Santa Cruz Good Times

Oct 08th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Local actress Clifford Henderson takes a

ae-clifford1_thumbHer book explores what she calles "The Middle of Somewhere"

She’s known for laughter, not literature. But that’s all about to change this month as local actress, improviser and co-owner of The Fun Institute, Clifford Henderson, releases her first published novel. The book, “The Middle of Somewhere,” by the small publishing company, Bold Strokes Books, is a story of a lesbian woman finding her way in life. Henderson will speak about her book at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 29 at Bookshop Santa Cruz; her novel sells in local bookstores.

For Henderson, this is a new venture. She’s long been known in our community for her work with The Fun Institute, an improvisation school she and partner Dixie Cox founded in 2001. The school might be reminiscent of something like The Groundling’s, the Los Angeles-based improv school and acting troupe where some of today’s greatest comedic stars have received training. Right here in Santa Cruz, Henderson and Cox give aspiring actors, established comedians and regular ol’ people a chance to indulge in their inner comedian by way of letting loose on stage and performing improv.

And while Henderson has been working in this field for quite some time, at one point along her road, she decided to write a two-woman show called “Detour Ahead.” “People totally responded to that piece and said they loved the writing,” Henderson says, looking back at the moment that marked her as a writer.

{mosimage}From there she thought “what the hell” and spent a year-and-a-half working on her novel, “The Middle of Somewhere.” The story follows Eadie T. Pratt, a young urban lesbian who lives in San Francisco. Her life is falling apart and she runs from it, hops in her car and pulls a trailer straight out of San Francisco. Her car breaks down in the panhandle of Texas, in front of a Baptist church, the last place on Earth she wants to be stuck. Two rotund women come out to greet and befriend her, and from there a mystery unfolds. Pratt discovers that a financial scandal is underway at the church. Amidst this criminal situation, she meets a woman who is passing through town.

While the story may have a gay protagonist, Henderson doesn’t call it “gay fiction,”—just regular fiction with a gay character. Of course, that niche, she admits, can still be hard to sell. However, she came across a publishing house, Bold Strokes Books, who steadfastly believe in the book and are doing a first run on it.

“In theater you don’t have a product and nothing lasts,” Henderson says. “[But with writing a book] this can be sitting on a bookshelf and I don’t have to be there anymore.” But for her event at Bookshop Santa Cruz, that book will be sitting there, and so will Henderson.

Clifford Henderson will be speaking about and reading from her book, “The Middle of Somewhere” at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 29 at Bookshop Santa Cruz, 1520 Pacfic Ave., Santa Cruz.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger


Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share


Hot in Here

This ain’t no Burning Man—the MAH’s GLOW festival flames on


Mercury Direct in Libra, Columbus Day, Libra New Moon

Mercury completes its retrograde Friday, poised stationary direct Friday evening at zero degrees Libra. Mercury begins its journey through Libra once again, completing its retrograde shadow Oct. 12. Things should be a bit less complicated by then. Daily life works better, plans move forward, large purchases can be made, and communication eases. Everything on hold during the retrograde is slowly released. Since we eliminated all thoughts and ideas no longer needed (the purpose of Mercury’s retrograde) during the retrograde, we can now gather new information—until the next retrograde occurs on Jan. 5, 2016 (1.3 degrees Aquarius), retrograding back to 15 degrees Capricorn on Jan. 25. It’s good to know beforehand when Mercury will retrograde next—Jan. 5, the day before Epiphany. On Monday is Columbus Day, when the sailor from Genoa arrived in the new lands (Americas), Oct. 12, 1492. This discovery by Columbus was the first encounter of Europeans with Native Americans. Other names for this day are “Discovery Day, Day of the Americas, Cultural Diversity Day, Indigenous People’s Day, and Dia de la Raza.” Italian communities especially celebrate this day. Oct. 12 is also Thanksgiving Day in Canada. Monday is also the (19 degrees) Libra new moon festival. Libra’s keynote while building the personality is, “Let choice be made.” Libra is the sign of making life choices. Often under great tension of opposing forces seeking harmony and balance. There is a battle between our lower (personality) and higher selves (soul). We are tested and called to cultivate right judgment and love. When we align with the will-to-good, right choice, then right judgment and love/wisdom come forth. Our tasks in Libra. 


The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program


Film, Times & Events: Week of October 9

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments


Seoul Food

Santa Cruz’s new Sesame Korean is a great introduction to an ancient culinary tradition


Is there evil in the world?

Yes, some people don’t think right because they have been treated badly. Milo Robbins, Scotts Valley, Second Grade


Dos Aguilas Olive Oil

Aptos company is letting locals pick their own olives in October


What’s your biggest pet peeve?

When people say they’re “going down” somewhere, and they’re actually traveling north. Julia Ragen, Santa Cruz, Psychologist