Is going viral the new selling out?

and after going viral, do you go....epidemic?

Greetings, collection of unmatched forks, all of which are useful in their own way:

This week’s food for thought (unproductive thought that kept me from getting any work done):

Why is it that it is so impossible to laugh yourself into exhaustion when you are alone but so easy to do that in a group? And, equally weird: why is is easier to let yourself cry into heaving sobs when you are alone instead of with other people?

What is UP with that?

“Women Laughing Alone with a Salad” is a meme. I found out by trying to Google an image of someone laughing alone.The internet is a bizarre place. You’re welcome.


I got my very first print review from a stranger this week! I’m still reeling from the shock and delight of it. I’m sure that if you are anywhere on my social media, you’ve already see it, but for the two of you who haven’t, I’m going to put it below. Think of it as a slow-mo replay.

It’s a little terrifying, actually - if I feel this good about a positive review, what on earth would I feel about a negative one? The advice is never to read any reviews, good or bad, but truthfully? I think that this might be what I live for: other people telling me that my words mattered to them. Anyway, here’s the link to the full review - mine is about halfway down the page. (It is clearly an old website from the 90s that’s never been updated, so if you have a single design-loving bone in your body, don’t click that link.)

Here’s the good stuff, all pretty for you:

“Critique: A unique and seminal DIY instructional for writers who are parents (and parents who aspire to become writers), "Book and Baby: The Complete Guide to Managing Chaos and Becoming A Wildly Successful Writer-Parent" must be considered a mandatory read. A thoroughly comprehensive and 'user friendly' instructional manual in both organization and presentation, "Book and Baby" is especially and unreservedly recommended for professional, community, college and university library Writing/Publishing collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Book and Baby" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $3.99).” — The Midwest Book Review.

I’m over the moon. Feel free to buy the book if the review convinced you. (or ask your local college library to carry it!!) Here’s a link that will let you get it from a bookstore local to you (and the website will also make a donation to Pen Parentis) But if you want the electronic version, it’s here.


I did a fun interview with Andrew Cotto who is about to launch a new series called Bookish. It’s affiliated with In the Limelight which, he tells me, was founded by an American model who made it big in Italy. I’m looking forward to exploring the site when it’s up!


If you would like to watch the playback of the last Literary Salon that I hosted, here’s the link. The theme is Love and Loss. The co-host is Christina Chiu. The featured authors are Marion Winik, Melanie S. Hatter, and Marian Fontana. That name game (Marion, Marian, and Melanie) was a fun challenge for such a heavy theme.

This was the penultimate episode of the 25th Season of Pen Parentis Salons. I have been doing this a very very long time, my friends.

Last thoughts: remember when we justified paying for Cable TV because it let you watch movies without ads? My daughter is currently watching a movie we rented on top of a subscription service, and it has ads you can’t skip. How did we allow this to happen, humanity? Ah, and the ads are drug-ads. Better still. It’s not just an ad, it’s a demand for volunteer marketing staff: “Ask your doctor about….”

How did consumers turn into unpaid pharmaceutical staff?

So... Did I mention, you can obtain my book by asking about it at your local bookstore?

Hope you’re laughing. We all need a good laugh. Have a terrific week, my friend!