Frequently Asked Questions

    1. You look exotic, what is your background?

      Second most common question asked in clinical settings (after “How are you?”).  This used to be a favourite topic when I worked at Grady Memorial Hospital.  My father is Italian and Austro-Hungarian.  My mother is Italian and Afro-Surinamese.  Yes, I am multiracial.  No, I do not get benefits for it.

    2. How were you raised?

      I was raised by the Afro-Surinamese side who immigrated in the  1930s.  My family spoke Surinamese Dutch as a home language.  I do not.  Suriname is culturally Caribbean with random bits of Dutch culture but are yet somewhat different.  For example, I grew up with Black Peter (Zwarte Piet) leaving candy in my shoes, but he was described as being black due to soot and dirt because he was a chimney sweep not because he was a slave.  (This version is now catching on in the Netherlands as Roetveegpiet / Sooty Peter).

    3. Why so many degrees?

      I really like reading and learning. I’ve never met a subject that I didn’t like to study (exceptions being Russian and Calculus).  I figure I am making up for all lack of educational opportunities afforded to my relatives.

    4. Why have you had so many different careers?

      The short answer is : Discrimination.
      The long answer is that’s how it ended up.
      I started in the entertainment industry as a child.  My family worked in the industry and the industry is relatively non-judgmental.  Back then it was the only industry open to gender non-conforming young girls, so I have done this my entire life.  I’ve been doing it so long that I don’t even register it as work given I grew up in a television station which was also my father’s job as well as his hobby. My mother’s job was radio/television and her hobby was theater.  It’s not work, it’s home.
      I wanted to be a scientist, but while I was able to obtain the BS and MS degrees, I was unable to secure a science position because I was a woman.  I eventually transitioned and was blacklisted because now I was transsexual.  (In irony, there was a huge push to hire women after I transitioned.)
      I have mostly been freelancing and self employed because discrimination is real so I take whatever I can get, whenever I can get.  Sometimes that means I work 100+ hour weeks not including commuting time.  I’ve been at various times a researcher, various jobs in the entertainment industry, EMT, and even a DEI consultant.  I’ve been able to obtain more work as a clinician, but I suffered a serious injury making it harder to do EMS.

    5. What did you want to do career-wise as a child?

      I wanted to work for NASA. Very strong interest in astronomy and astrobiology. Still have that interest.

    6. You do a lot, what is the secret to your productivity?  Do you sleep?

      I sleep 9-10 hours most of the time.  If you don’t sleep and you will burn out.  I used to be a human performance consultant so believe me when I say a huge key to productivity is to sleep right, eat right, and remove distractions.  I didn’t have or watch TV for 5+ years.  That included no streaming services and no YouTube.  I still rarely watch it with the exception of new episodes of Star Trek…. ok I like the Try Channel too.  I also like using Habitica and Airtable.  I also set S.M.A.R.T. goals and am great at time management.

    7. Can I hire you for public speaking/stage management/production/acting/research/consulting/etc.?

      Send me a message.  Please include expected start date/end date (if applicable) and rates if you have them.  For therapy/life coaching/hypnosis, please book an appointment at After Hours Hypnotherapy.

Book Specific
    1. Why is it called “Leaving Bacon Behind”?

      Very easy. I don’t eat pork. I stopped eating pork before I decided I wanted to become Jewish. It made sharing with my Jewish boyfriend easier.  A lot of Reform Jews be somewhat offended at the title.  Orthodox haven’t said a thing.

    2. How long did it take you to write “Leaving Bacon Behind”?

      Actually the very very first draft was from National Novel Writing Month 2012.  It wasn’t a particularly good draft but the framework was there.  It took another three drafts before I took a several year break.  Then it was accepted by a publisher, who went bankrupt.  Another publisher accepted it and ghosted me.  Then I accidentally got Manhattan Book Group interested even though I was pitching another book which they weren’t interested in, but they asked if I had anything else so I pitched another book which was half written which they put on hold, and I told them the only thing done was a book they probably wouldn’t be interested in… the next day, they contacted me back saying they were interested.

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