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The Trouble with Being a Writer in Reno

  1. Summer is tourist season. Traffic is a nightmare in any growing city but lately it’s unreal in Reno. Surface streets are not able to handle increased motorists, therefore increasing the crabbiness of locals. I was nearly in a head on collision with a truck in a center median yesterday. Thankfully I lived.
  2. Reno has an identity problem. Homeless. Drugs. Booze. Gambling. Wealth-sanctuary-city yet very poor schools and a growing crime problem. There is a great migration of snobbish urban nonprofessionals who are sitting in coffee shops which are acting upscale but charging $9.50 for 4 substandard donuts. An elitist trendy tactic that usually results in a fiery crash and burn of your business.
  3. As we all know, living in a city in crisis makes you annoyed. Irritable. Angry. Lost. Hopeless. Tired. It’s hard enough fighting off procrastination and writer’s block without having to fight the grunge of the city.
  4. There are more smokers in this town than all of the western hemisphere. I spend my days coughing and having asthma attacks rather than writing.
  5. Reno is kidding itself if it thinks it will stay an art mecca or attract those without major cash in the bank. Two bedroom dinky townhouse built in 1978 rents for $1800. A bargain for sure, to Bay Area-ites. However, people, this is Reno. You know, Nevada? We have legal prostitution, 24/7 party life, pit bulls in the park, crime, gangs, drugs, mentally insane and a general ‘fuck you’ atmosphere. Hey, well, maybe that is why artists love it so much…

Let’s just say there are different types of writers. I’m the type that needs quiet. I can’t write with jackhammers pounding, cars drag racing, guns popping, men and women fighting, upstairs neighbors partying, dogs barking, children screaming (not mine) and tortoises snapping.

(Just seeing if you’re awake).

I need my Montana back. I need Rocky Mountain infusion or I fear my creative juices may run dry.

So the trouble with being a writer in Reno is that I was a better writer in Montana. Wish me luck. I’m going to need it…

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