Unlike Nora Ephron, Maya Angelou and I have nothing in common. When I read I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, it did not offer me identification as Heartburn had, it offered me access -- vivid, scary, and profound access -- to a place I had never been before.
Today is the 9th anniversary of the launch of The Huffington Post. There is so much to celebrate, so much that has exceeded my wildest dreams -- no, back in 2005, I wasn't dreaming of more than 90 million unique visitors a month, more than 60 verticals, more than 50,000 bloggers, more than 300 million comments, or double-digit international editions, a game-changing live streaming network, and a wall-full of awards. Looking back, however, there are a number of things that I know now that I wish I'd known then. To mark our 9th anniversary, here are 9 of them...
Thank God for Nora Ephron. Before she came along, the primary role model for a smart, wise-cracking female writer was Dorothy Parker, known both her sharp wit and her unenviable life. (After too much drinking and too many bad relationships; she died a famous but unhappy woman.)
Has the entertainment industry given up on the romance of Manhattan? Did it flee the country with Woody or migrate to Brooklyn with Lena Dunham? Are we destined to be portrayed as an urban wild west, ducking gunfire instead of drinking Cosmos?
"What do you write about?" I'm often asked. The answer, um, is I, uh, write about myself, which automatically puts me in the company of Kim Kardashian, Paris Hilton, and others who exude the belief that their lives are of inherent interest to others.
It's one thing to meet a great artist. I've been lucky enough to meet, and interview, quite a few considerable artists, and a handful I would probably describe as great. But it doesn't happen all that often in a life that you meet a great human being.
One 16 year old and a set of twins coming up fast on their 13th birthday: They want freedom, they earn some money and they don't want to be with me all the time. I'm on the back nine of my kids being kids.
I should be living in the real world of romance after divorce, where relationships irreparably fall apart and loving someone new isn't such a sure thing. Watching these movies has become such a part of my past at this point, clinging to them now feels a bit desperate.
I noticed all the spines of books littering my bedside table. It was as if my subconscious had been amassing the required reading list for "Marriage in your 40s."
Humor is gentle on our hearts. Nora Ephron was a pro at this. She raised us up on a magic carpet for our souls to journey through tears and laughter. Nora elevated our perspective by lifting up our broken hearts to a place where we could be heroes.
At the time, I was smack dab in the middle of that big chunk. I wasn't Jenny, preschool teacher. Or Jenny, mother of four. I was Jenny, who was divorced.
If you had told me when I was 25 that at 50 I would be divorced and raising a daughter on my own I would have looked at you like you were nuts.
Glancing at the shows nominated for Best Musical for this year's Tony Awards, it is easy to mistake the list as being a Hollywood box office report.
Courtney P. Vance couldn't get over it. He was presenting a Theatre World Award to Tom Hanks, not only a two-time Oscar winner and beloved star of man...
So, how did I get the best seat in the house, an upper box hanging over the front of the stage? Just lucky, I guess.
To honor female filmmakers everywhere who are slowly but surely carving out a name for themselves in the film world, here's a list of the top 10 female directors who refuse to believe Hollywood is a man's world.