Cheese, Eggs, and The Truth
Okay. So this week alone:
1. I had a new book come out.
2. I had an article on Huffington Post.
3. I had to remind myself of the famous Janeane Garofalo quote from The Truth About Cats & Dogs:“You can love your pets. But just don’t loooooove your pets…”
4. Glee had its season finale.
5. Someone named a chicken after me.
6. I had a blooper trailer come out on YouTube where I got attacked by a vampire a million times and consequently said a million swears (don’t worry, they’re blocked out).
I know. Check it out:
Here are some tips on what NOT to do if you want to make a Super Ultra Terrific Book Trailer in your own home:
1. DON’T put an ad on Craigslist saying that you’re making multiple book trailers about vampires. Because that will be who will answer your ad: Real life vampires. Who will want to know if you can pay them in your blood.
2. DON’T think you’re not going to get tackled.
3. A LOT.
4. DON’T think you will be done in a snap. There will be a LOT of takes due to laughing/wincing/swearing.
5. DON’T think it won’t be messy. My original suggestion for the ending of the First Trailer (below) was, “Fake blood could spurt up on the camera lens!” I never said, “A stunt man could tackle me, and then spit fake blood all over me, ruining my new shirt and sweater combo from Banana Republic.”
Instead, Brady, the director, handed me some padding and a tube and said, “Stuff these down your pants.”
In the end, he was so right though:
I had to do tons of research for Insatiable. And it turns out that many times the things we love—such as, for instance, cheese—have surprising, even disturbing origins (in the case of cheese, once you do know where it comes from, you may wish you didn’t).
The HuffPo piece I wrote is about how often we don’t know where these things—even very popular things, such as cheese, and, oh, vampires—come from.
The first rich, sexy vampire in literary history? He has an even stranger origin story than cheese. Read my revealing exposé of the origins of the first rich, sexy vampire in literature here!
Finding out how—and why—things become popular is something I’ll admit I’m a little obsessed with. I think it’s because we didn’t have cable or a VCR (or even People Magazine) in my house until I was practically in college.
No, these guys aren’t vampires. They’re just some of the sexiest men alive (according to People Magazine).
I just love it when everyone is excited about the same thing at the same time. Like sexy guys. Or e-readers. I’ve fondled them all. I love the way they feel! So nice.
But I read in the bathtub or at the pool. What if I drop them in?
But He Who Shall Not Be Named In This Blog is hooked. He LOVES his iPad (which I bought him as a present for putting up with me).
So how psyched was I when someone sent a link to show me that Insatiable was a featured book on iBooks?
OK, for this I might convert. But what if I drop it in the water?
There’s something so bonding about everyone loving the same thing at the same time. For instance, when I was in South Africa on a book tour two years ago, they were building all the hotels and stadiums in preparation for the World Cup soccer tournament which is on right now. Everyone was already super stoked about it (the cab drivers, the waiters, the people in my publishing house, my readers, EVERYONE).
That’s why I love pop culture: It brings people together.
Obviously people have been excited/scared about vampires for a VERY long time (as far back as the ancient Hebrews and Greeks). It’s fun to put your own spin on things that everyone is talking about. With Insatiable coming out this week, my favorite comment so far has been Jen Rothschild’s, which mentions that it contains “nuns kicking more vampire ass than Buffy.”
I’m so glad someone noticed the nuns! Mine belong to the Order of St. Clare. St. Clare is the patron saint of television. I thought this was particularly fitting, since Meena (the book’s heroine) writes for a TV show (named Insatiable). And of course, TV is my favorite source of pop culture.
You can buy your own St. Clare at Archee McPhee. My mom keeps hers on top of the TV. She swears it wards off the cable going out (such as, during the Glee finale which I haven’t seen yet because I was traveling. Don’t tell me what happened)!
St. Clare became the patron saint of TV after she became too bed ridden to attend mass. One of her miracles (you have to have at least 3 to be named a saint) was that the masses would magically appear on the wall of her convent cell. She could watch them from bed!
This was especially miraculous because it happened in the 1200s, before TV was even invented.
If you want to know how I know all this stuff, it’s because I was raised Catholic. I know TONS of saint stuff. I was going to include a Know Your Saints section in the back of the book but it got too late. Maybe I’ll put it on the Insatiable page!
My patron saint is Joan of Arc. I found this awesome necklace from this seller on Etsy, and have been wearing it ever since.
I chose Joan of Arc because she kicked butt while leading the French army. She’s also mentioned in Insatiable. Like Meena, the book’s heroine, Joan could foretell the future. But (also like Meena) when she tried to tell people, no one believed her (so she was burned at the stake at age 19 for witchcraft).
This necklace seems to be kicking butt, too (or maybe it’s just the book) since Insatiable‘s debut week has been fantastic! It’s been getting tons of great press, like this piece from The Omaha Herald and these videos from Daily Dish and Womans Day.
I also love this cute review on Lauren’s Crammed Bookshelf, not to mention this one from Girls in the Stacks and this hilarious interview from the “slumber party” I had with the fun girls at ForeverYoungAdult (they’re over 21 and like cocktails with their books).
But what can compare to being told I’ve had a chicken named after me?
How amazing is Wendy from Good Egg, who has also interviewed (and named chickens for) the likes of Jodi Picoult and Judy Blume? I was so excited to do this interview with her and have a chicken named after me . . .
. . . especially because, living in Key West where chickens roam the streets freely, I have a lot of day-to-day interactions with chickens (generally involving my husband’s cat, Slutty-McSlut-A-Lot, who likes to chase them out of our yard).
Do I want my own chickens? I sort of do (and I’m sure Slutty would love it).
Although I would have to find a chicken-sitter for when I went out of town, like I did this week, to see a family member I hadn’t seen in THREE YEARS. When you have pets it’s hard to just take off and leave. That’s when I always think about Janeane’s line from The Truth About Cats & Dogs:
“This is a good time to talk about limits: You can love your pets. But just don’t loooooove your pets…”
(Remember, when the guy calls in to her radio show and says his cat won’t stop licking him and he just lets it?)
It’s hard to take off and leave when you’re self-employed (and love your job), too. Sometimes I like to change Janeane’s quote (in my head) to:
“You can love your books. But just don’t loooooove your books…”
I wish teachers would make aspiring writers memorize this quote. I missed out on a lot of fun events in high school (and even middle school) because I chose to stay home and “finish one more chapter” of whatever crazy Jane Eyre or Star Wars fan fiction I was working on instead of going out.
Always remember that quote above, aspiring writers! LEARN IT. LIVE IT. It’s OK to love your book, but it’s never OK to looooove your book. PEOPLE are more important than BOOKS!
In the meantime, I plan on finding out how more things are made (such as cheese), and where they come from (chickens!) and especially what makes them popular (big daddy of the rich sexy vampires? Lord Bryon).
Finding out this stuff never seems to spoil my enjoyment of it. It just makes me crazy to know more!
Stay tuned for more results of my research . . . . I promise to keep the swearing to a minimum.