Category Archives: Life as I Know it

Column: A new obsession, just in time

I am a man of great, but specific, enthusiasms. Let’s start there. Mack Bolan. Any idea who that is? You might have, but I didn’t until a few weeks ago and now he’s almost all I think about. I’ll explain, shall I? As we’ve discussed to some extent before, I love pulp fiction. We just […]

Column: May the funny one win?

I’ve always gotten by being the funny one. It was late in elementary school when I realized it wasn’t going to be my looks or my athletic prowess—and certainly not my dire lack of both—that was going to carry the day for me, if in fact I was ever going to win any days. It […]

Column: The best places I’ve never lived

First of all, thank you to everyone who wrote in suggesting things I should do during my 12-hour layover in Chicago this past weekend. I took the Chicago Architecture Foundation river cruise, which was the most suggested thing, and it was great. In fact, my whole do-it-yourself Amtrak residency to get started on my next […]

Column: What am I not going to do?

As I’ve understood it, Chicago is a hell of a town. Let’s hope so. Several weeks ago, we talked about my fascination and wonder with the possibility of an Amtrak residency, wherein a writer was able to ride the rails free of charge so long as she, in addition to any other writing she did, […]

Column: How not to handle a kidnapping

As I write this, 200 Nigerian schoolgirls, most ranging in age from 16 to 18, are in the custody of Boko Haram, a radical Islamist terrorist group, somewhere in the country’s jungles. To date, the most significant sign of the world’s outrage is a hashtag on Twitter. In 1904, President Theodore Roosevelt was confronted with […]

Column: I did it! Wait, did I do it?

By the time you read this, I will have a novella on the market. I’m ecstatic about that. I think. I’ve wanted to write fiction since I was in the first grade. I didn’t realize I wanted to be serious about writing fiction until about 12th grade. I don’t know how or why but, once […]