I grew up mostly right across the river in New Jersey in a little farm town called Quakertown between Clinton and Flemington. There were still a lot of open fields there, then, and woods. I was a fairly dismal student and ended my relationship with formal education the day I squeaked out of high school. I tried my hand at theater school, the HB Studio in New York, but gave that up when they wouldn't let me play old men. I met Jack Hardy around that time and began writing.
I've done a bunch of things to pay the bills over the years, with widely varying degrees of success: I've been a soldier, sailor, touring musician, cook, house painter, clerk, editor, copywriter, laborer. There's other things in there, but who can remember? I spent part of one winter on a scaffold, dangling high on an old West Philly high school, doing something with windows (I'd lived in India for a year when I was 13, and spent most that cold winter on the scaffold wishing I was back in Kashmir). The next spring I had a job watering plants. Some of the plants I watered were in the corporate offices of AT&T. I timed it so I got there around 2 p.m. and could help myself to the buffet in the executive dining room. I wasn't particularly good at any of these jobs, although I usually tried. I was pretty good at being a soldier and I think I wasn't too bad as an editor.
I live again in Pennsylvania now. George Washington crossed the Delaware River a few miles from where I live, on his way to attacking the Hessians in Trenton. Of more interest to me are the nearby former homes of Moss Hart, Oscar Hammerstein, James Michener, Pearl Buck.