For Margot

My friend Margot lost her fight to breast cancer last weekend.

We weren’t currently in touch, and I won’t claim we were best friends, but Margot was one of those souls who made an impact on people. I am no exception. The last time I heard from her was in December. The cancer was in remission, and she was hopeful and happy. She was going back to school.

Then early last week, I noticed her friends [...] Continue Reading…

On Celebrating Progress

This is not what my backyard looks like.


A couple weeks ago, I surveyed the backyard, notepad in hand. I had written a list of 27 things that needed to get done in and outside the house, and I was adding more.


I felt myself getting angry. I have this vision of how I want our yard to look, but right now it’s all dead grass and [...] Continue Reading…

Magical Moments on a Park Swing, or Why My Memoir is a Coming-of-age Story

Do you remember adolescence?

You remember the angst, probably. You remember the awkwardness, the unrequited love, the rage you felt toward your parents, the acne.

But do you remember those crazy beautiful moments? How all it took to feel like you were at the edge of the world was the right song on the radio, your foot on the gas and your hand out the window? How all the powerlessness you felt day-to-day melted away and all [...] Continue Reading…

“I Need You To Believe Me”

I had to apologize for something this weekend, and I HATE apologizing. Probably not much more than you do, but maybe a tiny bit more. I really, really enjoy being right. Getting to say the words “I told you so” (or even more satisfying, implying the words with tone and a sigh) fill my heart with immense glee.

But you know what? I’m a jerk sometimes*, probably not much more than you, but maybe a tiny [...] Continue Reading…

Dear Artists, Today is Not the Day to Quit

A little more than two years ago, I began writing my first book. It started with a single Word doc titled “Book” that I’d type notes in on the weekends. I’ve wanted to write books since I was old enough to staple lined paper together. I’d fill those pages with stories about my stuffed cow and write BY CARLY ANN WHEELEHAN on the front.

My parents did that thing where they told me I could [...] Continue Reading…