Following Your Bliss

My time in high school

Attended high school in the

Overall high school experience
5/10. My experience was not unique - I was depressed a lot, but so high achieving I flew under the radar.

Grades in high school
Mostly A's


Favorite subjects
English, History / Social Studies, Visual Arts

Struggled with...
AP Calculus - I forced myself to take it because I believed I needed to achieve in all ways.

Favorite extracurricular
Literary magazine and painting.

Life since high school

[My greatest accomplishment is] writing novels. I learned how to observe people and the world differently and more closely.

Attended college / university at
UC Berkeley

Majored in
English, art, rhetoric.

Post-graduate education or training
Law school

Places lived in US
California, Connecticut, New York

Places lived outside the US

Current occupations / past occupations
Past occupation: Litigation. Current occupation: writer and parent.

Industries I've worked in
- Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services (e.g. Law, Accounting, Interior Design, Graphic Design, R&D, PR, Advertising, etc.)
- Administrative and Support Services
- Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation
- Nonprofit

Did your education prepare you for your career or occupation?

Has your education or career/occupation trajectory ever changed? How?
Yes to some extent. I was a litigator for many years. Now I write about law as a writer, but that subject is one of many. 

A little introspection...

To me, being successful means...
Being happy with what I do on a day-to-day basis.

My definition of success has changed over time. 
When I was in high school, I thought that success meant working in a white collar professional capacity, having power and money, and exotic adventures and participating in art on the side. 

My greatest accomplishment to date and what I’ve learned from it
Writing novels. I learned how to observe people and the world differently and more closely.

My biggest mistake or regret so far and what I’ve learned from it
Becoming a litigator in order to fulfill my high school notion of what success was.

An unexpected event that significantly changed my life and how it impacted me
I suffered an adverse psychotic reaction to coming off an antidepressant. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and due to the stress of litigation, I had to stay on medication for many years. I eventually came off that medication after I became a writer and found a more flexible schedule and job. 

This alumni is open to your questions and follow-ups.
In order to protect anonymity, we will pass along your message and they can choose whether to respond.

My favorite spot in or around Palo Alto

Stanford Theater.