I have been writing almost continuously since I was 14 years old—and submitting my work for
publications for nearly all of that time. I sent Evergreen Review my first submission in (best guess)
1964. Editor, Barney Rosset, attached a brief handwritten note to the rejection slip encouraging me to
continue writing. Quite possibly there was not a person on earth who needed that encouragement
less. Forty-four years later, after discovering Evergreen Review on the internet, I sent them some
work which, Editor-in-Chief, Barney Rosset accepted immediately. So, now, my work is in there
amongst writers like; Samuel Beckett, Norman Mailer, Henry Miller, LeRoi Jones, Susan Sontag, and
Edward Albee. My worry now is that if it’s another 44 years before I see print again, I'll be 110, and
most likely will have lost all interest in anything that isn't called chocolate pudding. Meanwhile, I
publish my work on EstuaryPublications.com
Thirty-some years ago I wrote seven full-length plays and, even after all these years, I strongly
believe that any one of those plays, properly folded, might still make an excellent doorstop.
In 1980 however, Magic Theatre, Eureka Theatre, and another local (San Francisco) theatre which I
cannot, for the life of me, recall, thought much more of my work. The Assistant Artistic Director at
Magic called me to tell me, somewhat breathlessly: “I probably shouldn’t tell you this, but… John Lion
has everything you’ve sent us on his desk, AND he has instructed us that anything else you submit
should be brought directly to him.” She continued, “The last time Mr. Lion had more than one play on
his desk from one playwright, it was Sam Shepard!”
Meanwhile, the Artistic Director at Eureka, called me and invited me over. Three people met with me,
saying among other things, “Any actor would be eager to sink his teeth into any of your characters.”
From that alone I realized that these people knew more about my plays than I did. Despite all that
enthusiasm, Eureka did not produce any of my work.
That same year, Mr. Lion entered my play, “An Appeal for Shorter Doors”, into the highly-respected
FDG/CBS competition. Selected theatres were allowed to enter one play in that contest. Magic
Theatre received over 1600 submissions for that competition; I didn’t even know it existed. Ultimately,
Shorter Doors was one of the top 25 plays, out of (I forget) 17,000 or 27,000 entries. That play,
however, was never produced.
Encouraged by Mr. Lion’s somewhat peculiar, unspoken support, I sent that play off to two additional
competitions: Louisville and The Eugene O’Neill Theatre. It did not place in either competition.
However, one of the judges from Eugene O’Neill sent me a lengthy, hand-written letter saying, “I think
the other judges are wrong. I think this is a remarkable first piece and it should have been staged by
us. I really regret my inability to represent your play better. Please continue writing and please
continue sending your ms to Eugene O’Neill.” After one full year of hearing nothing whatsoever from
Magic, I received all of my plays back, in the mail, without comment.
I don't write plays any more.
In 1998 BILLBOARD BOOKS (the most widely recognized and greatly respected name in the Music
Industry) published my book—STUDIO BASICS, What You Should Know BEFORE Entering the
Recording Studio… just in time for the digital explosion to render most of the tech. advice in that book
completely and utterly useless.
I no longer write about the music industry.
These days, I write for myself.