As I sit here and ponder the accomplishments of my daily life – shaking crumbs off place mats, closing cereal box flaps when others fail to do so, changing font colors on my blog – it’s hard to believe I’ve known the creator of The Big Bang Theory’s dad, Norman Prady, for over ten years.
I met Norm when I signed up for a community education writing class, held evenings at the local high school.
He quickly sensed a few of us were diehard writer-types, and shortly after moved the class to his house, where he gave us a name: The Oxford Writers Group.
Makes us sound erudite. Maybe we are.
Anyway. Every Thursday, in sessions that last for six weeks three times a year, Norm feeds us pizza and pop (and little chocolates which I steal when he’s not looking) while we sit around his kitchen table and talk shop.
“Adverbs aren’t your friends,” he’ll say.
Or: “Write about the eraser at the tip of the pencil, not the whole pencil.” Which helps focus our writing so it’s not all confusing and saying so much it doesn’t say anything at all.
And, his usual: “If you want your writing to engage the reader, you have to stand naked on the street corner.” Figuratively, of course; I mean, he’s not a cult leader who tells us to get naked. It’s important that we reveal ourselves in our work. So says Norm.
It’s hard not to believe him when he raised a son, Bill Prady, who is a successful Hollywood writer who has written for The Muppets, Dharma and Greg, The Gilmore Girls, and who is currently writer/producer/director of The Big Bang Theory, Thursday nights on CBS at 8:00pm. *plug plug*
Have I name-dropped enough?
A couple of years ago, I used this association to try and entice new writers into our group. Because even though we had four stalwart members besides Norm, we had room at the table for more.
“Hey, my writing group is looking to add another member or two. It’s run by Norm Prady, whose son writes, produces and directs The Big Bang Theory,” I said breathlessly to another writing group I belonged to.
But nope, no takers. Oh, maybe there was a bit of chatter, a slight interest in joining. But everyone was either already too busy or scared or had one excuse after another and blah blah blah blah blah.
Then there was this charming little sales pitch when I tried to recruit members on Linked In.