Lane has been writing since she was old enough to hold a pencil and has been paid for it since 1977, when she sold her first piece to the Los Angeles Herald Examiner.
“That paper subsequently folded, hopefully not related to my article on having big feet.”
Since then, she has been writing free-lance humor pieces for the Op-Ed pages of the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, San Francisco Examiner and San Francisco Chronicle, and is a regular contributor to First for Women Magazine. She has won numerous writing competitions most notably placing in the Writer’s Digest Competition two years in a row, first and third place in The Foster City Writing Competition and was a finalist in three categories (two screenplays and one essay) in the Writer’s Foundation “America’s Best” competition. In 1996, Universal Press Syndicated signed her to fill the void following the death of Erma Bombeck.
In her first attempt at stand-up comedy, she was a finalist in a competition to appear on the Jay Leno show. She mainly blames her family for not winning since they were front row center biting their nails during her set and laughing hysterically at the eventual winner.
The Lane family appeared on the Fox reality show, Trading Spouses, which garnered their highest ratings ever. As a result, Judy has been asked to speak at various Human Rights, Family Pride, Family Matters, and PFlag conferences. She was also a panelist on a segment on KPBS’ “These Days.”
Lane has a bachelor’s degree in English from California State University, Los Angeles and is most comfortable in front of a mirror, a camera and live audience, in that order.
Lane lives in San Diego with her wife of 30 years, Pepper Lane, and have two children, Cory 21 and Shea 18.
The column features current stories of her seemingly proper middle-class life with her wife and two teenagers juxtaposed with life growing up in a housing project in New York City in a family of eight children born to immigrant parents. Her mother was an Irish Catholic and her father Hungarian, who “came out” as Jew when on Judy’s 30th birthday, her mother died. Oy vey.
Aside from writing mercifully short pieces—many thoughtful and profound, others completely irreverent—she has universal appeal. Perhaps because she’s pretty much in every demographic. She’s a woman over 60, but a mother to teenagers. She’s divorced, but remarried—to a woman. She lives middle-class life, but grew up poor.