You can follow along with all my bookstore explorations at BookstoreExplorer.com.
While I’ve also written plenty of poetry, lyrics, and some young adult fiction, my next foray is a children’s picture book about urban farming called Chicks and the City, which tells of an adventurous little chicken who ventures from the farm to the big city to prove that agriculture can happen anywhere. I’m currently working with illustrator Ashley Belote, and the book is slated for release from Headline Books next spring.
- For 20+ years, I’ve operated a website for the Golden Girls spinoff series, Empty Nest. It’s led to some pretty cool stuff, like these interviews and getting to meet most of the cast in Los Angeles.
- I love folkie/Americana/singer-songwriter music, i.e. Rosanne Cash, Shovels & Rope, Patty Griffin,Tanya Tucker, Brandi Carlile, Elvis Costello, Bob Dylan, Cyndi Lauper. (Okay, Cyn isn’t folkie, but she is a singer-songwriter.)
- I’ve seen Joan Osborne in concert six times. Maybe seven.
- I have never, ever, played Checkers.
- I have a master’s degree in marketing.
- I’m close, personal friends with Cloris Leachman. That photo there proves it, right?
- I secretly prefer the Cloris years of The Facts of Life to the Charlotte Rae years. Don’t tell anybody.
- The Wizard of Oz is my favorite movie ever.
- To Kill a Mockingbird is my favorite book ever.
- I love a good cozy mystery. It’s my guilty pleasure read.
- I went to the animal shelter to adopt a dog and came home with two orange cat sisters. I work for them now. One of them is being immortalized in Chicks and the City. Don’t tell the other one.
- I have a big-ass tattoo of an antique typewriter on my right arm, from elbow to shoulder blade (and another little baby tattoo on my right ankle).
- I recently turned my basement into a literary themed bar. There’s a card catalog, a Sherlock Holmes chess set, a library cart, and plenty of bookish artwork, decor…and books. Lots of books.
- I should be writing instead of doing this.