The American Matriarchy is Coming!

The American Matriarchy is hurdling toward us like a cultural tsunami and most of us can’t see it coming. It’s barley visible. It’s taking its time. But the increasing democratization of our democracy is making it both possible and inevitable. Girls will be girls and they will be doing it in places we haven’t yet imagined.

Why is it coming?

The simple answer is the vote. The move toward democratic governance was the first step in a return from centuries of patriarchy to rule by women. The move to extend the franchise to women was the second, and equally significant, move. The Nineteenth Amendment put us on this track and there is no going back now.

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I don’t see it!

You’re not looking. More than half of the graduates of American colleges, universities, and law and medical schools are now women. Women are increasingly the primary or sole breadwinner in American families. Take a moment to think about who has the most education among your siblings, children and grandchildren. Now think harder about what kinds of jobs these educated women are getting compared to their less educated brothers, husbands and sons. Now think even harder about how many of the families you know in your everyday life are fed and clothed by the income of women.

Equal pay for equal work is coming, whether corporate America wants it or not. And that’s because all those women graduates, particularly the lawyers, are going into politics. There’s a critical mass of them rolling toward the House and the Senate and the Supreme Court. A tsunami lifts all boats – often when we least expect it.

What difference will it make?

A big difference. A gigantic difference. A revolutionary difference. I intend to write more about that in the coming months. But let me begin by suggesting that the current debate over women’s reproductive rights, the debate over equal pay, the debate over economic disparity, and the debate over single payer healthcare are really just skirmishes in the proxy war over whose values are going to control the American family and, with it, the country: Dad’s or Mom’s.

The battle between the sexes has been raging since the creation of the species. But the fighting field has dramatically shifted. In 21st Century America, the weapons of choice in the civic area are the ballot box and the classroom. And for as long as women have the right to those two things, the eventual outcome is preordained. The matriarchy is coming, whether the patriarchy is ready or not. The impact of this coming tidal wave will change how we live, how we work and how we govern.

I, for one, can’t wait until it gets here.


Totally Gone with the Wind

Congrats to the Gunn High School Choir in Palo Alto, California for a truly outstanding production of Totally Gone with the Wind, directed by William Liberatore and written by yours truly. With a cast of two hundred, fabulous costumes by Sue Ellis and rockin’ choreography by Gay Richard, it brought  the audience to their feet on opening night. Super cast, having lots of fun. Applause! Applause to all the students and staff who made me laugh until I cried!Civil-WarThis show is available, royalty free, to any interested nonprofit group at


FINALLY—A COMING OF AGE STORY FOR BABY BOOMERS! It’s time the biggest generation in history had a fun, funny female sleuth with a job that no longer needs her, four grown children who no longer listen to her, and an ex husband whose final gesture is to have his ashes sent to her in a burger box via the US mail. If you’re a Boomer or a Boomer’s baby, you gotta read FOLLOW THE DOTTED LINE. You’re not only going to find a lot of yourself in this story, but you’re going to know for sure that we Boomers ain’t dead yet! Find out more about the book and me (Nancy Hersage)  at

What is a Movie Treatment?


A movie treatment is a narrative, written in the present tense, of a movie idea. It’s used to follow up a ‘pitch’ or synopsis of a story, so that producers can get a clearer look at how you intend to develop your idea. Treatments come in various lengths, depending on the purpose. Short treatments include story beats without a lot of detail. Longer treatments can give your reader a very complete, detailed idea of how your movie will play out from beginning to end.

If you are trying to get the attention of an agent or producer, then you want something relatively short, say 1-2 pages single spaced.

If you already have someone’s attention because they liked your pitch, then you can write something longer and more detailed, say 3-4 single spaced pages.

If you want to lay out the entire movie so that when the reader is finished she or he has a very good idea of exactly what you have in mind, then I find that 6-7 single spaced pages  will work.

You can read samples of short, mid-length and long treatments on my Treatments Page .

How to Write a Synopsis



Begin with the first sentence. It’s the most important. It should contain two elements. The first is the main character and what he/she was doing before the turning point of your story. For example:

Belva is an ordinary housewife living in Tulsa when …

Jack is reaching the end of an unremarkable career as a journalist when …

A young American couple honeymoons on a small island where …

The second part of this first sentence should introduce the nature of the turning point of  your story, i.e., the event or incident that sets your story in motion.

Belva is an ordinary housewife living in Tulsa when she discovers her youngest son has the power to see into the future.

Jack is reaching the end of his career as a journalist when a young woman appears at his door with a story he can’t walk away from.

A young American couple honeymoons on a small island where dreams are promised and nightmares begin.

In a very short synopsis, or a simple slug line, your goal is to give the reader the central set-up of your story (who the main character is) and a brief glimpse of where it is headed (what’s about to happen to that character). The more you can convey the genre and the mood of the story, the more likely you are to find your target audience.