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Nora McInerny      

Humorist, Essayist, Podcast Host & Author of "It's Okay to Laugh: (Crying is Cool Too)"

Nora McInerny is a writer, storyteller, and creator. A reluctant grief expert, she miscarried her second baby, lost her father to cancer, and lost her husband, Aaron, to a brain tumor within six weeks in 2014. Known for bringing heart and humor to tough topics, McInerny wrote the critically acclaimed memoirs It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying is Cool Too) and No Happy Endings; she writes essays for Elle, Cosmopolitan, TIME, Slate, and Vox. McInerny created the Hot Young Widows Club, hosts the award-winning podcast “Terrible, Thanks for Asking,” founded the nonprofit Still Kickin, and spoke on TED’s mainstage. She was voted Most Humorous by the Annunciation Catholic School Class of 1998.

Like most women in their 20s, Purmort bounced from boyfriend to boyfriend and job to job. Then one day she met Aaron, a charismatic Art Director in New York City. They were kindred spirits, making mix tapes (and pancakes) into the wee hours of the morning, finishing each other's sentences. They just knew. When Aaron was diagnosed with a serious form of brain cancer, they didn't let that hinder their courtship. They got engaged in Aaron's hospital bed and married right after his first brain surgery. They had a baby when he was on chemo and they shared an amazing summer filled with happiness and laughter. A few months later, Aaron died in her arms in another hospital bed. Aaron's widely creative obituary, which they wrote together, touched the world.

Purport explores universal themes of love, marriage, work, (single) motherhood, and depression through her refreshingly frank viewpoint. Her book It's Okay to Laugh, is a love letter to life, in all of its messy glory, and what it's like to still be kicking',

Speech Topics


Speaking Topics

  • Humor, Grief and Loss (I’m a Widow, and Yeah, It’s Awkward and Often Humorous)
  • Making the Most of Your Life, Because Hi, We’re All Going to Die
  • Motherhood, Feminism and Being a Kickass Woman
  • Internet, Storytelling and Personal Narrative
  • Non-Profit Organization and Entrepreneurship: Finding Meaning in Work
  • Cancer, Brain Cancer, Death and Dying

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