Dennis R. Miller lives in upstate New York and is the PR Director at Mansfield University of Pennsylvania. He is the author of the novel, The Perfect Song, and a former musician. He has written syndicated newspaper columns on the humor of daily life and music, as well as blogs, and the higher education marketing blog.
Morph to 1st Person
-I’ve always known I wanted to be a writer, beginning with a poem about an alcoholic when I was in 6th grade.
-I began writing as a reporter for a regional daily Gannett paper when I was 18. I wrote features and covered everything from accidents, to drownings to school board meetings and murder. It taught me to write fast, tight and clean.
-One of the most traumatizing stories was when I interviewed a former Black Panther and a former practicing witch. Both had either injured or killed people and now were lecturing on behalf of Jesus. When they finished the interview, a group of people appeared, put their hands on me and prayed fervently. They were happy that I had been reborn, but I didn’t think I was. I went home and drank many beers with a friend to calm down.
-My wife and I were in several bands for many years– first country, then 50s-60s rock. I played keyboards and sang. Some of the sweetest moments of my life were those when we lifted hundreds of people and brought them into our moment through music. It’s powerful.
- My wife and I were in a single car crash in 2008, hitting a concrete bridge at around 55 mph in a Nissan Sentra. My wife had three broken ribs. I broke my back in three places and spent 3 1/2 months in a body cast. What those 3 months taught me would fill another book.
-My favorite books are listed in the continually expanding “Literary Influences” page.
-My favorite movies are the first Indiana Jones movie, The Shawshank Redemption, Dr. Zhivago, Casablanca, Silence of the Lambs, and, most recently Source Code, among others.
-My favorite songs? Hey, I’m a recovering musician. There are a hundred, but I do love The Beatles, Roy Orbison, Elvis, Merle Haggard, and Lucinda Willams. (I’ll probably add to this list).
-We’ve traveled the country extensively by car and have gotten to know people and places from Maine to California. Found a couple magic places in New Mexico and would love to return one day.
Please check my Pinterest board for “Writers Who Influenced Me.”
You can not only read a snippet of how they influenced me but see pictures as well. And everybody likes pictures.