Writer. Speaker. Apologist for the beauty of pugs. Ex-competitive figure skater. Mental health advocate. Still rocks out sometimes.
Laura Zera’s writing can be found in the New York Times, the Washington Post, DAME Magazine, Quartz, Catapult, Full Grown People, McSweeney’s, The Rumpus and other places, and she is a regular contributor to the Seattle Times. She has completed a memoir and is at work on a novel set in South Africa. She is also a speaker for the mental health organization The Stability Network.
Originally from Vancouver, B.C., Laura is a chronic wanderer and has traveled to 75 countries. She currently resides in Seattle with her husband, award-winning photographer Francis Zera.
(For a resume, see my LinkedIn profile.)
Some quick bits:
- I was a race car driver in a former life and hang on to a shred of that exhilaration in my present existence. The grab handle on the passenger side of my Mini Cooper is well used.
- I cry easily, which makes the rest of my family laugh.
- For several years, I was listed in the phone directory under my dog’s name, Pug Ozwald. I asked the phone company if they could put an umlaut over the ‘u’ in pug and told her my “roommate” was Danish.
- I’ve competed at the Canadian Figure Skating Championships.
- I live with panic disorder, major depression and Complex PTSD, and I’m an empath.
- Most of my eighteenth year was spent as a volunteer on a kibbutz in Israel, an experience that turned me into a global citizen.
- Grade 11 Earth Science class was spent perfecting my ability to gleek. Now I must be very careful whenever I eat anything sour.
- I attended Nelson Mandela’s presidential inauguration.
- I’m a left-handed night owl, which means when I‘m struggling to sign the inconveniently angled payment screen in the grocery store at midnight, no one’s around to hear me curse.
My most treasured book is my passport. I believe that the more we know about each other, the more we will do to ensure each other’s long-term health and prosperity, whether it be for your neighbor next door or someone thousands of miles away who you’ve never met. The more we share our stories, the more we feel our inherent human connection and the less we feel pain and shame. Nobody is alone. You are not alone.
Thank you for being here. I hope you’ll come back often.