Item 3 – Budding Author

Life in front of the camera didn’t pan out as I envisioned. I preferred drawing and writing at the kitchen table in my Hollywood Hills home, the muse resting on my shoulder while I gazed out at the oaks and sycamores, Watson and The Kid, my two Saint Bernard puppies, dozing at at feet. My upbringing, steeped in the still glorious days of Hollywood, the Sunset Strip, confabs at the Brown Derby on Vine Street, Palm Springs and Bohemian Venice, gave my work a dreamlike optimism with an undercurrent of the seedy side of life.

mari-with-hat

My words and drawings evoke the feeling of golden light that is singular to LA, the sexy sway of palm trees when the Santa Anas blow, the intoxicating buzz in the air, the promise that all our dreams will come true. While writing my second book, VD The Love Epidemic, I volunteered at the Los Angeles Free Clinic, combining research with service to the community. I loved being useful and discovered my gift for taking technical material and making it accessible and humorous. Tapping this talent, I had the joy of illustrating over 30 books for Nolo Press.