In Step Lively: New York City Tales of Love and Change, I wanted to paint a picture of New York City back in the late 70’s and early 80’s, a time still so engraved in my memory. Against the backdrop of Manhattan, a young married couple, fresh arrivals to the city, embark on new careers and a new life together, while they try unsuccessfully to resolve their conflicts and make their marriage work.
Some of the “tales” I wrote as early as 1983 before I left New York to move to Athens Greece, but most of them were written in the years since then. As a memoir, although fictionalized, I find that the latter-written tales let me move back to see the conflicts a little more clearly, giving me some distance for a wider shot.
Ever since I took journalism in high school, I have been one with a notebook and pen in hand, recording an overheard dialogue here, a description of a scene or character there, ready to use in an essay, story or poem.
I’ve often wondered about this compulsive need to record events and conversations from my life in little and large notebooks alike. Joan Didion describes this “compulsion” in her essay “On Keeping a notebook” as “inexplicable to those who do not share it.”
On my road to being a journalist, my first job out of college was in writing Better Business Bureau consumer columns syndicated around the U.S. I became an expert in buying a turkey, wines, biodegradable detergents, you name it. But as life always leads us on detours and unexpected turns, I embraced a career in teaching the English language and literature in Greece. Along the way, I’ve published work in magazines and lately, a collection of poems, “Wanderings: Poems of Discovery.”
My husband and I are contented retirees, lucky that we can travel, visiting our daughter in Brooklyn, our son in Madrid, and other destinations, but mostly finding inspiration in life right where we are in Athens, where I enjoy publishing a monthly travel/culture blog.