Missouri Woman Claims Nobel Prize

I am talking today with Dawn Downey, author of “Stumbling Toward the Buddha,” a collection of personal experiences that is stumbling toward being at one with publishing.

Dawn Downey

O.M.T. Who was the person who most inspired you to write?

Dawn: My kindergarten teacher, who said “what do you mean you don’t want to take a nap? Do you have a note from home?”

O.M.T. So you started your writing career with fiction. Do you believe, as some important writers have said, that fiction is truer than fact?

Dawn: Well, Mr. Typing, according to my psychiatrist I’m unqualified to make that distinction, which is why I only write Faction. The kindergarten teacher was the catalyst for my first personal essay, titled “Dear Miss Teacher, My Child Suffers From a Rare Disease That Causes Fatality From Midday Naps,” written under my nondeploom “Mrs. Downey.”

O.M.T. Faction?

Dawn: Faction.

O.M.T. So, your psychiatrist has had a part to play in your development as a writer. (That’s a question, Mrs. Downey.)

Dawn: In my masters degree program from the Iowa Writers Workshop, I learned that questions are punctuated by question marks. But to answer your questionable question: it was the other way around actually. My writing affected his development as a psychiatrist. I was driving home after the launch party for my Nobel Prize winning memoir “On the Road Again: My Days as a Nascar Driver and How I Went on to Win the Indy 500.”

O.M.T. You were a race car driver?

Dawn: No. So, driving home from the launch. I was pulled over for doing 65 in a school zone. The cop walked up to my window. “May I see your license?” I handed him a copy of my book. “What’s this?” “Literary license.” I was probably a bit impatient since he was so dense. Anyway, One…May I call you One? When he said touch your fingers to the tip of your nose, I swear he said the tip of his nose. The judge sentenced me to six months of psychotherapy. Although I have to admit this is not my area of expertise, I’m told that Dr. Freud’s work with me was groundbreaking.

O.M.T: This may be difficult for you, Mrs. Downey, given your lengthy story titles, but we’ve reached the length of this post that is tolerable by our short-attention-spanned readers. In closing, all I have to say is that I could find no evidence for your winning the Nobel Prize, nor that you attended the Iowa Writer’s Workshop.

Dawn: Faction!

Downey’s essays have been published in The Christian Science Monitor, Skirt! Magazine, ShambhalaSun.com, The Best Times and Kansas City Voices: A Periodical of Writing and Art. Her latest, No Turning Back: Essays About Everyday Bravery is available at Smashwords.com
Her website.

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