The Road Les Travelled
How did I get here? The road was winding and not always paved, but that makes the creative journey even more interesting. Here are a few highlights that led to this life of storytelling.
And So it Begins...
Dinner and a show? Yes, please! A flair for the dramatic was sparked at an early age. Evening entertainment consisted of grandma's scarves and costume jewelry. There would be jokes, magic tricks, singing, and of course, dancing in the living room. Did I think of it as telling a story through dance? Probably not at the time, but that didn't make it any less relevant.
Shaping Young Minds
I published my first short stories in 5th grade. These fictional accounts were set on a deserted island where my friends and I lived without parents, only pet dolphins. There was always drama because—well, what else is there to write about in 5th grade?
The acting bug started biting in middle school. Summer stock, high school plays, and community theater all contributed to building my confidence for captivating a restless audience of kindergarteners.
After years of babysitting and countless sessions of playing school, it was only natural that I make it official and get a degree in Elementary Education.
From Page to Stage and Screen
When I wasn't teaching or entertaining kids as the Drama Specialist at summer camp, I was writing. My first published work blended my love for story and stage. Soon I was directing a one-night-only, script-in-hand performance of my play, Table for Two.
Fresh off the stage, it was time to try the screen. Interning with a casting director led to office managing for a talent agency which led to freelance production assistant gigs—one of the biggest for Celebrity Jeopardy! in NYC. Then I worked as a children's talent agent (not teaching, but close). More freelance production work followed, but this time I focused on feeding the on-set cast and crew as a craft service assistant.
There were a few acting gigs—mostly background work in feature films and supporting roles in indies. Work on set not only inspired the writing of my first screenplay and directing/producing my own film, Long Lost Life, but it also played a major role in writing my first novel, Remember.
My second novel, Aunty Says Get a Life, is inspired by my own aunt, her heartfelt advice, and other real events. Wanderlust plays a major role in this story as well as in my soul.
Whether it was on stage, screen, or Grandma's living room, telling stories has always been a part of my life. Now, with the books and blogs I'm writing, the audience has grown—thanks to the internet and social media. The journey continues to twist and turn, with a new focus on freelance writing and a deep dive into Children's Literature. Hopefully my work inspires others as it inspires me every day.