Childhood Ambition: Be the best writer who ever lived. (I was 10 and had never heard of Shakespeare.)
Little-Known Fact: Had first story published (on a mimeograph machine) when in the fourth grade.
Honors: Won first place in a feature-writing contest in high school, despite horrible spelling.
Influences: John Knowles, Earnest Hemingway, Philip Roth, Truman Capote, Norman Mailer, Joan Didion, Elizabeth Tallent, Milan Kundera.
Proudest Moment So Far: Having my first short story published in the Beloit Fiction Journal. (I have another story coming out in Hobart next month that I'm equally proud of.)
Inspiration: Catherine Ryan Hyde, author of Pay It Forward, who told me she collected 120 rejections before her first story was published. (It does pay to be persistent.)
Most Encouraging Note: "I think you're a good writer and I liked what I read ... I cannot flatter where writing is concerned." - L.H., SoHo Press.
Most Discouraging Note: "I'm afraid this is nowhere near the novel I had hoped for." - L.H., SoHo Press.
Best Advice from a Fellow Writer: "Diversify your emotional investments." - Greg Bardsley.
Goal: Be more playful.