Television Crisis

Ever since we cut the cord a few years ago, I've changed the way I do television. I can't just flip it on and watch. It has to be purposeful ....more

Black Kittens

I am working, at the moment, with a big black cat who used to be an overly-long-yet-still-skinny black kitten asleep in my lap. He has utterly ruined me for the rest of the cat world. I'm in love with black cats ....more

2014 What-Were-They-Thinking Gift Guide

Every year, we (like you) get hundreds of product pitches. The PR machine kicks into high gear around early October, and that's when we BlogHer staffers start sending the best ones around for everyone to enjoy. And by best, I mean, WTF?...more
The bacon armor and gooey louie are the BEST!!!  To me those really deserve a standing ovation ...more

Rebuilding the Idea

Well, Southwest Airlines has sent me three very nice emails telling me they are thurching and thurching for my writing notebook, but alas, I fear it's gone. Gone, gone, gone, along with all those lovely ideas for chapter beginnings for my new novel. I remember what the device was, just not the embodiments of the device ....more

Stop! You Can't Give 'You Have to F*cking Eat' to a Parent

Certain parenting truths exist that those who cling to their hipness after childbirth are loath to reveal. Being an adult gets harder as the children grow older and begin to understand what is really in your juice glass at their birthday parties. Do you remember the day you realized you could no longer Speak-n-Spell your way through conversations about Christmas presents, flu shots and blow jobs? Yeah. That extends to reading. As in kids who know how to read and who also live in your house....more
Give parents some credit. I bought Go the F to Sleep because I needed some comic relief from my ...more

On Robert Plant and Art

I was driving to meet a friend for dinner when I heard a Robert Plant interview on the radio. I've searched in vain to find a transcript; I think it's lost to the winds of change. I grew up on Led Zeppelin, as classic rock lives on in southwest Iowa today as it did in its heydey ....more

The Unintentional Anti-NaBloPoMo

While a lot of my friends were killing it posting every day in November for NaBloPoMo (that's National Blog Posting Month for the uninitiated), I think I set a Surrender, Dorothy record for least amount of posts in a month, ever. A series of events overlapped like a time-sucking eclipse of crazy this month. It won't get much better next week, as I'm leaving tomorrow on a jet plane to go to BlogHer PRO '14 in the Bay area to speak on a panel about book publishing with the awesome Laura Fraser...more

Mike Brown, #Ferguson, and "You Should Have Seen This Coming"

I paused a DVRed episode of "The Voice" to listen to the press conference regarding the possible indictment of Darren Wilson for the killing of Michael Brown. My ten-year-old asked for an explanation, and I fumbled around for words before simply saying a boy was shot and left for dead on the street for four hours, and now they're not even going to charge the man who did it. She asked why. I didn't have an answer. "I don't know," I said. "He was tall. He was strong. He was black." I knew only the last sentence really mattered. I didn't used to think such things matter. I've grown up. I've been educated....more
Is it justice to indict against the facts so a community will not be destroyed by it's own ...more

How to Write a Headline or Teaser That's Impossible to Ignore

Have you finally penned your masterpiece, soon-to-be-viral post? Hold up: There's a little more to write, and it's incredibly important. Your post title, as well as what you say about your post in social media, are your workhorses. The best post in the world does no good if no one clicks through to it. ...more
Thanks for sharing this! It's a great list. I struggle with writing headlines on my blog, Rudeysroommore

5 Gift Ideas for Your Picky Tween (That Aren't a Toy)

I have a ten-year-old, and man, tweens are the worst people to shop for. Are they too old for dolls and toys? Are they too young for technical gizmos and clothes? No kid wants to open a gift card. I've scoured the pitches, the Internet and the catalogs to find these five fun gift ideas for tween girls. ...more
femininecollective You're welcome.more