I have been thinking a lot about whether or not to continue blogging. I began this whole endeavor because I wanted to take people through the day-to-day process of doing a Broadway play—after 46 years. I also thought it would be a way for me to keep my own record of the process that I could refer to in the future when I needed reminding of who said what, of how I felt, of who visited me. I hadn’t thought much beyond that and there was a nagging concern that blogging was a form of ego tripping and/or not being “in the moment.” I am fairly convinced that the latter is not true. I find myself, oddly, very much in every moment, weighing its meaning in my life, asking myself if it has meaning beyond me that I might want to share. Obviously many things go on-in my head and objectively in my life-that I do not share. But I’ve had to think about it. Hence, as I look back over these last four months, my thoughts, activities, feelings, experiences feel clearer and more acute than usual. I attribute this, in part, to blogging although I realize it may also be because of the unusual nature of what’s been happening to me.

The ego part is less clear. Perhaps that will remain so, I don’t know. Is it ego or is it becoming more self conscious? We tend to think of the term ‘self-conscious’ as meaning something bad-as being awkward or uncomfortable with oneself. But the way I am using it, it means something rather different-a consciousness of self, how our presence impacts people, how much of who we are do we actually own. I spent most of my life lacking self consciousness. This is something Katharine Hepburn criticized me for-she, the ultimate example of self-consciousness. As I age, I think a lot about this and am aware that my becoming more self conscious also means I am taking more control over my life-what there is left of it. (And realizing all the while, that the notion of us having control is so relative it’s laughable).

All this to say that the blog makes me more self conscious, more aware of the different aspects of my life, what matters and what doesn’t; what might matter to someone else  and what might not. So—I am going to continue to blog. Maybe not every day. Maybe just when there’s something going on, internally or externally, that might be of use or interest. For instance, I leave this play (and New York) the morning of May 22nd. I leave for the Galapagos Islands with a boat load of friends and family for 8 days. I was just told that I will be able to blog from there!! When Ted and I split up, I made a list of things I wanted to do before I die that I could perhaps turn into fundraisers for the Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention. In 2000, about a dozen rich and fit friends trekked with me to Machu Pichu. This Galapagos trip is also a fundraiser and there will much to report back on and photograph. My blogging support system composed of James Andrews and J.J. make it so easy and fun.

So, between now and the fall, I will be working on my book and then, God willing and the creek don’t rise, I am going to do a movie. Because it is not 100% certain I am not allowed to say what it is or who with, but if it happens, it will be rich soil for interesting blogging. After that, I will again do an eight-day silent Buddhist meditation retreat in Santa Fe and then, hopefully, another movie. Not a bad year for an old gal. I feel lucky. But, as I have said before, luck is preparation meeting opportunity.

My main concern is how blogging will impact my book writing. I have less than a year to finish my book about aging, “The Third Act: Entering Prime Time.” My editor wants to bring it out in September or November 2010 and, as I am a slow book writer (as opposed to blog writer which I do very quickly), I have my work cut out for me. I decided last night, by the way, to make an exercise program(s) for people in their third acts to come out at the same time. I’m excited at the prospect of getting back into the fitness arena.

Got to leave now for the theatre. Eva Mendes is coming this afternoon along with a group of young women from my high school alma mater, Emma Willard, who are being escorted by the wonderful school principal, Trudy Hall. Among the girls will be three “Fonda Scholars.” I am so looking forward to performing for them.

backstage5309-evamendesWith Eva Mendes (photo: Michael Rudd)

Alan and Marilyn Bergman-the world famous composers and lyricists, few things could make me as happy as seeing how profoundly they were moved by the play. I have gotten to know Eva Mendes because she is my daughter-in-law’s best friend.

backstage5309-marilynandalanbergman1With Marilyn and Alan Bergman (photo: Michael Rudd)
backstage5309-emmagangThree Fonda scholar students from Emma Willard (photo: Michael Rudd)

I misunderstood and thought there were going to be young women from Emma Willard. Turns out there were the 3 Fonda scholars (2 juniors and a freshman) and the others were in the vicinity of my class–give or take.

backstage5309-emmagangbig2Me and the whole Emma Willard gang (photo: Micheal Rudd)
manteroflargeAnna Mantero ’10 Jane Fonda Scholar
hudsonfobigAnnie Hudson ’10 Jane Fonda Scholar
mezafondlargeDenise Meza ’12 Jane Fonda Scholar

See you next time.

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  1. Thank you for continuing your blog. I have read all of them, and look forward to each day’s entry. Your upcoming travels sound wonderful. Will Tulea join you?
    She is adorable.

  2. I am so glad you’ll be continuing the blog. You are an interesting, intelligent, thought-provoking woman that I admire so much. I wrote before about Bengal and I am so excited about seeing it, especially after being in Laramie Project. I have a callback for Big Mama in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” tonight…a year ago Laramie…I love how you said luck is preparation meeting opportunity. I look forward to many more blogs. You are an inspiration. Thank you.

  3. Hi Jane,

    As I read your autobiography, I kept thinking “me too!” I honestly felt such a sense of relief to release that other women felt such emotions and had such ultimately similar experiences. As women, I feel that we often just do what we’re expected to do instead of following our own preferred paths so it’s great to hear someone articulating this and giving it a voice.

    My best friend has usurped my copy of the book! She’s even underlining significant passages. And now the blog! I really feel you say what everyone thinks but is too afraid to say (which is such a good thing)! keep up the good work!

  4. I, too, am thrilled that you are going to continue to communicate with us, as your sisters on the planet. I am now back in Malawi, serving especially the children and youth, and had the opportunity to attend your play while in NYC. It was a spiritual experience for me and helped give me more insight as to why I am doing what I am at this point in my life (will turn 63 on May 14). Thank you for continuing to inspire me and connecting me to your wonderful world. Love and blessings to you.

  5. Dearest Jane –

    I have especially enjoyed your voice these past months.

    I teach college in New Mexico and I happened to teach FTA (with excerpts from your memoir and a very thoughtful scholarly essay by Mary Hershberger) just a few weeks ago. It was so nice to “hear” your backstage on Broadway voice in my head as I talked about FTA with 20yo NM students. Just really grounded the whole process for me — many thanks!

    I also thought fondly of you and your voice when, at a niece’s 1st confirmation party yesterday, my aunt raced up to me to share her excitement that you had liked a necklace she had made enough to ask for another. (She lives in Pecos and knows some of your Santa Fe helpers, I guess.) She just beamed with giddy pride. (I’ve been kicking myself all day for not telling her that “Jane Fonda came to my graduation” — Vanessa and I finished at Brown the same year.) My aunt and I had a wonderful “Jane Fonda rocks” moment together — the 40yo nephew with his 60ish aunt, giggling like little ones. Very sweet and I have you to thank for it too.

    I am so glad you are so bravely exploring blogging as a platform. It’s very generous of you, and I’m grateful for it. Being a blogger myself, I can identify with the vulnerabilities that blogging brings up and I appreciate the worries about whether blogging might be getting in the way of other writing projects. But I do find it sustaining and glad you do as well.

    So, thanks, Jane.
    I love reading your blog and will continue to do so long as you do it…

  6. Hi Jane,

    I’ve been reading your blog for a few months (thanks to the mention of the blog in the NYT), but this is the first time I’m writing to you. I’ve really enjoyed reading about your theatre experience and I am so glad that you will continue the blog!

    The thing I love about your writing is your enthusiasm for life, from theater to your friends and family (including Tulea, of course) to your charitable work. You are a “doer” and you give me the push to try things myself that are new.

    Even though we’ve never met, I feel like you’ve been in my life forever. I still have a copy of your Jane Fonda Workout book and even an original audio tape! Remember that? Before the videotapes, you guided our workout on audio.

    Best of luck tomorrow.

  7. Jane, I came across your Blog by accident and it is now a daily read. I’ve enjoyed sharing your journey through 33 Variations and am so happy you’ll continue to be blogging. As a fellow Georgian I continue to be proud of you.

  8. Just a line to thank you for sharing and continuing the blog!

  9. Jane, I am very happy to hear that you are going to continue blogging! I enjoy and appreciate your insights!

  10. I am so glad you are going to continue to blog. I’ve enjoyed reading blog very much and would hate to see it end. You are a remarkable woman! I don’t see your writing as ego at all- just connecting with others and sharing.

  11. Glad to hear you’ll continue blogging Jane. Its been an amazing trip watching you cruise through this theatre
    You are truly surrounded with love.
    Looking forward to more adventures with Jane Fonda.


  12. Ted’s loss, for sure.

  13. So glad you’re going to continue to blog! I love reading this site and Twitter. You have such poise, grace, beauty and wisdom.
    Thank you for sharing so much while remaining intriguing and elegant. Many, many people could take a leaf from your book…

  14. Hi Jane
    WOW.Alot of excellent news from you today.I cant wait to read your blogs from the Galapagos Islands.
    And,you have at least one movie in the works!.I hope you will never slow down.

  15. Jane,

    I look forward to reading your blog & am thrilled that you will keep it up. Not only is it fun/interesting to hear about those notable individuals with whom you’ve interacted but I find your thoughts on aging and other issues resonate for me on a personal basis. I’ve always admired you, but now I see you as a person not just an icon.

  16. Awesome! My generation loves to hear your wisdom. We just don’t have people with your perspective; having seen the world change so radically and we easily become complacent. So much to learn from people and we let it go to waste, which I find dispiriting. To sit, to hear the stories, to read what it is like looking back and living now with those experiences is a gift. I find blogging a wonderful meditation and I look forward to be able to continue reading your blog.

  17. Jane

    Happy to see you will continue…. and as you evolve so can your blog.

    I too have considered stopping and am not as active as I was in the beginning. Life has a way of getting in the way sometimes.

    I often write and then think, as you, that it is an exercise of an overblown ego but then something moving happens and I want to capture the moment and share it with those who are interested.

    Remember no one forces us to come to your site… and if people are intersted, and you feel like sharing, then I see no crime.

  18. Dear JANE:- I feel privileged to have made it to NYC this weekend from VANCOUVER BC CANADA to catch your very moving and quite marvellous performance in *33 VARIATIONS with congratulations to the rest of your cast and the entire creative team behind the show. What a clever set! And it was nice of you to stop en route to your car ride home and sign for your fans including me in the rain. As to your blog, it’s great and kept me increasingly interested in catching your show!
    Continued best wishes from BWJ

  19. Your girls seem quite fabo–I am always inspired by young people who are on such good paths….am I young? 28? Hmm. Anyway,I very much appreciate reading your blog–and I think everyone that blogs–if they are worth their salt–have these issues. I know I do! What I must do is learn when to speak and when I should absolutely say nothing–I am a bit of a narcissist I hate to admit. I am learning that less, and a meaningful presence, are always more. I hope to always be learning lessons. Alas, Alan and marilyn Bergman!! Wow! Next person for pics-Barbra!lol Cheers!

  20. Jane,

    Excited to hear we will be blessed with continued blogs.
    May I say, you do own every thing you do, with great passion. Your a presence that provokes, empowers,and
    most of all inspires act of love.


  21. Hooray! I have a lot of respect for you as a person, your acting achievements and your terrific writing skiills … it’s a pleasure to read your views and reflections on things. Thanks for keeping it up – at whatever rate you please!

  22. I happened to catch Stanley and Iris on T.V. a while back( it was awesome) and I remembered reading your book a few summers back and what an impact it had one me. So, I googled your name and came across your blog. I enjoy it everyday and am so glad thatyou will continue. I read somewhere that happiness comes neither from external validation nor solely from within but from “between,” from the relationships created by friendship and love. I feel that after your sharing so much that you have created something that brings happiness between you and me even though we have never met.

  23. Hi Jane,

    I am very happy you will keep blogging because you got me hooked!!


  24. I am so pleased to learn that you plan to continue your blog beyond the run of your play. As a fan in the UK who is unable to make the trip to see you perform, your blog has provided a fascinating, thoughtful, joyous, uplifting and humorous insight into your experiences. Thank you for sharing with us in such a generous and selfless manner these past few months. I’m really pleased that you have found the process rewarding and I look forward to continuing to read your blog in the future as other new and exciting projects develop.

    Best wishes,

  25. As part of the discipline of writing your book, blogging will touch different nerves. Just limit the time you spend blogging. You don’t need to do it every day but it touches different nerves.

  26. Please continue to blog, even if it’s intermittent.
    Really enjoy and learn from what you share.

  27. I will read your blog as long as you continue it. Every blog is a different experience, each one has its own life span. So, I appreciate every moment you give to your writing here, but hey, if you ever have to move on, that’s cool too.

  28. So glad to hear you are going to continue the blog. It has been nice reading about the play and the inspiration you try to draw from every aspect of your life. I’ve been inspired.

  29. i love reading your blog, but, to answer your question, “My main concern is how blogging will impact my book writing” – my hunch is that it will dissipate and scatter your thoughts all over so that you won’t be able to condense or let it cook until you have book material. that’s just my take. one trick is to send mails to yourself of drafts and then resend mails again with the same subject like _v1, _v2, etc so that you can rework your material many times and from many different angles. good luck with the book!

  30. I love reading your blog..keep doing them and all the things you love to do! Thank you.

  31. I’m Gaston Mantero Father of Anna Mantero and Shame fully although My children Are Honored By Jane Fonda I have no contact with her and or her Older sister Katherina Mantero I’m Bless that Jane Place this Blog I have been searching for them for 8 years the Have no communication with me as the Mother Has me Erased me from them with lies. Please see my web page at I would like to have a loving Father doughter relations with my Youngest Darling doughter Anna and Katherina a Gilted Loving Father Gaston Mantero

  32. Willkommen hier im Flirtchat.

    Der Flirtchat bietet dir die Alternative beine frauen und vieles mehr,sicherlich auch Aufregend chatten
    Hier im besten Flirtchat findest du beine frauen Blind Date
    Suchst du eventuel Sexgeschichten , dann bist du hier genau richtig.Gut,stellt sich die Frage,worauf wartest du?
    Aufregend chatten junge mädchen ,schnell anmelden .
    Suchst du jemand von Dübendorf, vieleicht von Bremen, vieleicht aus BergischGladbach , oder von Illnau-Effretikon, oder aus Stockerau? Sicher kein Problem.!

  33. Here I am,

    Because it’s been a couple of years since I’ve had the Ye Grey Walls protecting, and all of things have happened, reading this blog post again recently, taught me that while I have not changed since then I do not really need to…

    If you end up reading this Ms. Janie, I have a lot to ask— fingers crossed for you to have some time to message me.

    Best of the best, of the best of the best,

    Anna Mantero, Class of 2010

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