WHAT’S NEXT? How Adversity has Changed My Life By Nancy Cole Silverman

I started writing the Carol Childs Mysteries when I was bucked out of my previous life. That’s right, bucked. If I substituted the B in that word for another more suitable letter – namely the letter F – you may have a more accurate description of how I felt.

Yes, I was #%-ucked!

You see after a long career in radio, I had launched The Equestrian News, a southern California newspaper I founded for the horsey-set. At the time, I thought I was literally in my heyday. Pun intended. I was like a little kid at the barn. I was there every day, and when I wasn’t at the stable I was having so much fun writing and reporting on horse shows and the like, that I never dreamed I would one day want to be doing anything else.

That is, until the day my horse spooked and my world changed.

My bulletproof horse, who I thought would never do such a thing, was frightened by a tractor. No doubt he thought it was a dinosaur, and he took off with me. And when the horse you’re riding is better than seventeen hands I can tell you that’s scary. To make a long story short: He ran. I held on. He stopped. I didn’t. I ended up going over his head and nearly breaking my neck and losing my hand. Fortunately I didn’t, but two surgeries later, and after a year of very painful rehabilitation – not to mention being told by the doc I couldn’t ride again – I found myself staring at a computer keyboard and wondering, so what’s next?

Prior to my accident, I had spent nearly twenty-five years working for news and talk radio stations. I had done everything from commercial copywriting to news, and because I was always one of those lean-in type of gals, I retired as the general manager of a sports talk radio station here in Los Angeles. At the time, there were only two female general managers in the market. Some might say it was a feather in my cap. I like to say, it’s proof that God has a sense of humor.

So that’s my background. And as I stared at the keyboard, I knew one thing. Writers write what they know and nobody knew the inner workings of a radio station like I did. The stories behind the mic? The personalities? The political workings of a station? I could have fun with that. Plus, I didn’t think it was very likely I’d get bucked off my desk chair, and that had a lot of appeal.

What I wanted more than anything was to create a different type of female protagonists, one that was more brain than brawn and who believed a microphone was more powerful than a forty-five.

Thus, Carol Childs, a thirty-nine-year-old, single working mother of two, was born. At least on the page, and along with her boss, Tyler Hunt, a twenty-one-year-old whiz kid who considers her the World’s Oldest Cub Reporter, I had a built-in conflict. Something I felt most women could relate to.

How about you? What experiences have you had that lead you to where you are today and influenced your writing?

Nancy Cole Silverman

Nancy Cole Silverman credits her twenty-five years in news and talk radio for helping her to develop an ear for storytelling. But it wasn’t until 2001 after she retired from news and copywriting that she was able to sit down and write fiction fulltime. Much of what Silverman writes about today she admits is pulled from events that were reported on from inside some of Los Angeles’ busiest newsrooms where she spent the bulk of her career. In the last ten years she has written numerous short stories and novelettes.

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5 thoughts on “WHAT’S NEXT? How Adversity has Changed My Life By Nancy Cole Silverman

  1. Trish Jackson

    Nancy, I love to hear peoples’ personal stories about why they started writing and this one didn’t disappoint. It made me think back to the times my enormous, crazy and powerful horse, Caesar used to run away with me and the only way I could stop him was to turn in concentric circles, which often led to him slipping in the mud and falling. I know I was incredibly blessed not to be severely injured, and your story made me wonder how it would have changed my life.
    Love the characters and look forward to reading your books.

    Reply
  2. Cynthia B Ainsworthe

    Nancy, I thoroughly enjoyed reading what spurred you into writing. Your story is facinating and demonstrates your inner strength and determination to carry on. I’m so sorry that you suffered that accident and needed surgeries. The bright side is, the world has another talented author.

    Reply
  3. John B. Rosenman

    Nancy, love your account. It just goes to show that when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. I’m sorry your horse f . . . uh, bucked you off, and for your surgeries. I don’t want to get biblical, but it may have been partly a fortunate fall since it led you to write this series and, uh, make hay out of your professional experience.

    Reply
  4. James L. Secor

    An experience that changed my life and what I’ve done with it. . .perhaps the D in genetics that sent me galloping from pre-med to theatre and since then it’s all been downhill. The physical battles never stopped the theatre and literary spelunking, though they have limited my enjoyment of physically exuberant pastimes. The only horsey story is that the horse did not throw me; the girl did.

    Reply
  5. Micki Peluso

    Nancy, I enjoyed reading of your exciting trail blazing venture into radio. Sorry about the accident but you did survive and go on to a new and different career which may prove to take you to even higher places. Thanks for sharing a good read.

    Reply

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