Bad Dates & The Magic of Community Tables

I’d be hard pressed to find a writer who hasn’t had the experience of someone asking if a character in their book is based on them, or if they really do write the people they know into their books. I can assure you that I’ve never written an actual person I know directly into my books.

Unless you’re sitting across the communal table from me at a coffee shop and happen to be talking about that bad date you had. And I also just happen to be writing a book where the main character is going to go on some terrible dates. That might end up in my book.

Speaking of which, a huge thanks to the ladies across the table at a coffee shop in Portland, Oregon who gave me the amazing material below the other day. Because, truly, sometimes you can’t make this stuff up: Continue reading


There seem to be a lot of first dates going on in my neighborhood recently. Or maybe they’ve always been there and I’m more aware because I just wrote a super awkward first date scene in the novel I’m working on… hard to know. Anyway, here are two of my favorite observed moments (partially fictionalized, naturally): Continue reading

To the Gentleman at the Brewery


Dear Sir,

You had a lot to drink last Saturday evening. So did your friends. I know this because, while my husband and I enjoyed our flight of delicious IPAs, one of you spilled a beer. It wasn’t the spilling in and of itself that gave you away, it was the fact that your cell phone sat right there on the table in a puddle of beer for far, far longer than I imagine you realized. (So if it hasn’t been working quite right, well there you go). Continue reading