Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
“Careful-ish” is my debut novel. I’ve been writing for most of my adult life, including standup comedy and screenplays, and I’ve co-authored a couple of business books that are more fun to read than what you’d expect.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
“Careful-ish: A Ridiculous Romp Through Covid Living As Seen Through The Eyes of Ridiculous People.” I was inspired by every ridiculous and wonderful thing I or someone else did during life in lockdown. It’s set in Manhattan because I used to live there when I was the age of my characters. It’s a great time of life to live in New York—until something like this happens and it’s not. It’s hard to believe some of the crazy stories friends are telling about pandemic Manhattan.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I write like my chair is on fire. And I always wear a bra.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
So much Michener. And I fell in love with Budd Schulberg’s writing in “What Makes Sammy Run.” And in film, I believe one of the single best-written scenes of all time is the final kitchen scene in “Moonstruck,” written by John Patrick Shanley. It’s a movie, but it really brings a playwright’s sense of the theatrical stage.
What are you working on now?
The sequel to “Careful-ish,” called “Daughter of Careful-ish.” More of these ridiculous people (whom I now love), and more of their ridiculous parents, too.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
We have an open group for “Careful-ish” on Facebook. There’s a lot of engagement going on there. (Anyone reading this is welcome to join.) And it’s kinda crazy, but my readers have taken it upon themselves to start sharing selfies with the book. Readers are under hair dryers, doing yardwork, in the tub, with their pets, we even have a couple of goats. So far, nobody has posed nude, but there have been threats…
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Write. Write. Write. Don’t worry about editing until you finish. (Yes, basic advice, I know. But so many writers try to edit before they’ve written.)
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Scared money never wins. (My father is a handicapper, and I grew up around horse racing.)
What are you reading now?
“Anna Karenina.” Check back with me in a month. I’ll likely still be reading it.
What’s next for you as a writer?
Well, “Careful-ish” is a five-book plan—two more books in the trilogy, a prequel, and a novella. Maybe more. So whatever’s next, it doesn’t include sleep.
What is your favorite book of all time?
“Goodnight Moon.” It’s impossible to separate that book from whoever reads it to you. It’s always about love.