> Author of the books Honky Tonk Debutante and Paddlefish
> Writer, wife, mom, public speaker, avid flyfisher, and terminal jukebox junkie
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I was in the fourth grade when I knew, and I mean I knew, I wanted to write. But despite holding fast to this vision through the decades and spending all four years in college studying creative writing, I didn’t launch my full-time writing career until much later in life. Because immediately following graduation I went to work for Neiman-Marcus as an Assistant Buyer. From there I landed a plum job in account management at a national advertising and marketing agency. This experience ultimately teed me up to become Managing Director of Creative Services at a public opinion and crisis management consulting firm. (I know, I know…yawn.)
One day, after fourteen years in the corporate machine, I had my Norma Rae moment. Hasta la vista, Lumbergh, you can stuff your TPS reports where the sun don’t shine.
I chucked my steady J-O-B to finally realize my goal of writing full-time. Way back in those college days, I had consistently received high marks for character development, symbolism, dialog, and theme. But I was abysmally weak on plot. I had all these flawed-but-likable characters with witty banter, but I didn’t know what to do with them. Over time I realized life was serving up plot on a silver platter. So non-fiction would become my natural sweet spot. I started by blogging and was immediately humbled and inspired by generous feedback from readers.
Grueling output and nagging self-doubt plagued me then, just as it does today, but a lucky break came along that validated my efforts and unlocked a whole new season of creativity: a publisher found me. In 2011 Departure Publishing released my first book, Paddlefish, which is an account of my adventures in a 260-mile river race. From its success I decided to partner with my husband and my father to create our own publishing entity called Bottle Shock Publishing. In February 2014 Bottle Shock released my second book, Honky Tonk Debutante: The history of honky-tonk music as I care to tell it.
There are few things that give me more pleasure than writing stories and sharing them with anyone who cares to give them a whirl. I am deeply grateful to those of you who read and cheerlead as I ramble in these posts and articles, so I will swing for the fences and do my best to share the most honest, poignant pieces I can create. Hopefully a few of them will entertain you along the way.
And so the story goes…
My first blog was called CHICKEN FRIED THERAPY. As I moved on to writing books and other sites I had trouble maintaining it all so I recruited some girlfriends to post now and then. In the end, we didn’t have enough bandwidth to keep it going. But there are achingly funny stories on CFT that still make me giggle, so I keep the site up for my own personal amusement. Feel free to browse around if you need a laugh.
My second blog was FLY FISH CHICK. I love to fish, specifically with a flyrod, so in 2008 I launched FLY FISH CHICK to share stories about this passion, my fishing trips, and the hilarity that oft ensued. Over the years I found myself writing about any and all topics so don’t be surprised if the pieces aren’t strictly fishing related. I will continue to post over on FLY FISH CHICK, but going forward I am going to try and keep the stories on FFC about fishing. Especially now that I have this website to write about everything else under the sun.
One of the most common questions I receive is, “Why do you live in Texas and Alabama?” The answer is simple: Love.
I was single in Austin and loving life with my daughter, Sophie, when I fell head over heels for a southern boy named Tom Warren. He was from Alabama and owned his own business in his hometown of Mobile. We decided not to let pesky geography get in the way of fate. We married in 2010, and he moved to Austin to be with Sophie and me. Sophie is a teenager now; she goes to school in Austin, and we raise her here. But Tom’s work is in Mobile, so we live in Texas most of the time, Alabama part of the time, and steal away to Montana as often as we can.
We’re just a modern blended family making it work! With as many airline points as we can lay our hands on.
(The next most common question I receive is, “If you lived in Texas and he lived in Alabama, where did you and Tom meet?” The answer is simple: On a boat ramp next to a river in Montana.)