Biting into a juicy role

Actress takes on various roles on TV but is a serious writer off set.

December 02, 2009|By Joyce Rudolph

Carolyn Hennesy has a knack for being versatile.

On the nighttime TV series “Cougar Town” she plays Barbara, a woman without scruples. She’s fun-lovin’ mob lawyer Diane Miller on the daytime drama “General Hospital.” And when not in front of the camera, the Burbank resident is writing books for young adults.

Hennesy has three visits planned to Burbank public schools to talk about her “Pandora” series, which include the titles “Pandora Gets Lazy,” “Pandora Gets Jealous” and “Pandora Gets Vain.”


“It’s a retelling of the myth, but she’s not an adult,” Hennesy said. “She’s a 13-year-old girl living in the golden age of Greece when Greek mythology was at its Venus.”

Hennesy will visit Luther Burbank Middle School on Dec. 11, and Principal Anita Schackmann said it’s exciting to meet the author and hear how they came up with their stories.

“It inspires the students that someone can take something in their imagination and create a story about it and have it developed into a finished product,” Schackmann said. “It makes them think that someday they could be an author.”

The main character in the Pandora series has a lot in common with middle school students, Hennesy said.

Pandora is a modern girl with a boyfriend, girlfriends at school and a brother. She attends Athens Middle School. She finds a box under her parents’ bed filled with all the evils in the world. She opens the box and lets them out and then she’s brought to Mount Olympus where she is told to bring them back or face eternal torture, Hennesy said.

“But she takes responsibility and says, ‘I will do it. I’ll try to save the world,’” Hennesy said. “And she does.”

Seven evils have escaped the box, and seven books are planned, each dedicated to retrieving the evils. Book four, “Pandora Gets Heart,” is about to be released.

“It’s all about girl power, stepping up and creating your own life,” Hennesy said.

This woman of many faces is beginning her third year playing Diane Miller on “General Hospital,” and she sums up the task in one word — fun.

“I call her the smart and sassy mob lawyer for the mafia of Port Charles,” she said. “She can say things to characters on the show that the audience wants to say. She’s like the Greek chorus.”

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