Wait? Didn’t the person who owned this website write mysteries or something?
Yes, she did. I did. It’s a long story, but I’m going to tell it anyway. It went something like this:
I had the fortune two years ago to land a very good agent, who attempted to sell a series of humorous mysteries I was writing about celebrity culture. Insert business babble here – market timing, over-saturation, economic downturn, publishing industry implosion, blah, blah. The result was a frustrated writer and a frustrated agent. The agent, being awesome and plucky, finally said, “Couldn’t you write something, I don’t know, different?” (Subtext: Give me something I can sell, woman, before I have to set myself on fire and sell tickets just to make enough to pay my electric bill.)
I proceeded to spend the next two months starting and not finishing three books, wallowing in self doubt and eating a lot of French fries. It turned out that none of those things were very helpful, so I stopped, pulled up my big girl panties and wrote a goddamn book.
One thing did not change. I write funny books. I can’t help myself. It’s just what I do.
Everything else, however, did change. I’d had the ever-loving snot knocked out of me and emerged dirty, bruised and making rude hand gestures. I was going to write the book I wanted to write. I was going to write it even though it was a ninety-degree left turn from anything I’d ever done before. I was going to write it even though it was ambitious and scary and hard and stood an excellent chance of exploding over New Jersey like the Hindenburg. I did not tell my agent what I was doing. (I don’t necessarily recommend that as a business strategy.) I simply finished it and sent it in and then waited to be fired.
I was not fired.
I was, however, threatened. The plucky agent was just a wee bit pissed off that I’d been holding out on her writing those less-than-challenging paparazzi books, and should I ever pull that crap again it’s possible she might come after me in a bar and start a girl slap fight.
So that’s what happened. That’s how I went from mysteries to literary fiction. (Literary fiction, general fiction, call it what you like. Also please note, I have not gone all snooty about this. My best friends write genre. I love genre. I read genre. I am in no way implying that literary fiction is better. Mostly I just write fewer gun fights now.)
The website reflects that change and the new manuscript. I think it’s possible I’m the only person to have written a funny book about mental illness, high-end art, sisterly betrayal, failed marriages and quite a lot of Mexican food, now that I look back on it.
Stay tuned for developments. In the meantime, I’ll still be here writing about L.A., the city I love, in the funniest way I can. Hang with me. It’s a whole new ride.