So what does a nice Jewish girl know about porn? Quite a bit. Writer Lynn Isenberg strived for silver screen success and Hollywood nights, but instead found sex scene success and "Boogie Nights." Tired of legitimate film studios' constant rejection, Isenberg found success as a screenwriter for adult films.
"Everyone in Hollywood said I was a great writer, but I couldn't get any projects going," said Isenberg, a Sinai Temple regular. "I wandered into the adult film industry by accident, but found I could tell good stories there and actually see them on film."
In contrast to her never-ending struggle to push projects through the legitimate studio system, Isenberg discovered the porn industry came with a quick turnaround and instant gratification.
"Instead of delayed contract talks, everything was done with a handshake deal," Isenberg said. "I found the industry to have a great deal of integrity."
Ten years later, Isenberg has written "My Life Uncovered," her debut novel inspired by her own unexpected journey through the porn industry. The book, published by Red Dress Ink, follows fictional protagonist Laura Taylor as she juggles her screenwriting dreams, secret adult film career, disastrous dating life and Jewish morals.
"The book is really about finding balance. It's about self-improvement and self-discovery," Isenberg said.
What better place to discover oneself than in synagogue? That's right, this insider peek at the porn industry comes complete with Shabbat morning service scenes. The rabbi's sermons may not be steamy, but they are revealing. The book's heroine does all her best thinking in shul.
"Laura has concerns about her work. She's seeking moral redemption and solace. She finds it at synagogue," she said.
As for her own moral experience, Isenberg says she's better for the time she spent in the adult industry.
"I'm a better person -- more open-minded and less judgmental. I became more tolerant of others, of myself, and of the choices we make."
Isenberg will be appearing at Barnes & Noble, 16461 Ventura Blvd., Encino on Feb. 27, 7:30 p.m.