Occupation: Screenwriter and producer
Hometown: Dardanelle, Arkansas but grew up in Scottsville Arkansas.
Family: Race (life partner) Chace, oldest son, lives in Fayetteville and is Chef de Partie at CO-OP Ramen in Bentonville, which I highly recommend. Zac, youngest son, lives here part of the time, works six months at Denali National Park, and travels the world in between. Chace and Zac have way more stamps in their passports than I do.
1) What is your favorite book and why?
Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry. Most people just think of it as the mini-series. Read the book, or any book by him.
Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. This one I have underlined so many times, and written in the margins of so many pages, I probably need a new copy. I also give this book out to people who are trying to figure their lives out. It is amazing.
The Art of War by Sun Tzu. I have worn out my copy of this as well.
Every single lesson in life are in Lonesome Dove, Shantaram, and The Art of War.
2) Dog or cat? Why?
Dog. I have a lurking black cat named Luna, but cats don’t really belong to anyone. My dogs… they are family.
3) What do you think is the most positive aspect of living in the River Valley?
The scenery. I grew up on Piney and the Illinois Bayou. Give me a creek and some mountains and I am in my element. If they ever try and dam the bayou I will be chained to a tree and will probably be in jail for protesting.
4) What’s something no one would ever guess about you?
Since April 26, 2019, I have been battling breast cancer and had a double mastectomy without reconstruction. It’s called going flat — Ha! I call it saving my life. Most women freak out at that, but you are so much more than your body. I feel more empowered and look at my scars as battle scars that I won a war on.
5) What is your favorite music genre and artist? Why?
I listen to everything. My fave singers of all time are Robert Plant and Prince. Plant’s voice is ethereal and Prince is just a musical genius. His acoustic stuff is amazing. I just started listening to Holly Williams, Hank Jr’s daughter. Holy Hell! Her rendition of I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry gives me chills. Zac turned me on to Tyler Childers who I am loving. I am also a huge rap fan. It’s poetry and storytelling and I always have some blasting in house at some point during the day.
6) What do you nerd out on?
Star Wars always. I love documentaries. Ken Burns is a genius. I binge watched The Witcher and its really good. So disappointed in how Game of Thrones ended I can’t even talk about it. Ancient Aliens has changed my whole perspective on things. I listen to a lot of podcasts. Sasquatch Chronicles and Your Favorite Band Sucks are two of my faves.
7) If you could change one thing about the River Valley, what would it be?
A community is like water — we either keep flowing or become stagnant. If the churches don’t step out of the government, it is going to be the dark ages around here pretty soon. Don’t like casinos? Don’t go. Don’t believe in drinking? Stay out of the restaurants that serve alcohol. Good grief it is 2020. And all the hate now. Just stop hating people. Everybody Love Everybody.
8) Where is the one location in the River Valley you would tell a first-time visitor that they must go?
I live at the foot of Mt. Nebo, so always that. My hidden gem I escape to is Bayou Bluff. In the summer I will just take an inner tube and float around. It clears my mind. In the fall, you can’t beat it for the colors reflecting on the creek.
9) Pizza, tacos, cheeseburger, or fried chicken? Any particular reason why?
Can I say none of the above? My go-to is Quiznos — classic Italian on rosemary. Robert just starts making that when I walk up to the counter. For something more, I will make the drive to Altus for a Wiederkeher Weinkeller filet mignon.
10) What is your favorite quote? Could be from an inspirational person, could be an original.
“What do we say to the god of death? Not today.” I had that written on my mirror during chemo. I am about to get it as a tattoo. “Walk in like you own the place.” My dad told me that one at a very young age. It’s a good piece of advice.