I was born in Chicago in 1965. I’m told it was a hot night. At eighteen, I enlisted
in the Air National Guard as an aircraft mechanic. My squadron flew the KC-135, a
tanker with a worldwide mission. The wanderlust began. So did a military scholarship.
In college, I did a lot of reading, a little writing, and too much drinking. I got
a “C” in Creative Fiction.
Freshly minted a second lieutenant, I attended Air Force pilot training. The Air
Force and I had some disagreements about how to operate their jets, after which they
invited me to seek my future in another field. That was humbling. Very humbling.
Next came three years in criminal justice dealing with juvenile offenders and their
far guiltier parents. I saw some bad things out there. Flying began to look pretty
Three airlines, seventeen years, and ten thousand weather delays later it’s a career.
They even call me “Captain” now. This, too, is very humbling—but in a much better
way. Aviation has taken me from Chicago to San Juan, Miami, New York, Palm Springs,
and now the California coast. Access to free air travel has taken me even farther.
Over the years, I’ve checked off some widely spaced points on the charts, exploring
ancient ruins, munching on grasshoppers, and bending elbows in dusky watering holes
with the kinds of people that Tom Waits sings about. Ideas formed along the way.
I began to write again.
Palm Springs, a desert oasis, was the perfect hideaway to create One For Our Baby,
but I needed a new experience after that. When I heard the song of the Sirens in
the thundering Pacific surf I answered the call, buying a sailboat and taking to
the sea in search of them. Some days I sail. Some days I scour the secluded coves
for their mistresses. Some days I just sit below deck and write. I’m expecting a
mermaid sighting—or another novel—in the not too distant future.