Christine Beatty's Path to Writing

In my younger days I regarded writing as an activity only slightly preferable to a root canal. Except for a Science Fiction class, I wrote just enough to avoid flunking high school. I penned a few short stories, but my head was seldom focused to see a project all the way through. But even had I the faculties to produce worthwhile work, I had little to say. I attempted to write another story in the Air Force but was distracted by getting stoned and the secret crossdressing that filled me with guilt.

Getting married didn't "cured" me of my crossdressing, and after attending a 1984 Halloween party in drag I started a diary in hopes it would help me figure out my problem. Seven months later I left my wife to transition and quit the diary. I wrote song lyrics and short, philosophical essays but by the time I got deeply hooked on drugs I stopped writing and tried to go back to being a man.

By the time I turned thirty, my enslavement to heroin nearly killed me. I got sober in a Veteran's Administration rehab, where my gender baggage fell into my lap. Unable to share my history with my fellow veterans I let it all out in a journal, which became the basis for my autobiography. By then I'd fallen in love with writing, so I began contributing articles to local publications. In September 1991, Spectator magazine (born of the infamous Berkeley Barb) paid me for a story and put me on the masthead. From then on I became a regular, featured contributor covering local politics and community events.

In 1992 I wrote my first novel, a dark, tragic romance, and a year later I published Misery Loves Company. From 1994-96 I unleashed a torrent of short stories and journalistic articles, some of which appear here. However, I mostly put my writing career on hold in favor of my former band, Glamazon. I hung up the band in 2002 and I plan to use those experiences in a future novel.

In 2003 I took an interest in screenwriting and a year later received a certificate in Feature Film Writing from UCLA Extension. Since then I have shifted my attention between my now-finished autobiography, rewriting my first novel and several screenplay projects, so far not produced. In addition I have continued my literary activism for LGBT issues.