In the works, so stay tuned.
Writing surfaced as my preferred medium long before I understood what it meant to choose a career. I’ve embraced my calling as a writer, danced around it, turned my back on it, pursued it in secret, announced it to the world and rejected it in shame. Then after asking for forgiveness, I walked tentatively with the Writer inside of me on this tilt-a-whirl journey to become a published author. But not until I fell into the writing well without end-gaining did the momentum of creativity take hold.
Two completed manuscripts are hidden under my TBR pile. On my writing desk (above) is the umpteenth draft of my fictional WIP: A Second Line—a story set in Post-Katrina New Orleans. Also in the works is a memoir about my journey to publication: I’m Not Nora Ephron, but I Might be Virginia Woolf: and other Mortifying Tales of Writing. Below is a prequel to the memoir: my ongoing…
CHRONICLE OF A WRITER IN PROGRESS…
1950s— I enter the world screaming for comfort while dreaming of life as a Contender.
1960s— My storytelling abilities surface early. I lie with a straight face and laugh when I offer the truth. Friends say I’m destined to be famous. I dream of being the next Alfred Hitchcock and write stories for his television show.
1970s— I trade in Hitchcock for Emily Dickinson. Pen poems by candlelight and submit them to Random House. The Random House rejection doesn’t stop me, but my college writing professor crushes me. By the end of the decade writing becomes a secret.
1980s— Graduate from the University of New Orleans with a MFA in Performance and a minor in Stripping. Poetry transforms into playwriting.
1990s— Work as an Actress, Acting coach, Director and Choreographer. Complete six plays. Beating the Odds, a one-act, is part of the Washington D.C. Theatre Festival and staged at Mill Mountain Theatre in Roanoke, Virginia.
2000-2010— Swap plays for short stories thanks to a Writers Workshop in New Paltz, New York. Write a short story called Telegram Express based on how I ended up as a stripper in New Orleans. Participants encourage me to expand it into a novel. Complete the novel and write two more. Attend a Writers Workshop sponsored by the League of Vermont Writers with guest speaker Chuck Sambuchino. He critiques my first chapter and encourages me to go to Writing Conferences. I attend the Surrey International Writers Conference and realize I don’t know anything about writing. Rewrites become my middle name and my new license plate.
2011— Attend the Backspace Writers Conference with Agent-Author Seminar. Share the opening chapter of my Telegram Express novel. Agents inform me that I have no voice. Meltdown. Can’t write.
2012— Launch Jocosa’s Bookshelf. Begin a memoir. In December I quit my day job and write full-time.
2013— Exercise injury sets up a pain cycle my body is unable to break, can barely walk, impossible to write.
2014— Attend Woodstock Writers Festival. A panel on Writing, Music and Yoga prompts me to purchase The Great Work of Your Life by Stephen Cope. Cope’s book sends me back to my yoga mat. I switch from Hatha yoga to Kundalini and my body heals. Writing resumes. Complete the 9th Draft of Telegram Express on Bloomsday, June 16th at 4:42 pm. In November I attend the WriterUnboxed Unconference and discover the seeds for a new novel.
2015— February, Telegram Express/The 9th Draft acquires a new title: A Second Line. More rewrites and Beta Readers. Agent research. Restart the memoir.
2016— After receiving mixed feedback from several editors on the submission package for A Second Line, I QUIT Writing. Travel to Japan to visit my youngest son. Enroll in a creative writing class and rediscover the joy.
2017— Send my short stories and creative non-fiction out on submission. Go on hiatus from reviewing books in order to write a slogging first draft of my memoir. Then, developmental work on that damn New Orleans story to see if another revision is justified. Introduce author interviews.