Month: September 2017

My Essay is Included in the All-Time Best Narratively Memoirs

This morning, I woke up to some solid news. An essay I wrote in 2015 that appeared in Narratively was selected as one of their all-time best in their five-year history. Narratively has such incredible writers publishing work, and I’m honored to be included.

Looking back on the piece was strange. It was certainly a hard essay to write, and I often wonder, years later, should I have written it? It’s very personable, it’s intimate, and I probably share too much information on a subject that most people consider private.

Screenshot 2017-09-29 10.01.16

But when I wrote it many years ago, my intention was to shed light on an issue that is extremely important: Mental health. I still think that one of the biggest problems in our country is how we treat mental illness. From the stigma still associated with people who are struggling to the quiet conversations we have hidden away in small corners of isolated rooms about illness to the trauma it takes on families, we are nowhere near where we should be as a society when tackling these challenges.

I understand all that. However, when you reveal details about someone you love for a bigger ideal, it’s so easy to tear yourself up for trying to make a point, to share an experience.

But even though I still question whether or not it’s a good idea to share intimate details of family for the sake of art, for stories, for a bigger idea, I do believe there are a couple points from the essay that still really resonate with me, and two years later, it still strikes me in a way that felt honest, good, and true. This one stands out: We will always have breakdowns to remind us we are family.


When Dogs Run Away, New Essay in the Los Angeles Review

When I opened the door to our office in Ocean Beach, San Diego, one of our office dogs ran out into the street, and I started sprinting after it, yelling and trying to get it to stop from running into traffic. It’s a bizarre feeling, attempting to convince a dog who is on a dash to consider their safety. It’s an almost impossible task. Words fail. So, this incident got me thinking about how many times I have found myself trying to help when dogs run away. Then it got me thinking about language and how challenging it is to communicate with not only animals but people when they are running toward disaster. The result is my essay at the LA Review. Find out what happened when I opened the door to our office and began chasing after a beloved dog loose in the streets of San Diego. Read the article here: When Dogs Run Away.