14 Things I learned at the 2012 Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop

Here are 14 things I learned at the 2012 Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop

I attended the 2012 Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop, and I learned a lot of important things there, for example how to get my mommy blog up and running. I’m kidding. I don’t have a mommy blog. Men can’t have babies. If they could, the workshop’s attendees wouldn’t have been mostly women. They would have all been men, because if men had had to undergo childbirth you better believe we’d blog the hell out of it. Facebook would have been invented 70 years ago. The Internet wasn’t around then, you say? It would have been. We’d have put some guys on it.

The two-day workshop at the University of Dayton had a lot to offer. The speakers were excellent. The sessions were enlightening. The attendees were inspirational and funny. There was a well-endowed mascot bird. I came home with a notebook full of thoughts and ideas and some pornographic bird photos.

Because I’m the kind of guy who forgets things unless I write them down, I wrote down all of the most important things I learned at the 2012 Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop.

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I went to the Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop and ate dinner with this bird

I met a lot of great people a the Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop last weekend, but none as memorable as E.B. Heron, the fabled bird mascot of the infamous Humor Writers group. I ate dinner with E.B. I rode the bus with E.B. I even saw E.B. over at the bar. He was a great companion.

But ladies, can we get him some pants for next time?


Wine saves marriages and vice-versa

Read the true, funny story of what actually happens when you go wine tasting in California

(Editor’s note: This was my submission for the 2012 Erma Bombeck Writing Competition, which I did not win. The requirements were that it be fewer than 450 words and be written in the spirit of Erma.)

Being married in Los Angeles severely limits your fun. With one “I do” you go from partying all night with actors and rock stars to bickering with your spouse over who’s taking up all the space on the DVR.

But Californians are nothing if not creative and the married ones have found a way to beat the doldrums.

We go wine tasting. A lot.

Your average wine tasting goes like this. You drive to a part of the state that is so far from Los Angeles that it’s represented by a Republican. Usually it’s called something like San Montaña Valley. Just outside town, every mile or so, are wineries.

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2012 Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop

The following was completely stolen from humorwriters.org:

The next Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop will be April 19-21, 2012, on the campus of the University of Dayton, Erma Bombeck’s alma mater. Registration will open Dec. 6, 2011, at noon.

The Bombeck Workshop is the only one in the country devoted to both humor and human interest writing. Through the workshop, the University of Dayton and the Bombeck family honor one of America’s most celebrated storytellers and humorists.  Over the past decade, the workshop has attracted such household names as Dave Barry, Phil Donahue, Art Buchwald, Nancy Cartwright, Don Novello, Garrison Keillor and Gail Collins.

The workshop begins on a Thursday evening and continues through Saturday evening, ending with an attendee stand-up show. It features more than two dozen professional humor and human interest writers on it faculty, offering sessions on the craft of writing, turning an interest into a profession, marketing, publishing and more. We also offer breakfast roundtables and plenty of other opportunities for comparing notes and networking. The atmosphere is very supportive to both new and established writers looking for the kind of inspiration Erma received from UD professor Brother Tom Price: “You can write!”

And you’re guaranteed to laugh. A lot.

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