Carolyn Holm
Author of Flamingo Moon, a novel

About Carolyn...

Recently I had to write a short, one phrase description of myself for a website profile; I came up with Writer, Artist, Mother.  I rather like that, it's apt.  But that's the short version, and this page is all about me, so if you are interested in more, read on.
     I live in Berkeley, across the Bay from San Francisco, with my husband, two cats, and a dog.  Until recently I also had several cheerful hens.  My chickens probably had something to do with the fact that I am a third generation Petaluman.  Petaluma is a town in Sonoma County north of San Francisco, originally known as The Chicken Capital of the World.  How's that for an origin story?  I spent my first four years living across the street from a chick hatchery, and at the age of eight I was the proud owner of a chicken costume that I actually wore on public TV (shout out here to Dick Ford Dance Studio).

     Though a Northern Californian to the core, I have a special place in my heart for Los Angeles, so it's not surprising that Flamingo Moon takes place in Silver Lake (or Silverlake as the old-timers insist) in East Los Angeles.  I headed south to attend Scripps College in Claremont, which I selected because of its remarkable Humanities program, the fact that it is a women's college, and not least because it is five hundred miles from Petaluma (which seemed important at the time).  But Scripps is not my only link to Los Angeles.  I have a daughter who lives there with my grand-puppy, so I frequently make the long drive down Interstate 5 (aka The 5) to visit them.

     I try to pass along some of what I have learned about writing by volunteering in the local public high school as a writing tutor.  I tell the kids that most of what I know about writing I learned by being a voracious reader, and that a good way to edit what they've written is to read it aloud.  They don't generally believe the latter until they have humored me by reading their work aloud to me, and find themselves stumbling over the awkward bits.  This volunteering is serious work, but I try to maintain a sense of humor while I go about it.

     In addition to writing I have an art side.  For years my day job was to work as a copy writer and graphic designer.  I have been known to create collage and assemblage art including a piece that was featured one year on the cover of the Richmond Art Center's calendar, providing me with my fifteen minutes of fame. I teach children's art classes, and wrote and illustrated Everyday Art for Kids, a book for parents and teachers, that I'm proud to say won a Parent's Guide to Children's Media award, and sadly is now out of print.

     So basically things are good.  Somehow all the rough edges of my life as it evolved over the years have smoothed out into this wonderful existence.  I feel so very fortunate.  If writers are supposed to be tortured souls, I've done something very, very wrong.