Three weeks out of college, I went to work for The New York Times. Four books and countless magazine and radio essays later, the lessons learned at that great newspaper – getting it right and making it short – inform every piece I write. My most recent book, The Memoir Project, A Thoroughly Non-Standardized Text on Writing & Life, came out with Grand Central Publishing in 2011.

For fifteen years I’ve taught what I call Writing What You Know, since that’s what memoir requires; it’s as simple – and as complicated – as that.

Most of my work includes a large helping of memoir, including my books The Roots of Desire: The Myth, Meaning and Sexual Power of Red Hair, (Bloomsbury, 2005) and Another Name for Madness, (Houghton Mifflin, 1985) and my commentaries for National Public Radio’s All Things Considered. I have written for The New York Times Magazine, Prevention, Vogue, Good Housekeeping, The Los Angeles Times, and elsewhere.

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