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I know the producer/writer/director of The Big Bang Theory’s Dad – Nyah Nyah Nyah

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.

“The group is led by Norm Prady, a long-time writer with a background in news, journalism and advertising. His son is also the writer/producer of The Big Bang Theory on CBS, so writing is in the genes. :-)”
Again. Nothing. Nada.
Oh, I did get a few inquiries from folks who wanted to know more, but in the end, no one could commit. 
We still have room for one or two new members, especially if you like pizza and pop and stealing little chocolates. And if you join, you too can say, “I know Norm Prady, whose son writes, produces and directs The Big Bang Theory on CBS, Thursday nights at 8:00pm.” *plug plug*

But only if you live in southeastern Michigan. Otherwise, it’s going to be a long commute.

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April 29, 2012 - 3:16 pm

Daron Henson - @ Pam – Nice story. I would like to partake in a writer’s group such as that. I believe it could hone my writing skills. Instead of pizza and pop he should serve coffee and Twix bars.

April 29, 2012 - 4:07 pm

Pam Houghton - Coffee and Twix bars, eh? Works for me! Thanks for stopping by.

May 1, 2012 - 3:02 pm

bonsaibabe - Hi pam, I’m tracking you down here….:) did you see we have an offer to do our collaborative ‘write in’ on linkedin. what would you like to do? since this is your blog…

May 1, 2012 - 4:31 pm

Pam Houghton - Hi – I saw that. I will respond over there. 🙂

May 1, 2012 - 7:15 pm

brenda - I never had any success with the writing group (although I so wanted to be part of one) I had romanticized about the writer connection, as one does about first love. I was the only member of the group that was not an MFA’er and writing a book. Now I am shopping the book and they are still meeting and not writing but talking about sharing pages. I have to pass on your group because my Jet Plane is in for repairs. 🙂

May 1, 2012 - 7:30 pm

Pam Houghton - Hi Brenda – too bad about your jet plane! 🙂 I know what you mean about the MFAs and the talking-too-much-about-writing but not doing enough to actually get out there and get published syndrome. Sometimes you’ve just got to take the chance that your writing isn’t perfect, never will be perfect, but that lots of imperfect writing gets published – and is still very enjoyable to read! Thanks for stopping by – and good luck with your book.

May 2, 2012 - 10:38 pm

Lisa MacDougall - Hi Pam:

I only wish I lived in southeastern Michigan. I have fought the urge to write for most of my life and, finally, gave up fighting. I started a little website and blog and spend most of my free time writing what I haven’t written for so many years.

I have yet to become part of a writer’s group, other than as part of a university creative writing course. I would like to join one but have yet to find the courage and the right mix of professionalism and fun. If I did live in your corner of the world, the mixture of Starbucks, pizza, chocolate, pop, the Big Bang Theory (which I just absolutely love), a really great sounding writer’s group, and what I need to do the most – be figuratively naked for once – would have me begging to be included.

Would your group like to relocate to Middleton, Nova Scotia?


May 2, 2012 - 10:52 pm

Pam Houghton - Hi Lisa! I hear it’s beautiful there, but alas, I doubt we can move our group to the glorious shores of Canada. 🙂
You sound like you’d be a great addition to the group, though.

It’s good you realized it was time to get writing. It’s never too late. Much luck to you.

May 10, 2012 - 1:44 am

Darian Wilk - Well color me lucky for stumbling onto this post! Whereabouts in the south east are we talking about, because I live in the Downriver area 🙂

May 10, 2012 - 12:20 pm

Pam Houghton - Hi Darian – the group is in Berkley, 11 Mile and Woodward area, just off I-696.

June 6, 2012 - 9:00 pm

Cindy L - Count me in too … unless we get too busy with our other group 🙂

August 12, 2018 - 1:38 pm

Book review - Lonely Boy: Tales from a Sex Pistol by Steve Jones - Pam Houghton - […] addiction, sex addiction and a tendency to steal musical equipment from his peers is fascinating. A writing mentor of mine said writers are supposed to reveal themselves in their work – stand naked on a street corner, so […]

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