Film writer and director Nicole Conn's first full-length feature, Claire of the Moon, received critical attention upon its release in 1993, the same year the screenplay was published as a novel. Following her success with Claire, Conn went on to write a number of novels and plays.
After receiving a degree in business, Conn began a filmmaking career, founding her own production company in order to bring out-of-the-mainstream screenplays to movie audiences. As writer, executive producer, and director of Claire of the Moon, Conn oversaw all aspects of the story, in which a heterosexual woman discovers another side of herself at an Oregon writers' colony for women. Noel Benedict, a therapist and writer, and Claire Jabrowski, author of a satirical volume titled Life Can Ruin Your Hair, are assigned to share living quarters, and Claire's attraction to openly gay Noel becomes the focal point of the film. Other women who have signed up for the retreat include a romance writer named Tara O'Hara, and a homemaker and mother of twins who is writing a work of fiction in which men experience childbirth. The workshops are run by Maggie, who has purposely placed Claire and Noel together. The film's plot is fueled by the workshop sessions, where the issues of gender politics and sexuality are explored through dialogues among the characters.
Several reviewers commended Conn's portrayal of lesbianism. Jay Carr in the Boston Globe found the work to be "a brave, often ungainly, but always heartfelt lesbian love story." Los Angeles Reader's Paul Birchall called it "intelligent and beautifully atmospheric," and "a deep, philosophical analysis of the very definition of love and intimacy." Chicago Tribune contributor Johanna Steinmetz praised the serious tone of...