MEL MISKIMEN

 

WRITER. AUTHOR . . . . AND SO MUCH MORE.

Mel Miskimen is a regular contributor to More Magazine and The Huffington Post. Her essays have been published in Wisconsin Trails, Fetch, and Rosebud Literary Magazine. She’s a past winner of the Wisconsin Writers Association’s Jade Ring and Florence Lindemann awards, a frequent essayist for Milwaukee Public Radio and a storyteller for The Moth. Her first book, Cop’s Kid was published by Terrace Books.


She’s always been a smarty pants wise ass and spent the better part of her elementary Catholic education, in the principal’s office, standing in corners or writing on the blackboard, “I will not make jokes about Jesus.”


In high school, she had to suppress her brain’s default-to-joke response. “Boys were not attracted to funny girls. Funny was not sexy. Funny was something the boys were. If I wanted to go to Prom, I had to quell my inner snark. Those were the dark years.”


She graduated from UW-Milwaukee with a degree in Art.


That’s right. Art.


She explains it this way:

“I always wanted to be a writer, actually I wanted to be Dick Van Dyke’s alter ego Rob Petrie, so I took Creative Writing. According to one professor, I would go far because I wrote ‘like a man.’ (A good thing?) But according to another professor, my writing lacked substance and metaphors for death. He told me to set my sights on something other than writing, and like a dope, I listened.”


She came to terms with her brain’s default-to-joke wiring in the 1990s. “Having a husband and two kids . . . it was my coping mechanism.”


Her second book, Sit. Stay. Heal! a story of loss, finding hope and healing with the help of a badly behaved labrador retriever – sort of a Tuesday’s With Morrie meets Marley and Me – will be published in 2016 by Sourcebooks. She lives in Milwaukee, in a drafty old house with her very supportive husband of 33 years and their black lab, the first dog allowed on the furniture because . . . “That’s what happens when the kids left.”


Visit her website: www.melmiskimen.com. She is represented by the Kathy Green Literary Agency.