Bryan Cohen Guest Post

Ma & Pa
By Bryan Cohen

While I’m writing this blog post on Mother’s Day, it won’t appear until a week from now. I knew starting out on this blog tour that I wanted to dedicate one post to my parents. They have been very encouraging of my creativity and career path and I owe them more than I can repay (those college loan payments are coming soon, Dad!).

When I was growing up, I wanted to be a teacher just like my parents. My dad was an Earth Science teacher for 7th graders for 32 years before retiring to give computer lessons and make repairs for his PC Advisor business. My mom met my dad when she was his student teacher (too cute) and she started as a high school biology teacher before becoming a part-time preschool teacher so she could take care of my brother and me.

My parents have always been extremely supportive, attending every home soccer and wrestling match, encouraging me to take art and music classes, and heading down from Pennsylvania to North Carolina to see as many of my college plays as possible. They never forced me to refocus my dreams to be more practical, which certainly could have backfired on them (thankfully it seems to be working out now). My family isn’t wealthy by any means and they had to work hard to live in a nice suburban area as we grew up and to put my brother and me through college. They could have called in all my loans and forced me to get a regular job years ago.

Instead, they let me grow into myself and always left me feeling like I could accomplish anything. It certainly helps that I received the hard-working durability of my father and the creativity and personable nature of my mother. Sure, my parents aren’t perfect and sometimes they coddle too much, but by focusing on the wonderful traits they’ve given me (genetically and otherwise) I have grown more grateful over time.

When figuring out what you’ve “gotten” from your parents, try to think about all the skills you’ve inherited as opposed to any bad habits. Habits can easily be broken, but if you cultivate the skills you’ve inherited, you can truly become the best of both genetic contributors. Thank you, Mom and Dad, for taking such good care of me. You helped me to become the strong, resourceful person I am today.


Bryan Cohen is giving away 100 personalized writing prompts to one giveaway entrant chosen at random during the blog tour. Personalized prompts are story starters that cater specifically to a writer’s subject matter, strengths/weaknesses, etc. Cohen will create the prompts to cater exclusively to the winner. He is giving away free digital copies of his book The Writing Sampler to everybody who enters, which includes excerpts from each of his four books on writing. The book contains essays, writing prompts and tips and tricks to enhance your writing skills. In addition, for each of Cohen’s books that reach the Top 500 on Amazon during his blog tour, he will add a $50 Amazon gift card to the drawing (up to six $50 cards in total)!

To enter, simply post a comment to this blog post with your e-mail address. Entries will be counted through June 2nd, 2011.

Bryan Cohen is a writer, actor and comedian from Dresher, Pennsylvania. Since graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill he has written four books (1,000 Creative Writing Prompts: Ideas for Blogs, Scripts, Stories and More, 500 Writing Prompts for Kids: First Grade through Fifth Grade, Sharpening the Pencil: Essays on Writing, Motivation, and Enjoying your Life, and Writer on the Side: How to Write Your Book Around Your 9 to 5 Job), several plays (Something from Nothing and Chekhov Kegstand: A Dorm Room Dramedy in Two Acts) and he was the head writer for an un-produced Web series (Covenant Coffee). His writing and motivation website Build Creative Writing Ideas has had over 100,000 visitors since it was founded in December 2008. He lives in Chicago, Illinois.
Follow Bryan on Twitter @buildcwideas.
Creatively stuck? :::


  1. Thank you Marcie for taking part in my blog tour! Just so everybody knows, my parents really liked this post and said they were proud of me :).


  2. I've known mama and papa Cohen for about 15 years, and I can say with confidence that when Bryan makes it big, it'll be because he got his dad's brains, his mother's savvy, and because he himself has an unrelenting drive to stand up and charge after being knocked down ... good luck my man!


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