Leading by Example

In early spring of 2009, my friend Stacey Graham mentioned an idea she had for a new humor blog. Our group of friends continuously amused each other, so why not spread that joy throughout the internet via essays written in the spirit of Erma Bombeck?

Thus was born An Army of Ermas.

Our ranks have grown, and some early contributors have faded into the background (including yours truly) while others have truly blossomed, turning An Army of Ermas into something I don’t think any of us expected. Erma’s regularly gets thousands of hits per post, and the site was recognized by the Erma Bombeck Writing Workshop as Humor Blog of the Month after only two months in existence. Behind all of it is Stacey, cracking her whip to keep the writers in line and the readers entertained.

To honor and thank Stacey, we have declared today An Army of Ermas Day. I would yodel but I don’t want to waste my quota of vowels for the day.

I’ve only written a handful of articles for Ermas so the site’s popularity has had little to do with me, but it HAS affected me. Watching Stacey take an over-caffeinated idea bubble and turn it into a popular humor site (all while raising five girls, getting an agent, selling a book, running spy camp, and wrangling zombies) has been an inspiration. Anytime I feel like an idea is silly or unattainable, I make myself stop and ask “why not?” Stacey’s determination and exuberance for every project she tackles has given me the hope that I might be able to do the same.

Stacey, thank you.

Me and Stacey on vacation at the end of July. How cute are we?

More friends celebrating An Army of Erma Day:

Terri Lynn Coop
Angie Mansfield
Sara Spock Carlson
Jennifer Caddell
Adam Slade
Jason Tudor
Beth Bartlett
Harley May
Amy Mullis
Patti Wigington
Janna Qualman
Tricia Gillespie
Sarah Garb
Pauline Campos
Melissa Hollern

About Melanie Hooyenga

Writer. Designer. Jock. Reader. Wife. Puppy-Mama. SCBWI member since 2015.


  1. “I would yodel but I don’t want to waste my quota of vowels for the day.” LOLOL!

    Love that photo of you two, which I was just admiring on fb.

    Great post. πŸ™‚ I’ve got one up at my place, too.

  2. YAY for Ermas!! Y’all make the job easy, I just upload and take cookie bribes.

    Mel, thank you for everything. You’re the best hobo a girl could want. <3

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