Monday, January 20, 2020

Love


We just dropped off Sam for her final semester of college. 

Love is the most important thing you will ever do. It’s more important than where you work, how much money you make, or what you accomplish.

Love is about what you’ve given to others to make their own lives happier and more meaningful. Just like your parents did for you, and your grandparents did for them.

The fundamental need we all have, beyond food and shelter, is love. It’s the fuel that sustains us through difficult times.

We should spend time every day thinking about the people who have loved us the most. Then we should spend even more time every day trying to be a person who has loved someone else the most.

That has always been my goal with Sam and Ethan. Now it is also my goal with Jo.

Monday, January 13, 2020

Naughty Ninja launch party

We had a launch party over the weekend at Books of Wonder on the Upper West Side. My editor, Kelsey Skea, was there, plus several friends and neighbors. Books of Wonder was great in setting up and promoting the event. 

And of course, Jo is the greatest--she even wore her pearls :)

Some pics:








Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Starting a new decade

2010 was a long time ago. Which bodes well, because with time rushing by so quickly these days, I need to feel that 2030 is a long ways off.

In the past ten years I had seven children's books published, with four more in the pipeline. That would've amazed me to know that ten years ago. I would've thought, "Wow, I must be so rich now."




I married a wonderful woman who gave me a second chance at life and love. That would've confused the hell out of me to know that ten years ago. But I feel very blessed, given the range of alternative ways things could've gone. It was touch-and-go there for a while. I will never take love for granted.



I watched my two wonderful kids blossom into young adults. That would've made me feel very proud to know that ten years ago--and also make me breathe a sigh of relief. You just want them to turn out okay. You don't want to feel like you screwed them up too badly. Check.




I have mixed feelings about my media career over the past ten years. I could've done a better job at that. I could've risen higher, made more money, found more career satisfaction. Somewhere along the way--in fact, probably about ten years ago--it morphed from being a core part of my identity to just the way I pay the bills. 

That's probably fine, other than having an embarrassingly poor retirement portfolio. Many of my job experiences over the past ten years make for fun cocktail party conversation ("Did I ever tell you about the time I worked for the crazy Cayman hedge-fund guy?" "Did I ever tell you about the time I ran Essence.com?"). 



But I never had the urge to run into the streets and whoop about it. I often have that urge as a children's author. And a husband. And a dad.

Finally, I should disclose that my running pace has declined markedly over the past decade. And my feet hurt when I stand up and try to answer the doorbell. But I'm not trying to make the Olympic team, so no complaints.



Given all the possible outcomes over the past ten years, I'm happy enough with this particular version of the space-time continuum. 

So bring on the '20s!




Monday, December 23, 2019

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Visit from mom and dad

We drove up to Trinity College to visit Sam. We saw "Hamilton" (from perhaps the highest seats I have ever been in in a theater). My dad fixed the chimes in our antique wall clock. We ate BBQ. We just hung out. 

It was a short visit, but it was just enough time to remind me that they are great.

I won't provide a full itemized list of why, but the short list would include being unconditionally loving, being great role models for a successful marriage, and genuinely caring about other people and the world. 






Sunday, December 1, 2019

We're #1


As I'm about to go to bed, Naughty Ninja Takes a Bath is the #1 children's book in the entire country on Amazon, in its first day. This is not so much an indicator that NN is destined to be a classic, but that Amazon First Reads is an effective marketing program. 

But it's like if you beat the defending NCAA wrestling champ on a locked hands penalty point. You're not going to complain about it.

And so it is.

An excellent day.