Meg's Blog

Don’t Be Like Me

Okay, so I know there was a mandatory evacuation for the Florida Keys in expectation of Hurricane Ike. But I didn’t go. It’s a good thing I don’t write for Random House!

There are numerous reasons why I didn’t leave, and not all of them have to do with the totally cute shoes I ordered that are scheduled to arrive this week by Fed Ex.

A lot of them have to do with a hurricane being preferable to enduring hours in a car or plane with two screaming cats (I didn’t say my reasons for not leaving were good ones), one of whom is an outdoor cat who barely knows how to use a litter box.

Okay, I know I’m being totally irresponsible AND breaking the law right now. If I had kids I completely would have done the right thing (in spite of the fact that the shoes are TOTALLY cute).

But come on….

The Shoes

But instead all I have are a couple of psychotic cats and a husband who is totally mad at me right now because he thinks we should have left, and that we’re probably going to end up sitting on our roof with a sheet that says SOS….

…although that won’t happen because the current local storm models say Ike’s HOPEFULLY going to just skirt us (although it will be very bad for poor Cuba). And besides, I am not letting him write on our nice sheets!

The thing is, we can always get in the car and start driving tomorrow if things take a turn for the worse.

Well, he can, since I don’t have a license. Yet.

Anyway, I promise to totally live blog the hurricane for you for as long as we have power/Internet! Especially because….

I’m going to be on Center Stage at BarnesandNoble.com all week! That’s right, you can come chat live with me (as long as I have power) here anytime you want, and I’ll reply! Come say hi and chat with the fun folks at Barnes and Noble Center Stage (and myself) about Queen of Babble Gets Hitched and whatever else you want. Don’t be shy! I’ll be there until the 12th.

Meanwhile, the cover contest is still going on. Don’t give up! I’ve had many hilarious entries!

And don’t forget the Video Music Awards are on tonight! Paramore is scheduled to perform!

I would give ANYTHING for Britney to have a do over and redeem herself from last year! Fingers crossed! GO BRIT!!!! YOU CAN DO IT!!!!

And for those of you haven’t noticed already, I’m offering up some truly golden Writing Tips at www.seventeen.com in honor of their new writing contest. You do not want to miss out on these. There will be plenty more where those came from…I’ll be blogging occasionally at Seventeen now as a judge for this year’s contest, so check back!

And for those of you who keep asking for a sequel to my books All American Girl and Ready or Not, there’s a kinda sorta one in the new book, Our White House: Looking In, Looking Out, which I wrote for the White House project, a non-profit project to which many authors contributed to raise awareness about…well, the White House and its historical significance!

My story features Samantha Madison, but it’s more of a fantasy piece—she falls asleep and maybe goes back through time…maybe to the War of 1812 in which the White House was burned down by the British. Fact! It really happened!

And maybe she helps Dolly Madison, a First Lady who rocked hard, escape, and keep the world’s most famous portrait of George Washington from falling into the hands of the enemy. Fact! Also happened!

Okay, shut up, it’s good. You know you want to read it. And the money goes to a good cause. And check it out, the book just got a starred review from School Library Journal!

NATIONAL CHILDREN’S BOOK AND LITERACY ALLIANCE. Our White House: Looking in, Looking Out. illus. by authors. 256p. Candlewick. Sept. 2008. RTE $35. ISBN 978-0-7636-2067-7
Gr 3-8–More than 100 authors and illustrators contributed to this wide-ranging collection of short pieces about the First Family residence. Most participants are creators of books for youth, along with a sprinkling of other figures, such as historian David McCullough, and actual White House occupants. Arranged in general chronological order, the chapters are delightfully varied in form, tone, and subject matter. They include straightforward history, brief essays, personal narratives, and even fantasy, as in Meg Cabot’s lighthearted time-travel story. The handsome layout and excellent-quality illustrations provide strong appeal. The pairing of words and art is often inspired, as in Maybelle Mayer’s paper doll cutouts from 1938 that accompany Nancy Willard’s poem about White House dresses. There are powerful visual moments as well, such as the dazzling series of spreads featuring visual interpretations of Roosevelt’s “Four Freedoms,” each by a different artist. Many segments convey personal details that humanize the presidential families, such as Virginia Euwer Wolff’s introduction to the musical sophistication of the Tafts and Anita Silvey’s look at Jackie Kennedy’s literary career. Humor plays a role too, as in Steven Kellogg’s artistic rendering of an imagined “Best in Show” contest among White House pets. Some readers will progress straight through from Jane Yolen’s imagined conversation between John and Abigail Adams to the first National Book Festival in 2001, while others may browse and jump about; either way, this entertaining introduction to the White House is full of fascinating information, challenging ideas, and appealing artwork.

Yay! Don’t miss it!

Okay, I have to go finish some worky type stuff so I can Fed Ex it while we still have Fed Ex. And power. And also before the VMA’s start. STAY TUNED FOR MORE UPDATES!!!!

Keep those cover contest entries coming!


More later.

Much love,