I've done many articles over the years, including pieces for national magazines and newspapers.
Although at one point I had the home phone numbers of such celebrities as Elizabeth Taylor, Jane Fonda, Grace Jones and
Billy Idol and have interviewed famous people, I also really enjoy putting the spotlight on unknowns and jump-starting
their career or finding an excuse to research and tackle one of my own obsessions. This page will talk about only a
selection of my work:
- I interviewed the lovely actress Barbara Feldon for Filmfax. As you all know, she played Agent 99 on "Get Smart"
for many years and was a familiar face from her smoky commercials as well. Anyway, it was a long, detailed piece and
she was a delight. A little blurb about it can be found on the "Unclassified Get Smart Website." Here
is the link: http://www.ilovegetsmart.com/mag2.html And here is the excerpt:
Look Out Max! by
Donna Nowak. Filmfax Plus, April/June 2004.
Gosh, that's the second biggest Barbara Feldon
article I've ever read! This Feldon chronology is still available through Filmfax's back
|This piece involved a lot of art work.
- I did a four-year-series of interviews
with master dance teachers, which appeared in a variety of dance magazines (print and online). The dance masters interviewed
included Chris Komar; Phil Black; Jeanne Bresciani; Brenda Bufalino; Dorothy Lister; Frank Hatchett; Luigi; Bettye Morrow;
Anna Youskevitch; Mary Anthony; David Storey; and many others. For some, it was the last interview, as in the case of
Anna Youskevitch (formerly of Ballet Russes) and Chris Komar (of the Merce Cunningham company). It was a remarkable
experience and touched all areas of life, show business and movement. The original tapes and transcripts have become
a permanent part of the Dance Collection at Lincoln Center Performing Arts Library.
- I did
a very extensive Q&A with cartoonist Jerry Robinson for Amazing Heroes, their "Batman" issue. Jerry invented the Joker when he was working on the original "Batman"
comics at age 17. He has his own syndicate and has had an illustrious career. Jerry and I became friends for a
time and he gave me two original drawings he did of Ann Miller and Mickey Rooney for Playbill. Both
of these large drawings are signed by Ann Miller and Mickey Rooney (!!) and then endorsed by Jerry Robinson to me. They
are framed and hang in my bedroom at my parents' house. What a wonderful gift! The two drawings actually appear
in the heavily-illustrated piece I did called Ace of Cartoons Jerry Robinson:
The Joker Was Just the Beginning. (Actually they retitled my piece.
Didn't know they do that? Yeah, they do! Writers often aren't thrilled about it, but - eh - it's a
- I did the above piece on women in pre-code
Hollywood for Mystery Scene. Ladies They
Talk About helped get me active membership status at Mystery Writers of America, a wonderful organization for mystery
writers. Above is a photo of Clara Bow, Hollywood's "It" girl who also played naughty, not just nice, onscreen.
Naturally, I worked Joan Crawford into the piece and featured a gorgeous photo of her from "Letty Lynton." (See below).
- On another "ladies" note, I covered the
sexy sirens of Hammer horror films in Ladies with Teeth - The Heroines of Hammer
which included an interview with the late and great horror goddess, Ingrid Pitt. Has a sexier vampiress ever graced
the golden screen than Ingrid Pitt? Not to mention her work in "When Eagles Dare." (You're missed, Ingrid!)
folks, since I enjoy a small but wonderful collection of original composition Shirley Temple dolls, I managed to write about
the Shirley Temple doll, those "beacons of cheer," in Grit with Shirley Temple Doll Mania. Various collectors were proud
to feature their "girls" in my piece! My own "girls" were in a snit that they didn't make the
cut. I had to lock the china closet so they couldn't create mayhem in my apartment while I was out. Kids,
it was only because I didn't have a digital camera at the time. My dolls are beautiful and would've deserved
the exposure. Heigh-ho, as Emma Peel might say.
- I also did an online travel piece about San Francisco,
which includes my own photographs:
San Francisco, Open Your Golden Gates
did extensive articles on both clowning (Clowns) and vaudeville (Playing to the Haircuts) for Dramatics Magazine. Playing to the Haircuts is also a permanent part of an educational website.
interviewed the marvelous Charles Busch for The Guide to the Gay Northeast (Charles Busch is the Lady in Question). What a wonderful man - made the world a happier place, in my book. Mr. Busch
also kindly wrote an endorsement for my book, Just Joan: A Joan Crawford Appreciation. On the same note, I did a piece on Ruby Rims for
The New York
Native (Ten Years of Ruby Tuesdays). That was one of my first "commercial"
pieces, in fact.
|First page of piece I did on the Rockettes, helping career of young Rockette Stephanie Chase.
- I interviewed Donald and Renee Paley Bain, co-authors of Murder, She Wrote, for The Strand Magazine (Murder,
They Wrote) and these
interviews are running in the members' bulletin of Mystery Writers of America. Also did an interview with groupie
Pamela Des Barres for Penthouse (Teen Angel),
using the speaker phone at an ad agency and their dime!
high school, I began doing articles for my hometown paper, The Moorestown Observer, and quickly had my own column
and cartoon strip! Doing the cartoon strip was loads of work, but fun! It gave me a taste of what it was like
to produce on demand -- and, trust me, it meant giving up part of my social life!
|A piece I did on a promising young Joffrey dancer while writing for town paper.