Talk to Me

I’m a Chicago guy who doesn’t live  in Chicago anymore. I grew up on the North Side of the city and rooted for the baseball team that plays on the South Side. Life is full of contradictions.

I’ve always been a reader, and that led me to become a writer. My dad used to tell me bedtime stories when I was little. He didn’t read books to me; he just spun the stories out of thin air. Talk about a lifetime influence. My mom was my first editor. When I was in the fourth grade, I wrote a school paper about our family dog. Mom read it and said, “Try to be a little more imaginative in your writing,” I’ve done my best to follow that guideline ever since.

I got my first writing job at a big Chicago ad agency. I also toiled in the ad mines of Honolulu and Los Angeles. I wrote a bunch of screenplays in L.A. and had one of them optioned by 20th Century Fox. I also wrote my first published novel in the City of Angels. Moving back to the Midwest, I got my first hardcover novel deal — writing two titles for Bantam Books.

Now, my wife and I are the co-publishers of Stray Dog Press, Inc. We have 30+ titles on Amazon and the plan is to keep writing and publishing until my well of imagination runs dry. That doesn’t look to happen anytime soon.

— Joe

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