Margot Merrill on modern parenthood and the writing life


San Francisco provides the backdrop for my first novel, currently titled Richland. My love for the city as well as my late-twenties angst led me to write a true love story gone wrong. Richland is about meeting the right person at the wrong time, and whether we can forgive ourselves, and our loved ones, for our mistakes.

I wrote Richland in cafés in San Francisco’s Mission District, after working during the day as a producer at high-end graphic design firms. (I lucked out in finding something I really enjoyed to do for work. Collaborating, communicating, planning...I've loved it.) I graduated with honors from U.C. Berkeley, with a degree in Political Science, and lived in San Francisco for almost fifteen years.

Then, you know, we had a baby. Alejandro. Who happens to be the most frighteningly smart, confident, beautiful child you'll ever meet. Except your own I mean. When he started crawl-clomping and then stompin' around in our Mission District flat, our downstairs neighbor was not amused. Small humans walk heavy, I learned. And you can't change that. Stressed out, I started imagining a house. Palm trees. Oranges. Meadows of flowers. Oakland, CA of course.  Of course!

Our move in 2009 prompted an identity crisis of massive proportions. I drive across a bridge, or take a train under the bay to go to work or go out in SF. I'm a Rockridge mom, for God's sake! If you don't know the scene, you'll just have to read more. But now, thank God, it's 2010 and I am writing again, and finally loving and editing my poor dear old novel again.

It's a lovely life and I want to tell you about it.



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  1. Best of luck with the book!
    Cousin Dave

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