Saturday, September 15, 2012

Outsider syndrome

I was born in Southern California and grew up there. More specifically, I spent most of my early childhood moving all over L.A. (and Orange) County. And I have to say, the reality shows that sprang up (The Hills, Laguna Beach, etc.) long after I moved away are a far cry from my life growing up. And while I've always loved warm weather -- and spent many long summers at the beach -- I've never felt "at home" where I was born.

When I was eighteen, I moved north for college and later made my way to the Bay Area, where I worked at newspapers, both as a clerk and a reporter, and then later, in public relations. (I am exceptionally grateful to my business owner/philanthropist uncle who let me live in a spare bedroom of his crazy, sprawling, funky house for the better part of a year while I made next to no money -- particularly because it was during this time that I met my husband!)

I have great memories and enduring fondness for the Bay Area, but it only took one weekend trip to Portland, Ore., to fall in love. Now, more than six years later -- even though I love it here -- I realize I may never feel completely at home, which is something I think comes out in everything I write and every character who possesses me to write his or her words.

As a result, For Ever and its characters are products of my own outsider syndrome.

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