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My Pleasure Reading

My Goodreads account is a mess and so in lieu of fixing, I’ll put here what I’m reading outside of work hours:

Just finished Your Voice in My Head by Emma Forrest. Not the best book for curing the winter blues, but I read this riveting memoir anyway. If you love how words are put together, read this. It’s disturbing, but incredibly rewarding at the same time. I love how the author honors someone who helped her heal. And now I must read everything she’s written.

Began The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert–a joy to read but will take me a while because I have the hardcover and won’t lug it around on the subway. This will make me savor it. Considering I just killed a plant (I have no idea how!), a book with a strong botany element is in order.

Back Forever by Karen Booth, my super-joy pleasure read. This is the sequel to Bring Me Back, which is an 80s girl’s fantasy–having the rock star you idolize fall in love with you.

After this, I will dive into Tracey Garvis Graves’s Uncharted and Brandi Glanville’s Drinking and Dating.

Now please, let me not go blind.

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A Day Where I Did Nothing on My To Do List

postitEach day, I make a list of items I must accomplish. In the office, with good intentions, I wound up avoiding my list and I put the blame squarely on Mercury in Retrograde (right?). First, I walked in to see a bag of Valentine’s chocolates from my employer. Talk about sweet sabotage! I ate three pieces¬† immediately. I took it as a sign that I shouldn’t plan every minute, she says through her sugar fog.

Though I didn’t edit 10 pages of one book (due in two weeks) or 50 pages of another (due in a month), I am down to 5 emails in my inbox. Here’s what the chocolate made me do, as well:

File 4 months’ worth of papers (I keep everything). Read a manuscript. Start another one. Attend 2 meetings. Rewrite some copy. More copy. And lose my cell phone somewhere in my shoe drawer (I think).

In today’s shameless book promotion:

I got to contribute to Marshal Zeringue’s wonderful blog, which asks my casting choices for the movie version of my book (this is dreamland). My family and I did have a blast coming up with a cast for some of the characters. We’re still mentally picking who would play my in-laws.

And just when I thought things had quieted down, the Associated Press reviewed my book! My mother has been tracking it and sending me updates. We love AP!

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Happy Presidents and Paris’s Birthday!

photo (15)My mother told me that today is Paris Hilton’s birthday, in addition to my stepfather’s. Never more have I felt that she and I share the same DNA because I remember celebrities’ birthdays even more than those of my relatives. Today is also Denise Richard’s birthday (I looked it up once to make sure she’s older than I am–but she’s NOT).¬† Four presidents were born in February–two major ones–so we link them together and get a holiday. I remembered that Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809 in a log cabin in Kentucky. But I didn’t remember that today was a holiday from work.

Once I understood that I had a day off, I set forth to complete pointless–but satisfying–tasks, like unraveling this yarn for three hours. After this, to make up for a weekend of watching The Secret Circle, I made myself read one Baudelaire poem in French. I did this for ten minutes, laughed at what a drugged out crabapple he was with all this “spleen” stuff, then went for a long run. Before Sam gets home from his work, I might try to wash the dishes. I could go to the bakery instead–be all festive since a president’s birthday is a good excuse for cake.

Back to work tomorrow.

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A Very Bloom Valentine

photo (13)Valentine’s Day can be a sore subject, and I went through periods of hating the day. It’s not a holiday I am eager to experience, though at work, it’s a spectacle of chocolate. Over time, I’ve learned to think of it as an appreciation of love.

My first Valentine’s Day with Sam, I didn’t know what to expect. We were already happy. Maybe I hinted that VD was a nice day for coupledom. All I remember is that at 6am on the day itself, he ran out the door and came back with the Duane Reade special of fake rose petals and candle set. Ta da! He’d forgotten all about Hearts Day. I laughed so hard–not a big deal since how can you complain when someone is nice to you every day? The next year, he brought me home a “Cupid launcher” which I keep safe since there are middle-aged children in the house. We spent much of that evening shooting little plastic Cupids around the living room. Last year, I received a Duane Reade elephant wearing an orange yarmulke (a Sam touch).

But this year takes the cake. A GIANT DOG that is almost the size of chair. I reciprocated with a medium-sized tiger, flashing Disney glass, and heart soap. It’s officially tradition that Valentine’s Day is about the crap at Duane Reade.1799061_10152199077114449_1332827383_o

I hope you enjoyed this day, however you spent it.

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Movie Night

MV5BMTkxNjIyNjE5OF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMTI3NzkxOQ@@._V1_SX640_SY720_Since we’re battling colds and the weather is intimidating, this will be short…and we have 20 minutes left of Olympus Has Fallen to watch. We’re not quite sure who gets out alive. This one makes White House Down seem like Citizen Kane. Do you hear me complaining? There’s something comforting about action movie tropes:

1. A child will be in danger (not cool, but the successful rescue is predictable, thank goodness)

2. Bullets fly and never hit the hero except maybe in the arm.

3. The VP doesn’t exist.

4. First Lady dies.

5. Just when you think the fictitious Prez has died, he lives!

6. The nukes are always activated.

7. Just one guy saves the White House while a room full of people watch.

8. If Morgan Freeman is in it, he will say something pivotal that will give you chills.

9. You can count on many unintentionally homoerotic scenes.

And the big lesson is that you don’t want to mess with the guy from 300.

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Last Night’s Reading at B&N

1796701_10151973858568520_1844990301_nWhat a trip! For months, I’d been looking forward to my first reading of Romance Is My Day Job and the day finally arrived. Oddly enough, I felt pretty great rather than super nervous. Monkey Mind might have done some whispering in my ear (you’re going to get fear-paralysis 10 minutes before, that stomach flu–it’s going to hit you right in the middle of your reading) but I ignored it because, hey, I’m 45. All went well, I enjoyed every minute: going to B&N, seeing my face on a sign for a reading, navigating the carpet in my stilettos, watching my friends/relatives come up the escalator, noticing the former headmaster of my high school (how intimidating is that) in the second row, seeing my mother in the first row (did I mention she’s in front of audiences ALL THE TIME?), getting the sudden urge to impulse purchase jigsaw puzzles three minutes before the reading, and the massive contingent of buddies from work.

At the end, I got to meet a whole lot of nice people and see familiar faces. My only brain-freeze came when I had to sign books. What do you say? I love you, where did you get that sweater, thank you for reading my book, do you like Shahs of Sunset too? I did what I could, but I’ll say to those who received signed books, I deeply appreciate your being there. I enjoyed talking with you. It was a little like my wedding where I spoke with no one for more than two minutes–though that chunk of time was lovely.

I could totally do this again!

And now, withdrawal and back to work, which means editing.

PS: Does anyone notice my staple for meetings?

(photo taken by my BFF Nici, who is in the book)