In Mommy’s El Camino you can chill, shoot the shit, and go places

In Mommy’s El Camino you’ll find Wendy, known to her kid as Mommy, one of the various identities she inhabits—along with author, therapist, Angeleno, and others

You are cordinally invited inside Mommy’s El Camino

My dad bought an El Camino when I was in elementary school. Black with red glitter, it was one of the many cars and trucks he bought or had stolen from him throughout my life. Of all his cars—some he couldn’t drive because his license was temporarily suspended for DUIs—the El Camino was my favorite. I live in Los Angeles, California and I do things like drive away from my writing when I get in way too deep and need to sever. And I do love an El Camino. Let’s drive and talk.

All subscribers can expect a minimum of 4 posts a month that will arrive on Sundays at 6pm like clockwork, with occasional mid-week posts. Paid subscribers will receive all posts with no paywalls, access to archives, and other offerings.

What’s to come in future posts:

·      Essays, fragments, vignettes, and lists that will only appear in Mommy’s El Camino

·      Process talk: I’m writing my fourth book, revising a book proposal, and working with an editor

·      Astrology musings

·      Thoughtful responses to my most FAQ, such as: how did you get your books published; what is your experience with agents (part I, II, and III!); how do you terminate a contract with an agent; how do you deal with rejection (a few posts about this one and some stories of my recent rejections!); how do you write memoir when your family is still living, among others

·      Glimpses and discussions of the books in my bookcases

·      Existential Writing Crisis thoughts and actions

·      Notes on what I’m reading and watching

·      Conversations with other artists

·      Readings and artist talks with writers

·      Future: Videos that will only appear in Mommy’s El Camino

·      Future: A podcast that cross-pollinates with my background as a therapist

·      Future: discussion threads

·      Future: Writing prompts? Maybe? We’ll see.

·      & more

Founding members will be offered one 45-minute conversation with me over Zoom related to any aspect of my writing experience/career/obsession in addition to access to all posts and archive.

Why am I driving this El Camino?

I’ve been mostly off social media since 2020. I realized this year that while there’s a lot I don’t miss about it, there’s some that I do. What I most miss is offering parts of myself that readers appreciated: essays, little missives, ideas, care, frankness, and action to help other writers and artists.

Mommy’s El Camino is my current offering.

I want to experiment with this platform and I’m inviting you to join me in the experiment. My intention is for readers to enjoy the offerings and engage with them. Back in 2002 I had a couple of blogs, one of which became the text of my second book, Hollywood Notebook, and I used to have a tumblr that I used for notes and experiments. I curated and produced the Rhapsodomancy reading series in Los Angeles for over 10 years. I’m bringing a lot of the energy I have for sharing process and spaces with other writers to this project.

Paid subscriptions will support the work I’m creating as well as the work of the writers who will publish certain features on this site.

Thank you in advance to everyone who subscribes, paid or otherwise!

And lastly—various creds~

A little: Wendy C. Ortiz is the author of Excavation: A Memoir, Hollywood Notebook, and the dreamoir Bruja. Her work has been featured in the Los Angeles Times and the Los Angeles Review of Books. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, BOMB Magazine online, StoryQuarterly, FENCE, and elsewhere. Wendy is a parent and psychotherapist in private practice in Los Angeles, California.

A lot: Wendy C. Ortiz is a writer of creative nonfiction working in hybrid forms, essays, and memoir. Her work explores interiority, efforts to metabolize rage and grief, and power differentials between people in relationship in order to reflect the myriad complex ways individuals face, turn away from, and otherwise manage personal and collective traumas. She is the author of Excavation: A Memoir (over 10,000 copies sold), Hollywood Notebook, and the dreamoir Bruja.  Her work has been discussed in the Los Angeles TimesThe Rumpus, and the Los Angeles Review of Books. Her writing has appeared in various venues including The New York TimesJoyland, Fence, DIAGRAM, Tasteful Rude, and a year-long column appeared in McSweeney’s. Bustle once named her one of “9 Women Writers Who Are Breaking New Nonfiction Territory.” Most recently she is the recipient of a Fall 2022 Tin House Residency. Wendy’s current inquiries as an artist include how grief and trauma can manifest in the physical body; sublimation of rage; generational family trauma; and how individuals consciously or unconsciously become politicized over the course of their lives due to experiences large and small. Wendy gives talks on creative writing at universities around the country, and is a parent and psychotherapist in private practice in Los Angeles, California. More work, including links to interviews, podcast appearances, and more can be found here.

Subscribe to Mommy's El Camino

An offering and an experiment. A love letter to other writers in the form of essays about the writing life and regular life, shiny fragments, wild ephemera, and more. A project by Wendy C. Ortiz, author of Excavation: A Memoir. Get in, enjoy the ride.


Wendy C. Ortiz

Author of Excavation: A Memoir, Hollywood Notebook, and the dreamoir Bruja. Essays in BOMB online, Popula, Joyland, the New York Times Modern Love, and more. Book reviews in Alta Journal. Mommy’s El Camino is my latest project.