Every time I blog about Rob, I blog about Al…

…and Chuck and Vin and Jim. 5 guys named moe.

These 5 guys are my bosses and some of the nicest and most talented musicians I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. And I am not just saying that because they pay me. (Actually, I pay me. Cuz I’m in charge of the money!)

There are days (well, nights) when I go to shows and I spend most of my time backstage schmoozing with people or crunching numbers with Skip – tour manager extraordinaire – or chasing my kid and preventing her from eating all the catering that is supposed to be for the band when they come off stage tired, sweaty and in need of food and (if it’s Jim) Yoo-Hoo. I can go a whole night without even stepping out to Front of House or side-stage to watch a song or a set.

Then there are other nights when I stand there in total awe. When each song sounds better than the next, and more amazing than the last time I heard them play it.

And then they do something like this –              moe. plays “Crab Eyes” live on iPads. Video dedicated to the memory of Steve Jobs.

They set down their guitars and stepped away from their percussion and drum kits and re-created a fairly flawless facsimile of one of their songs…using iPads. Proving that true musicians can master ANY instrument. And just play the hell out of it.

Can YOU Say NaNoWriMo?

National Novel Writing Month

Don’t worry. My mouth had a hard time pronouncing it at first, too. But my brain knew from the minute it learned about National Novel Writing Month, it wanted to participate this year.

For those of you unfamiliar with NaNoWriMo, it’s 30 days and nights of literary abandon as you attempt to write a 50K word novel from start to finish within the month of November. Now, April may be the cruelest month…but November, she’s a bitch, too.

There’s all the pre-Xmas and Hanukkah hoopla, there’s parent-teacher conferences, and my kids’ Variety Show to attend. There are all the events which I (over)volunteered myself for with the school’s PTA. I’m still reeling from the month of “ill” in September when half the house was sick and caused my platelets (due to a pesky auto-immune disorder I have called ITP) to take a nosedive throughout October. As well as the fact that my amazingly healthy dad who normally defies medical odds had to have major surgery yesterday and I plan on spending a lot of quality time with him during his month-long re-cooperation. I’ve got a road trip planned with my childhood friend Steph to see the mighty Judas Priest on their farewell tour, too! Oh, and did I mention Thanksgiving? It happens to be one of the busiest weekends of the year for touring rock bands. We will most likely get stuck in massive traffic caused by travelers on a quest for turkey while we attempt to “commute to work” in NYC for moe.‘s two-night stand at Terminal 5 that weekend.

But hey. We do gain an extra hour in November. And I plan on using all 60 minutes of it writing!

So family, friends and followers be fair-warned: there will be no spare time this month. Only NaNo time. I’m a girl on a mission. The Program Director of NaNoWriMo advised us to shout it from the rooftops, as “the more people who know what you’re working on, the more accountable you’ll feel and the likelier you are to hit the 50,000-word goal.”

Curious to know what I’ll be working on? Stay tuned!

See Jess Type

Underwood typewriter

While on a girlfriends’ getaway weekend this summer, I stumbled across this old typewriter in a consignment shop. Tears literally came to my eyes as the memories came to mind: Countless hours were spent as a teen hammering away on my old black Underwood (which was much older and sexier than this model). You may have never seen me type, as the title reads, but you certainly could hear me through the closed bedroom door as I clack-clacked away on endless adventures starring me and my friends and a random celebrity or two. In fact, my best buds would often sit at my side as I typed, making dating requests and wardrobe choices that I would incorporate seamlessly into my tales.

Back then, inspiration was as simple as a glance stolen at a cute boy in study hall. A snatch of a song from the radio. A cruel teacher, a friend’s clever quip. Of course, nothing seemed simple at fifteen!

Even now, I find prompts for plots not all that different: a glance from a stranger on the street, a lyric lifted from iTunes, a sadistic boss, a clever quip from my kid. I guess I’m working from the same emotional center.

I sacrificed many a tree to the writing gods throughout the 1980s. I would emerge from my room triumphant; typewriter ribbon ink smeared across my face like eye black on a football player and Wite-Out on my fingernails like a bad French manicure. I had CREATED.

I recently gave one of my heroines the surname Underwood as an homage to my long-lost typewriter.  That triumphant feeling is still present as I tap-tap away on my MacBook – writing with the same effort and purpose as if I were pushing down those heavy black keys, pushing back that carriage return with a zing. I’m just much neater and quieter about it now…

I’ll Blog When I’m Dead

Are you shocked that I’ve jumped on the bandwagon (blogwagon?) and started this here page?

Me too. Seriously. I barely have time to sleep, let alone BLOG. Plus, who wants to hear my muttered musings? My cat and my kid have both learned to tune me out and I’m their meal ticket. Why would you stick around if I’m not even feeding you?

My pearls of wisdom are costume jewelry at best and I’m like a little kid playing dress-up. I write FICTION, not State of the Union.

And I’d always told myself I would wait until I actually published something to start tooting my tweeter and blowing my bloghorn about being a “writer”.

Then I figured – if the snake that escaped from the Bronx Zoo last year can have a Twitter account and amass 200,000-plus followers, I can be a novelist who blogs. That snake doesn’t even have arms to type, man. I’ve got 10 fingers, 20 minutes before the school bus arrives, and a few brain cells to spare. Watch this space!