My First Bet

Well, I’ve done something new this week: I placed my first white-collar bet.

I’m not exactly swimming in a stream of endless capital, and I’ve never even placed a bet in a casino! But after years and years of watching stocks and missing out on all the “big ones,” I jumped in.

I signed up for a RobinHood account a long time ago. 20 months ago! I’d never added money to it. I kind of just used it to watch stocks I would maybe buy if I had some money. Which is like my relationship with fashion. I LOVE fashion; I always have…since the age of 14 when I discovered ELLE magazine. I have watched my favorite designers for decades, would cry for the chance to attend fashion week in Paris, and I gawk at the real designer labels at the Saks outlet stores (which is still too rich for my blood), ahh, fashion. I really love watching fashion.

The past couple weeks or so, I’d had a list of stocks I’d been watching. They’re all based on absolutely NOTHING but me gazing into the not-post-COVID future and wondering what people will do for a lifestyle reboot or holiday shopping. Of course, Virgin Galactic had to get in my lineup, since they are not only doing rich-people-go-to-space stuff, but also reinventing the cruise experience thing.

My factors were people looking fresh for back to work (cosmetics), return to higher education (textbooks and information), and plant-based food. I didn’t include crypto because I’m still reading studies on its environmental impact relative to that of banking and other traditional financial tools, plus I think I’m late to that party.)

On this particular day, I sent my list of stocks I’ve been watching to my oldest daughter and my youngest brother. Felt more real…like I was taunting myself. Now I really had to just freakin do it.

I don’t have a lot to throw in…actually, I have no business putting any of my money in because I’m on an IRS payment plan and I should throw my little savings at that. I reasoned with myself, if I need this money in a pinch, I just sell it, right? Like, the IRS isn’t going to say, oh, you don’t have enough cash for your utility bill, let us give you $75 back so you’re not short. Love you, get us back later. No, so this money is still considered “savings.”

Out of eight stocks, my daughter and my brother, 2000 miles away from each other, independently chose THE SAME TWO. Then my daughter walked by an entire pallet of Oatly being delivered to a Starbucks, half an hour after telling me that Starbucks only orders Oatly, but also that Oatly choked when demand knocked them off their feet for a hot minute. Hmm. Then there’s the new Star Wars game coming out, yay Nintendo, so here’s to hoping that during-COVID supply chain issues don’t interfere too much!

So, I went in! I’m a high roller with my 2 shares of Oatly @$15.75 and my 1 share of Nintendo @$59.70. I know it’s not much, but remember: I have no business doing this! I have debt! This would cover three late payment fees on a credit card!! Almost.

Shortly after making my first “purchase”, aka bet, I received a New York Times notification: S&P 500 fell 1.7 percent, Wall Streets sharpest drop since mid-May. HAHAHAHAHAHA. Ok. Well, that’s fine. I know from experience (have read about this) to just hold on and weather the storm. I mean, how much could I lose? I only put in my savings: $91.20.

Kids, I’m proud to tell you that by 5:30 on the East Coast, I’d gained 86 cents. My first investing day, and I was winning. Fendi, I’ll be right there.


I went deep on my second #pitmad experience, and it was exhausting, quite frankly.

If you don’t know what #pitmad is, it’s ok. It’s niche to the publishing world.

#pitmad is a pitch event…to pitch one’s book…to an agent…to get published. IMHO, and, of course, others do have different opinions, getting one’s book published by someone other than one’s self is optimal. To do this, one must be aligned with a reputable agent.

This means somehow getting an agent’s attention and getting them excited about your writing, so they take you on as a client. This is HARD.

Google “agent rejections”, and you’ll get Stephen King, Madeleine L’Engle, James Patterson, John Grisham, even Dr. Suess! Read this link right here, cry, breathe, and come back!!

So #pitmad is one of those events, on Twitter, where agents will peek in and read the short pitches and ask a few writers for more. Writers do get agents like this. It’s cool.

But here’s the thing, there is SO MUCH for agents to sift through! This appears to be a place to look for something that might be a needle, but maybe it’s not, in several large, hashtag haystacks. If you are still not familiar with this, just look at the hashtag on Twitter.

For #pitmad, there’s a lot of helpful advice from authors and a whole community of very nice people who truly want to help each other. The most helpful advice, because it tackles a slightly different angle that most (i.e. doesn’t tell you how to write your pitch), is from . Read it. It’s about joining the writing community.

I decided to dip my toe in the waters of Mr. Roman’s advice. Then I proceeded to almost die of Twitter drowning! I mean, once you make a PACT with other writers to retweet each other, you may then relinquish your entire day. Try it, you’ll see what I mean. And PIN your pitch tweet. If you don’t, it’s nearly impossible to make good on the pact.

The tweets and retweets come fast, and there are suddenly hundreds of them in everyone’s Twitter feed. I only had 63 people on my list, and I’m glad because I felt overwhelmed! (I’ll do better next time.)

I’m still not sure about the rate of efficacy on #pitmad, but I’d love to hear from you about your experience, so please comment!

Happy Tuesday

This is my first post on this website. I’ve also posted on

Now that the internet and I have become reacquainted, and I’ve shrugged the dust off our old friendship, I’m inspired to slam the door on The-Year-Which-Must-Not-Be-Named (TYWMNBN). The WordPress template that was here before I came along suggested this, TBH, and I happen to agree.

So far, this new year has been good and interesting. Except for my neighborhood, which I walk every day.

Let’s not be boring and talk about…TYWMNBN, that’s what made watching Superbowl ads so tedious, not heartstring-tugging. We all know what TYWMNBN was like, we were all there! Let’s keep moving.

For me, the new year pretty much got some traction just this week. I finished the 837th draft of my 215,000 word novel (Kidding, 106K. Too long? Not sure. Too long.). I’ve queried just like two literary agents, with quivering hands, since I was afraid to, HAHA! I’m taking my very first commercial audition class, this week, but my experienced 16 y.o. actor does not have time to listen about how novel this is for me. She’s like, whatever. I’m with a commercial and print agency, for the first time in 25 years, which is why I’m taking the class (Full disclosure – I’m not an actor, but I’m pretending to be one.). And now I have time to make something new happen because…and this is key…all my kids can now drive.

My kids can all driiiiiiive!!!! Themselves!! Right now, my youngest is taking herself to dance team practice! Social distancing, with masks, outside, of course. If you’ve ever had to dislodge the roots holding your bootie to the driver’s seat, you understand how great this is.

I will perhaps keep this corner of the universe up to date on my querying process. I will refrain from writing about my kids’ accomplishments, but they can all tie their shoes, know their way around TikTok and Instagram filters, and they all drive. Also, if anything super interesting happens in the process of getting commercial or print jobs, I’ll share that, too, since that’s all new to me.