Read, Drink, Schmooze

BartSimpsonReading Despite the fact that I was nervous as all get-out I had a blast at Peg Alford Pursell's WHY THERE ARE WORDS salon.

I made new friends, and saw the faces of many pals (authors Wendy Tokanuga and Kate Perry, to name a few). It's always cool to be in a room where 80+ literati are hanging on your every word (albeit those words come out shaken and stirred — and not necessarily because of the glass  of wine you've gulped down ahead of time, for some liquid courage).*

For the most part, writers aren't natural readers (except for Joshilyn Jackson — who is also an actress. She is AWESOME, so if you get a chance to hear her read, take it). Through the years, I've grimaced through readings that sounded worse than a fifth grade book reports. The authors read too fast, too low, too embarrassed about their words.

If you write and get the opportunity to read out loud, you shouldn't be. You worked hard on your book, so read it loud, read it proud.

Your audience will be listening with bated breath.




T*Thanks, Ed the Hook, for the correction!


  Josie's Latest Book: Secret Lives of Husbands and Wives

Simon & Schuster/Downtown Press

(ISBN: 9781439173176)

In bookstores June 1, 2010. Order it TODAY!

"Hollywood's got nothing on the cast of characters living in the bedroom community of Paradise Heights, who have the secrets, sex, money and scandal of an OK! Magazine cover story. Josie Brown is a skilled observer whose clever dialogue and feisty style make for truly entertaining reading." –Joan Collins, Hollywood Wives

Order today:

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D’oh! The Simpsons: Enter the Contest to Name a New Character

Homer-Simpson-3 When my son graduated from high school, one of the questions asked on his senior yearbook form was who inspired him the most. I'm guessing the names Lincoln, or Jimmy Carter or Ghandi flitted through that pea soup he calls a brain, but the idol he finally settled on was HOMER SIMPSON.

Yup. Just the sort of thing that makes a mama proud, right?

In truth, Martin and I have no one to blame but ourselves. Both our children were weened on the TV show, so of course one of its characters would have made an impression. (Was it too much to ask for that to be Lisa?…Guess so…sigh...Well, at least it wasn't Comic Book Guy.)

I'm happy to report that said son enjoys philosophy and is wending his way through a degree in Journalism. Perhaps his idol, Homer, has instilled him with some heady lessons after all.

In honor of that — and THE SIMPSON's 20th anniversary — I'm using today's shout-out to encourage you to enter the show's contest to name a new character by clicking here.     

Should be a blast. And in typical Simpsonian form, the contest explains that the writers extended this invitation:

"For 20 years, the artists and writers of THE SIMPSONS have lovingly labored to create a parade of hilariously memorable characters beloved by the whole world. Well, that's all over now. The simple fact is, we're tired. Tired and, frankly too rich to care anymore. That's where YOU come in! While we coast on our long ago achievement, you have the chance to shame us off our lazy butts by designing your very own Simpsons character! (Come up with a great name and catchphrase, plus a brief description, and if you're selected as the winner, we'll bring you to Los Angeles to meet with an actual artist from THE SIMPSONS who will bring your character to life in the episode currently planned for January 31, 2010). Come on, people show us how it's supposed to be done. You'll have the satisfaction of creating a character seen by millions. And we'll have the satisfaction of not having to do our jobs."   

Homer couldn't have said it better,



Secret Lives of Husbands and Wives
Simon & Schuster/Pocket
(ISBN: 9781439173176)

Look for it in bookstores

September 2010