March 26, 2012

Dear 30-somethings...

Dear 30-somethings (and 20-somethings and even 40-somethings), revel in it now because it's not going to last forever; the thick, lustrous hair, the firm butt, the dewy skin (free of age spots), the jaw line you can bounce a quarter off of, the flat stomach...ah, the list goes on. Appreciate it, even if you hate the way you look because you're never going to look better than you do right now. Oh, you might lose weight, you might build muscle, you might learn how to dress better, but the bottom line is when you're my age you're going to look at pictures from now and say, "Wow, I was cute. Why didn't I know that?"
So my question is, why didn't my mother tell me this? And if she had would it have helped or hurt? Once she told me she never felt old inside her head, but she never talked about the physicality of getting old. Maybe it didn't bother her. Can that possibly be? Did her generation simply accept it? I never heard her and my aunts commiserating about their sagging jowls and thinning hair, or feeling bad that men didn't pay attention to them any more. But I have to say, ALL my girlfriends talk about it. We obsess over it, fixate on it, get depressed about it, and we look waaaaaaaaaaay better than our moms did at our age. What's up with that? Did we think we were going to look young forever?
What will GenX, GenY and the millennials expect? Do they think they're going to find the fountain of youth before they get here? Thing is, they probably will. Well, all I can say is, get on it - I'm not getting any younger here.

March 24, 2012

Cascabel at Lookingglass Theatre - Theatre Review

Cascabel is a fantastic show at Lookingglass, a theatre group that does amazing, creative, out of the ordinary work. This production gives new meaning to the term 'dinner theater.' This is not your grandma's dinner theater with an iceberg lettuce salad and mostacciolli or fried chicken. This is food from Rick Bayless. He's cooking (right) as you're seated at long communal tables set up in front of the stage. The food is part of the story, almost a character in the play, as Bayless plays the cook who tries to win the heart of the boarding house owner.
This show is Cirque du Soleil crossed with Top Chef and Dancing With the Stars. We knew Bayless could cook but who knew he could act? And dance. He's a very elegant man (and looks much younger in person than he does on TV) with some graceful moves on the dance floor. He doesn't do any of the amazing acrobatics and high-wire stuff, but he does a beautiful Salsa (below). 
The tickets are pricey but it's an event you don't want to miss if you're into theater and food. And what a great combo when it's done right.

March 23, 2012

Never Argue With a Woman Who Reads

One morning, the husband returns the boat to their lakeside cottage after several hours of fishing and decides to take a nap. Although not familiar with the lake, the wife decides to take the boat out. She motors out a short distance, anchors, puts her feet up, and begins to read her book. The peace and solitude are magnificent. 
Along comes a fish and game warden in his boat. He pulls up alongside the woman and says, "Good morning, ma'am. What are you doing?" 
"Reading a book," she replies, thinking, isn't that obvious
"You're in a restricted fishing area," he informs her. 
"I'm sorry, officer, but I'm not fishing. I'm reading." 
"Yes, but I see you have all the equipment. For all I know you could start at any moment. I'll have to take you in and write you up." 
"If you do that, I'll have to charge you with sexual assault," says the woman. 
"But I haven't even touched you," says the game warden. 
"That's true," says the woman, "but you have all the equipment. For all I know you could start at any moment." 
"Have a nice day ma'am," he says and leaves. 

MORAL:  Never argue with a woman who reads. It's likely she can also think. 

March 19, 2012

Robocalling/Telemarketing - What's the Difference?

Thank god the primary is tomorrow. I'm fed up with the robocalls and political crap-mail. I've never received so much. Ever. Probably not even if you tallied up every political call/political mail I've ever received in my lifetime.
Why, do you think? Why this year?
And why don't political calls count as telemarketing? I suppose because they're not asking for money but really, legislators need to rethink this. ADD THEM TO THE DO NOT CALL REGISTRY.
I've only voted in one primary in my whole life. The reason? I don't like having to declare a party. I virtuously consider myself an independent. And with pride I would tell you that I actually voted for a Republican for president. Once. I won't tell you who because it's so embarrassing.
That aside, I'm open to being impressed by a Republican. Really. I am. Thing is, the chances of that are so slim. Particularly this year because, truly, is there a candidate who turns you people on? 
Rick Santorum? Please. With all his talk of Satan...can you take him seriously?
Mitt Romney?  He's cute. And I'm all for cute but is he cute enough to be president? I'm thinking not.
Newt? Well, there's no cuteness factor there. He's smart and that's a good thing, but does he have a shot in hell?
I may or may not vote tomorrow. I actually did download the ballot so there's  a possibility. And I'm an independent, of course, so it may be a last minute decision which ballot to ask for. Oh, oops...did I forget to download the Republican ballot?

March 13, 2012

I Need To Do A Book Video

But how do I compete with this?? Does anyone have a horse I can borrow?

Cute Cat Video

This is very amusing even if you're not a cat lover. About 20 seconds is all you need to watch because nothing else happens, but check it out.

March 12, 2012

How to Pre-Order Your Copy of What More Could You Wish For

It's easy! You can order a print or Kindle copy online at or Barnes&Noble, or click on the IndieNext logo to find an independent book seller near you.
Simple, right?

March 8, 2012

Cookies to Die For. And Easy.

Okay, these are so delicious and the easiest damn cookies ever. But there's a catch. 
See that picture, how pretty they look? Well mine don't look like that and I should have taken a picture when they came out of the oven because it was like an asphalt road of lace cookies. Here's the thing…when you're putting them on the cookie sheets make them really tiny, even smaller than you think you should, and be sure to place them reeeeeaaaally far apart because they spread like a son-of-a-bitch.
So mine don't look beautiful but if you tried one you WOULD NOT CARE. They are heavenly.
Make them. Now.

Chocolate and Coconut Lace Cookies 
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sweetened, flaked coconut
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 (4-ounce) bar bittersweet (62 percent cacao) chocolate, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
Place an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix together the sugar, coconut, melted butter, flour, vanilla, and salt.
Using a 1/2-ounce cookie scoop or a tablespoon, scoop 6 balls of dough, 3 to 4 inches apart, on each baking sheet. Lightly flatten the tops of the dough. Cook until golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Allow the cookies to cool on the parchment paper, about 15 minutes.
Place the chocolate in a bowl and place over a pan of barely simmering water. (I melted the chocolate in the microwave - just be sure not to over-do it.) Stir until the chocolate has melted. Using a fork, (a spoon works better) drizzle the tops of the cookies with the melted chocolate. Freeze the cookies until the chocolate has set, about 5 minutes. Remove the cookies from the freezer and store in an airtight container at room temperature. Cook's Note: If the cookies have baked into one another use a knife or metal spatula to separate the cookies (this is a joke - make them tiny and avoid trying to separate them).  Then allow to cool.

March 6, 2012

A Mug of Chocolate Cake??

I haven't made this yet but I couldn't help sharing it because the picture is so beautiful and it looks so easy. It's for those days when you HAVE TO HAVE something sweet (most days, for me) and there's nothing in the house.
It's chocolate cake for one, done in a microwave, for pete's sake!
Try it. Let me know how it is. Or better yet, I'LL make it and let YOU know!
And check out the great blog: SomeKitchenStories where I found it.

March 4, 2012

Some favorite writing quotes

  • The road to hell is paved with adverbs. --Stephen King
  • Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own. -- Charles Scribner, Jr.
  • Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing. --Benjamin Franklin
  • Planning to write is not writing. Outlining, researching, talking to people about what you're doing, none of that is writing. Writing is writing.--E. L. Doctorow
  • There are three rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are. --Somerset Maugham

March 1, 2012

The Dream Keeps Getting Better

Remember the final scene of Bob Newhart's show where he woke up in bed with his wife from the original program (Suzanne Pleshette) and it's revealed that the whole show, 7 or 8 seasons, had been a dream?
Sometimes I feel like that's what's happening and I'm going to wake up from this dream. Jeez, I hope not.
My dream came true last year when St. Martin's Press bought my book, and it just keeps getting better. Yesterday my editor told me they sold the German rights - before the book's even published! It'll take a while for it to be translated into German but in about a year I'll see the German version of What More Could You Wish For (can anybody translate that?).
So that means I'll be an internationally published author. Oh my god. See what I mean about the dream?
I feel like a rock star.
Please don't wake me up.