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Meg has published almost forty novels for younger readers as well as adults, including The Princess Diaries series (on which two hit feature films by Disney were based), The Mediator series, and the 1-800-WHERE-R-YOU series (on which the television series, Missing, currently being broadcast Saturday nights on the Lifetime network, is based).
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What do authors Alexander McCall Smith, R.L. Stine, John Green, Ann M. Martin, Cornelia Funke, Jeanne DuPrau, Mia Farrow, Karen Hesse, Joyce Carol Oates, Nate Powell, Sofia Quintero, Francisco X. Stork, Cynthia Voigt, Nikki Giovanni, Marilyn Nelson, Naomi Shihab Nye, Gary Soto, Jane Yolen, and me have in common?
We all have a book out today! It’s called What You Wish For.
We each contributed a story or poem for this book to the The Book Wish Foundation for free, so that 100% of their proceeds would go to the UN Refugee Agency!
That means if you buy a copy, you’ll be helping to build libraries all the way across the world, where they barely have any books, let alone libraries, or even pizza.
And if you buy a copy through this link, 100% of their net profits from the sale will go directly to the Book Wish Foundation, so they’ll get even more funds than they would if you bought a copy anywhere else.
So what are you going to do today? I think you should make sure you get a copy of What You Wish For, which contains “captivating, inspiring, sometimes creepy and ofttimes funny stories and poems” that “offer hope about things we all wish for.”
Not to mention, my story has romance AND pizza in it, both of which the world needs a lot more of (it goes without saying it needs more books and libraries).
Thanks for reading!
Sunday will be the tenth anniversary of 9/11. For those of you who don’t know, my husband (also known as He Who Shall Not Be Named In This Blog) was working in an office building across the street from the Twin Towers, and was sitting at his desk when the first plane hit.
I’m going to re-post an entry I wrote a while ago about the experience my husband and I shared on 9/11, not because I think it’s so well-written or anything, but because I think the memories from that day shouldn’t be forgotten.
But I also know that some people come to this blog looking for an escape from bad memories, not to relive them (hey, that’s why I come here, too). So for all of you, I’m also posting a link to this Back To School quiz. May the Force be with you.
For the rest of you, here is this:
On 9/11 I got woken up in my Greenwich Village apartment by a phone call from my friend Jen. I was still asleep when the first plane hit. 9/11/2001 was one of those rare days where sloth was rewarded. I know several people who are still alive today because they were late to work that morning, or stopped to get coffee to help them feel a little less groggy.
“Look out your window,” Jen said.
That is when I saw the smoke.
I called my husband’s office first thing. I couldn’t see his building from our apartment, but I could see the building ACROSS from his, which was the Trade Center, and black smoke was billowing out of it.
What was happening? I wondered. Jen didn’t know. No one knew.
Was he all right? I knew he worked on a really high floor, and it looked as if whatever had happened to that tower across from his, it had to be happening right in front of his office window.
I couldn’t get through to him. I couldn’t make any outgoing calls from my phone that day. For some reason, people could call me, but I couldn’t call anyone else.
It turned out this was due to the massive volume of calls going on in my part of the city that day.
But I didn’t know that then.
Sirens started up. It was the engine from the firehouse across the street from my apartment building. It was a very small firehouse. All the guys used to sit outside it on folding chairs on nice days, joshing with the neighbors who were walking their dogs, and with my doormen. The old ladies on my street always brought them cookies.
9/11/01 was a very, very nice day. The sky was a very pure blue, not a single cloud, and it was warm outside.
Now all the firemen from the station across from my apartment building were rushing out to the fire downtown.
Every last one of them would be dead in an hour. But none of us knew that then.
I turned on New York 1, the local news channel for New York City. Pat Kiernan, my favorite newscaster, was saying that a plane had hit one of the towers of the World Trade Center.
Weird, I thought. Was the pilot drunk? How could someone not see a building that big, and run into it with a plane?
It was right then that Luz, my housekeeper, showed up. I’d forgotten it was Tuesday, the day she comes to clean. When she saw what I was watching, she looked worried.
“I just dropped my son off at his college,” she said. “It’s right next to the World Trade Center.”
“My husband works across the street from the World Trade Center,” I said.
“Is he all right?” Luz wanted to know. “What’s happening down there?”
“I don’t know,” I said. “I can’t reach him.”
Luz tried to call her son on his cell phone. She, too, could not get through.
We didn’t know that our cell servers used towers that were located on top of the World Trade Center, and they all had stopped working.
We both stood there staring at the TV, not really knowing what to do. It was as we were watching that something weird happened on the TV, right before our eyes:
Blog: Meg Cabot
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So roughly half of the coastal US is under a hurricane watch or warning right now (except, strangely, the parts of the US that are used to it, such as Florida, which is where I am right now).
Having been through numerous hurricanes since I moved here in 2004, I feel qualified to give some advice to people going through one right now. If you need proof, just click on this entry from my Hurricane Diaries.
You can read many similar posts just by putting the word “hurricane” in the search engine of my blog. Though why you’d want to, I can’t imagine. It’s just more of the same!
Because the worst part about being in a storm isn’t the fear that your house might get swept away, because most likely that isn’t going to happen (unless you live on the beach and you didn’t evacuate, in which case, you should probably leave now, if it’s safe to drive).
No, the worst part is the clean up (especially if the power was out for a long time and the stuff in your fridge gets stinky) . . .
. . . and the abject boredom as the rain pours down, the power flickers, and everyone realizes they’re in no real danger . . . except of losing their minds because there’s nothing to do (hopefully you’ve been to the store in advance and stocked up on cheese popcorn and Gummi Bears and awesome reads.* Oh, and a flashlight. And, if you are over 21, beer and wine. And ice)!
If that’s the case, you’ve come to the right place! (Assuming you charged your batteries and can still read this).
Because here’s a cool quizz I made up to keep everyone stuck inside, riding out the storm, occupied and having fun!
So get out a pen and try to figure out . . . .
WHICH 80s TEEN FILM HEROINE ARE YOU?
Your friends would describe you as:
When dressing for school in the morning, you make sure:
A) Everything looks cute
B) Everything matches
C) Everything is black
D) Everything is within easy reach of the bed so you can sleep in a little later after the alarm goes off
Your idea of a perfect Saturday afternoon is:
A) Shopping at the mall
B) Getting a head start on your history paper
C) Painting a self-portrait
D) Skating in the park
You’re packing to go to camp for the summer. You take:
a. Your yearbook
b. Your Powerbook
c. Your poetry notebook
d. You would so not go to summer camp.
Your favorite kind of movie is:
A. One that has kissing
B. One that is historically accurate
C. One that has a serial killer
D. One with explosions
Your ideal boyfriend is:
A. Sensitive loner
B. Brainy underachiever
C. Jock with a heart of gold
D. Artistic type
What does your favorite purse look like?
B. Anything big enough to fit all your books
C. Anything big enough to fit all your sketchpads/knitting needles
D. Purse? Who needs a purse when you have pockets?
Your preferred eyeliner color:
D. Eyeliner? Yuck.
You favorite TV show is:
A. Jersey Shore
B. Masterpiece Theater
C. You only watch movies
Ready? Count up all your As, Bs, Cs, and Ds!
If you answered mostly As, you are:
Congratulations! You are a PROM PRINCESS. The 80s teen film heroine you are most like is MOLLY RINGWALD from THE BREAKFAST CLUB. Popular and pretty, you are universally liked, but long to b
Right now we’re in what is commonly referred to as the Dog Days of Summer.
I used to think people called this time of year “the dog days” because it’s so hot, even dogs don’t want to move from their nice comfy spot in the shade.
But it’s actually because historically, August was when Sirius, the Dog Star, was the brightest star in the sky.
So everyone back in olden times thought Sirius was to blame for bringing all the heat.
They didn’t know about meteorology and seasons and stuff like that. They also thought the reason winter came was because Hades had kidnapped Persephone, the daughter of goddess of the harvest, and was forcing her to live with him in the underworld. So the goddess of the harvest was so mad, she was making it cold.
Oh, old timey people. You make me laugh.
So what the old timey people would do when it got REALLY hot was find a nice fat dog, then slit its throat as a sacrifice to Sirius, to make him be less mad and stop it from being so hot.
(Author’s note: There was no ASPCA back then to stop people from doing stupid things like this).
And guess what? This did not even work! It stayed hot. And someone was minus a dog.
But this is how the Dog Days of Summer got its name.
So if you’re feeling a lack of motivation or just generally blah right now, you should know that you’re not alone. It’s not the fault of anyone’s dog (not even Sirius, which due to gradual shifts in the earth’s rotation, is no longer the brightest star in the sky during August).
But these ARE still the Dog Days.
But don’t worry, because there are a LOT of people working to try to get us out of our doldrums right now (thank God, because when I’m done trying to work on my current project every day, all I want to do is have a nice cocktail and be entertained by someone else’s project).
Here are some other people’s projects that I’m enjoying right now (I’d tell you about mine, but since it’s the Dog Days, I’d just fall asleep while doing so):
After long and exhaustive study, I’ve determined that one of the reasons the shows on the USA channel are so entertaining is because the network makes a conscious effort to match the color of their sets to their main characters’ eyes.
Case in point, Necessary Roughness, USA’s new show about a single mom sports psychologist who works for a pro-football team in New York City:
As you can tell from the above photo, this show is already good because every week Dr. Dani Santino (who just got divorced from her cheating scumbag of a husband) has to solve the mystery of what is wrong with her patient (always a new patient every week, always some kind of athlete, or married to one), and also has to juggle the guys she works with, pictured above, some of whom are kind of hot for her (the one from Buffy and one from Gilmore Girls)!
(I’m sort of mad I didn’t think of this show, because I was into sports psychology as far back as 2004, as you can tell from this blog entry. DANG!)
But the important thing is that in almost every scene, USA Network makes sure actress Callie Thorne’s golden brown hair and eyes match something golden brown on the set, usually leaves, so the show has a sort of warm, golden, autumnal feel to it. Don’t believe me? LOOK:
I hope you aren’t working right now. Work is forbidden (for real, by proclamation of the mayor of Bloomington, Indiana) on July 31st, which is Meg Cabot Day.
So today if you want to blow off work and spend the WHOLE DAY floating around in a pool or lake on a raft, or just sitting in the shade or AC, reading books (specifically mine, but they can be books by anyone. I’m easy like that), you don’t have to feel guilty about it.
Not that you ever would or should feel guilty about reading for pleasure. It’s just that I know some of you have gotten in trouble for reading when you aren’t supposed to be, because I’ve gotten your letters, emails, Facebook messages, and Tweets about it.
But today if anyone says anything like, “OMG, you didn’t even make the bed!” or “Um, where are the TPS reports?” you have a built in excuse for why those things are not done:
You’re legally obligated to spend the whole day lazing around, reading.
Here’s the official proclamation I received from the mayor of Bloomington (my place of birth) on this day seven years ago (at a book signing at the Bloomington Barnes and Noble):
WHEREAS, Meg Cabot was born in Bloomington, Indiana and spent her childhood in pursuit of air conditioning, which she found at the Monroe County Public Library; and
WHEREAS, Meg whiled away many hours in the library, reading the complete works of Jane Austen, Judy Blume, and Barbara Cartland; and
WHEREAS, armed with a Fine Arts degree from Indiana University, she moved to New York City intent on an illustration career, but when that failed to materialize, got a job as the assistant manager of an undergraduate dormitory at New York University where she wrote novels on the weekends; and
WHEREAS, Meg still calls New York City home, along with her IU graduate husband and one eyed alley cat named Henrietta; and,
WHEREAS, Meg has published over thirty novels for younger readers as well as adults, including The Princess Diaries series, The Mediator series, and 1-800-WHERE-R-YOU; and
WHEREAS, Lifetime network is making a series from 1-800-WHERE-R-YOU where students attend Ernie Pyle High School, a reference back to Bloomington, home to IU’s Ernie Pyle School of Journalism; and
WHEREAS, film rights to The Princess Diaries were sold to Disney, and a feature length film based on the book was released in August 2001; and
WHEREAS, Meg’s has an upcoming book, Teen Idol, set in Indiana, and is scheduled to be the lunch speaker at the Girl Scout Leadership meeting at Indiana University.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Mark Kruzan, Mayor of Bloomington, Indiana, do hereby declare Saturday,
July 31 as
MEG CABOT DAY
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused to be affixed the Seal of the City of Bloomington this 15th day of July, 2004.
Admittedly, some of the info in the above proclamation is slightly out of date (for instance, Teen Idol, as well as some other books by me, have already come out, and the Lifetime series Missing isn’t on anymore, alas, in most countries).
But the important thing is that you have a good Meg Cabot Day! You deserve it for being such devoted readers, whether you’re just starting out with the Allie Finkle series, or have taken the plunge with Insatiable and Overbite or Abandon, or whether you’ve been reading my books since the first one came out in 1998, when I was writing them unde
Hey, here’s something we don’t have around here very often: A guest post! And it’s by a guy!
It’s from author Christopher Moore, whose awesome new graphic novel, The Griff, is in stores now! In case you didn’t know, I did a guest post for Chris a few weeks ago (click here to read it. It’s all true. Please note that the title of this post is also by Chris).
I love Christopher Moore, not just because he’s a good author, a gentleman, and the vampires he writes about don’t sparkle (NOT THAT THERE IS ANYTHING WRONG WITH VAMPIRES WHO SPARKLE. It’s genetic, I know sparkling is not a choice), but because his books were once MEDICALLY PRESCRIBED by a physician, and as you know, I fully respect medical authority (such as Hank Med on USA Network, and of course, Dr. George Clooney).
Here’s Christopher Moore’s guest post. Pay attention–it could save your life:
The first time I ever saw Meg Cabot she was being chased across a banquet room at Book Expo America by Lemony Snicket, who was trying to steal her tiara.
(Note from Meg: At first I thought, “This is so funny, but sadly isn’t true,” and then I remembered it IS true, and one of the less bizarre things that have happened at Book Expo, which is why I forgot about it.)
My first thought was, “Boy, Meg Cabot can sure run fast in tall shoes.”
And my second thought was, “There’s no way that tiara is going to fit Lemony Snicket, so I hope she gets away.”
Meg got away.
And later, at another Book Expo America, I actually met Meg, who was sitting in a hotel restaurant with a bunch of sneaky-looking publishing people.
Suddenly, I had to go rescue a girl who got her prom dress caught in the escalator by cleverly telling the bartender to call someone who knows how to turn off the escalator before it ate the prom girl. So after that happened, I looked back at Meg, who was still sitting with the sneaky-looking publishing people and I thought, “Well, she seems nice, I hope she gets away.”
Then she asked me and my wife-like girlfriend if we wanted to join her for dinner, but I said, “No thanks, we have a thing to go to,” (because we did) “but may I suggest that you slip off your tall shoes.” The people she was sitting with looked like they were faster than Lemony Snicket and I thought she would need the extra speed.*
(*Note from Meg: What I especially love about this story is that some of the people I was sitting with that night included my mom and R.L. Stine–of “Goosebumps” fame–and of course Bob’s wife, Jane. I agree, however, that they were probably quite sneaky-looking, particularly Bob Stine, who was Thrillermaster at this year’s Thrillerfest in NYC. What could be sneakier?)
(There was another time when a doctor prescribed my books to Meg’s husband because he was too cheerful and needed to get more snark in his diet, which is my specialty, but I don’t remember the details of that because I had a cold at the time and had taken a lot of Nyquil.)
(Note from Meg: All of the above is also true. And note what I mentioned about such bizarre things happening at Book Expo that I forgot about all the other stuff, like Lemony Snicket trying to steal my tiara. Like Peter Yarrow playing a special solo round of Puff the Magic Dragon exclusively to Julie Andrews in the green room before breakfast at 7AM. Yes, this happened. I was there.)
Anyway, Meg got away, and as you know, went on to write several thousand awesome novels.
Blog: Meg Cabot
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Those of you who follow this blog know that I’ve spent this summer on the road. And I still have three signings left! Bookworks in Albuquerque on Sunday, July 17th; University Village Barnes and Noble in Seattle on Monday, July 18th; the Author Series at the Woodmark Hotel (also in Seattle) on Tuesday, July 19th; and a final appearance at Books and Books in Coral Gables, Florida on Saturday, July 23rd.
Aside from being really sick of the clothes in my suitcase, and missing my cat, Henrietta (He Who Shall Not Be Named in the Blog says she’s doing fine), spending the summer visiting our great nation’s bookstores and libraries has been an interesting experience, and I thought I’d share some of my observations:
Yes, We Can . . . .
. . . depend upon the kindness of strangers! For the most part, the people of this country will bend over backwards to aid a passenger in distress, particularly one who is wandering around in a Dramamine-induced daze, like I am most of the time.
Members of our nation’s military (who can be found in every airport at every hour of the day, not on duty, but trying to get to their destinations like the rest of us) are particularly kind, as illustrated by the nice young man who pointed out that I had just accidentally entered the men’s bathroom, not the ladies room.
“I do it all the time, ma’am,” he told me when I flusteredly apologized, even though we both knew this was a complete lie. God bless our military.
Strangers Will Even Get You Tickets to the new Harry Potter movie . . .
Like Bethany, Bonnie, Miranda, Erin, Amanda, Juliette, and Stephanie did in Tulsa! Thank you, ladies! Sorry I could not attend, but I had to leave for the airport at 5:30 the next morning. But I appreciate the thought so much! I’ll think of you when I see Harry when I get back home. I hope you had fun.
They’ll Leave You Lovely Post-Its, Letters, Cards, and even Personalize Mrs. Fields Cookies to You!
(And when I get my camera working again, I’ll show you photos of all of these things soon, I promise!)
But There is Some Bad News:
This photo isn’t the bad news. It’s from Good Day Tulsa, where I had a blast. I just had nowhere else to post it!
The bad news is that some women in airports apparently didn’t get the Human Resources memos featured in my Boy Books:
If you sprinkle when you tinkle
Be a sweetie: Wipe the seatie!
I get that the world is divided up into sitters and squatters.
But Squatters, if you must squat (and miss the seat), could you wipe it off for the next person? Thanks! Remember the words of Julie Andrews (playing Princess Mia’s royal grandmother):
I was using my best manners when I got interviewed by Minnesota Public Radio, but I still violated COPA laws by revealing that the inspiration for Overbite and Insatiable was a hepatitis outbreak that occurred in the dorm where I used to work when some students started biting one another (thanks to thinking they were characters from Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire).
I’m on the road promoting my new book, Overbite! And I’ve got some answers to some of your most burning questions:
Q: Why is your new book called Overbite?A: Because in dating the Prince of Darkness while simultaneously working for an organization which is seeking to eradicate all demon life forms on earth, the heroine, Meena, may have bitten off more than she can chew.
Q: Where are you right now?
A: Trying to get to Maryland for Saturday’s livestream event with Nora Roberts, which ALL OF YOU CAN COME TO! Right now storms are delaying all planes, however, leaving the Nashville area!
Q: I do not understand the words coming out of your mouth.
A: I’m serious. You can come by clicking here. And you can buy books by clicking on the buy books button. Now do you understand?
Q: Can I just go to the book signing at Nora’s store?
A: Yes! I’ll be signing books in person there WITH Nora (along authors Deanna Raybourn and Leslie Kelly, and others)!
Here’s the address:
TURN THE PAGE
18 N. Main St.
Boonsboro, MD 21713
(Contact: Janeen Solberg Main Phone: 301-432-4588 firstname.lastname@example.org)
I’ve never been livestreamed before (that I know of. Who knows about some of those airport bathrooms)! So I can’t wait!
Q: In a battle between transformers and vampires, who would win?
A: This is a very good question. Maybe I should discuss it with Barbara Vey, of Publishers Weekly, during the Romance Writers of America Literacy signing (watch)
Q: Speaking of the Romance Writers of America conference, was Nora Roberts, the queen of romance, there?
A: No! She couldn’t make it! But I got to bring out the Rita (it was heavy!) for Sharon Sala, the winner of the Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award!
Q: So how WAS the Romance Writers of America conference?
A: OMG, so much fun, thanks for asking!
Not only did I get to see readers from EVERYWHERE, I got to hang out with so many fun authors, and of course host the Rita/Golden Heart awards! Here’s a little photo essay about it:
First there was the Literacy signing. So many books! Smart Bitches Who Love Trashy Books did another video about it, which rocked, as ALWAYS (I am towards the end). Watch.
Here are some amazing people who helped with all the long lines with indefatigable good cheer! LOVE THEM!
Some of you who follow me on Twitter/Facebook might recall I had some problems choosing between two dresses. So I appealed to you for help!
Thanks for helping me choose!
I can’t believe my new book Overbite is HERE!
For those of you who haven’t grabbed a copy yet, you can find it just about anywhere, (except your local church), from your local bookstore to your local Target . . . . it’s even downloadable in Kindle and Nook format!
Some of you have written to say you’ve already read and enjoyed it (and even posted glowing reviews). Thanks so much for doing your part help to spread the truth about the upcoming vampire apocalypse!
Don’t forget, I’ll be kicking off my Overbite tour TONIGHT at the NYU Bookstore (just a hop, skip, and a jump from where I used to work in the 90s) at 6:30PM, on 726 Broadway!
And for those of you who can’t make it, don’t worry, because tomorrow night, I’ll be in New Jersey (yes, I know about the terrifying news broadcasts coming from New Jersey. But I’ll do anything to save you! And it will be worth it to see your shining, living faces!)
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
BOOKS AND GREETINGS
271 Livingston ST
Northvale, NJ 07647
Because it’s going to rock.
And if all goes well, on Thursday, I’ll see you in Nashville, TN!
NASHVILLE PUBLIC LIBRARY
Tennessee Humanities Council
615 Church St
Nashville, TN 37219
Thursday, July 7, 2011
Then on Saturday, July 9, at 11AM, I’ll be taking a trip to NORA ROBERTS’ BOOKSTORE in Maryland (that will be LIVESTREAMED) followed by a live signing at noon!
TURN THE PAGE
18 N. Main St.
(Contact: Janeen Solberg
Main Phone: 301-432-4588 email@example.com)
I’ll be making lots more stops all around the country after that. You can click here to see if I’ll be coming to a town near you to rescue you from the vampire hordes!
I’ve got LOTS more to say, but right now I’ve got to get my crucifix on if I’m going to get to my first signing on time and unscathed. Check out these amazing chapter excerpts and other extras in the meantime, and see YOU soon!
HAPPY OVERBITE RELEASE DAY!
I’ve tried to put off telling you guys this for the longest time because I know a ton of you are planning on coming to NYC this summer on vacation or to see Book of Mormon (did you get tickets? Because I can’t. Not that it matters, as you’ll soon see) or for the Romance Writers of America conference, or whatever.
But it just isn’t fair. I can’t keep it to myself a second longer. I HAVE to tell you, no matter how much the truth hurts! So here goes:
Click here to view the embedded video.
In case you didn’t get that, New York City has been taken over by vampires . . .
. . . and I don’t mean Donald Trump.
Brooklyn, you’re not safe either. New Jersey, neither are you (as if you didn’t already know that from the Real Housewives).
I think Queens is probably OK, but communication from there has been a bit sketchy.
But don’t worry! My new book Overbite contains a handy guide on how to avoid vampire attacks.
The only problem is that it won’t be out until July 5. So you might want to check out the sneak peek if you plan on coming anywhere close to the northeastern corridor before then.
Here’s a short rundown, just in case your wifi conks out:
How to Enjoy Your Vacation This Summer Without Getting Your Throat Torn Out:
Avoid dark alleys.
Eat a lot of garlic.
Don’t make out with anyone you haven’t seen walking around in full daylight.
If you’re having weird dreams about the world ending, that’s because it’s going to. So go ahead: Have that second dessert! It won’t kill you. That weird guy you just met is going to.
You can join me July 5th (the day of the book’s official release) at the NYU Bookstore (across the park from the dorm where I used to work!) where I’ll be giving more detailed instructions on the coming vampire apocalypse and how we can all fight it (even though resistance is probably futile):
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
New York, NY 10003
Need more info? Contact: Yael Yisraeli
Main Phone: 212-998-4653
There will be many other stops nationwide on this tour, so don’t worry if you can’t make it to NYC! Just click here to find a stop I’ll making near you. No part of the country will be left out!
(Populations outside of the US, I’ll be visiting you soon. France, I’ll see you in December! Everyone else, stay tuned!)
And don’t take my word about all of this. Us Weekly agrees that Overbite is a summer reading essential:
And the people over at BookList and Fresh Fiction concur.
Of course Insatiable is available everywhere in paperback now, and it too has some handy hints on how to avoid vampire infestation, just in case you decide to come northeast this summer anyway!
You can find out more about both books here at BookPage (I did those drawings myself!) and also the Overbite page at my site, where Janey has been busy adding
Hello! I’m off to San Francisco, CA, Naperville, IL, and Wellesley, MA for another week of fun, adventure, and book signings!
I’d love to see you if you can come to any of the following events (they’re with This is Teen, which is an initiative through Scholastic Books to connect teens with their favorite authors and books, so I’ll be speaking and signing along with authors Libba Bray and Maggie Stiefvater). Here are the deets (details):
Monday, June 13
7:00pm – 9:00pm
Books Inc. Opera Plaza
601 Van Ness Avenue
San Francisco, CA
Please contact the store directly for details and for any event requirements/rules specific to this event: 415-776-1111
Wednesday, June 15
7:00pm – 9:00pm
Wentz Concert Hall at North Central College (hosted by Anderson’s Bookshop)
171 E. Chicago Avenue
Naperville IL 60540
Please contact the store directly for details and for any event requirements/rules specific to this event: 630-355-2665.
Thursday, June 16
7:00pm – 9:00pm
Please contact the store directly for details, location, and for any event requirements/rules specific to this event: 781-431-1160.
I’m especially excited because I spent eighth grade living in Carmel, CA (those of you familiar with the Mediator series know all about Carmel. It’s where Suze lives. I went to the Mission School, too)! We used to go up to San Francisco for special occasions. Though I’m basically just going to be there overnight, it’s still always fun to visit San Francisco and reminisce about throwing up over the ferry on the way to Alcatraz.
And of course I’m addicted to Naperville Pawn. That’s not the only reason I’m excited to be back in Naperville, IL, of course, because I love Anderson’s Bookshop.
But it’s a new reason to love it, because I caught a marathon of the new show on TLC about a couple of pawn shop divas (and I couldn’t BELIEVE it when they turned away that Judith Lieber clutch, so I have some things to discuss with everyone in Naperville, besides my new book Abandon of course).
And I have NEVER. BEEN. TO. BOSTON (let alone Wellesley).
I know. Home of Robert B. Parker’s (may he rest in peace) world famous detective, Spenser, and every Ben Affleck character in every movie he’s ever made (except Armageddon). Don’t get me started on how excited I am.
So I hope I’ll see some of you at one of the above stops, and if not, there’s always:
The Romance Writers of America conference , which starts at the hugest signing of all time at the Times Square Marriott in New York City on Tuesday, June 28 (open to the public)!
I know. I can barely contain myself. But more on this in a later blog because they’re about to call my flight!
In the meantime, here’s a secret: She Went All The Way is being offered for a limited time at 4.99 on all sorts of eBook sites!
And look out for some minor changes to this site in the coming days (in other words, if it’s down, don’t panic), and be sure to click here to see if I’ll be stopping by a town near you later this month (or even this July for my Overbite tour)!
(Have you see
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Hi, everybody! I’m home from my events in New York! They were tons of fun. Such great turn outs! Thanks to everyone who attended, and don’t forget there’ll be even MORE events the week after next in California, Illinois, and Massachusetts (check out the exact dates and times here).
After my New York signings I took the train down to Maryland to visit my mom and her boyfriend (you might remember him as the teacher from The Princess Diaries. Yes, my mom and my teacher are now living together! How fun for meeeee)!
I used my time on the train (and the plane ride home) to
never stop stabbing my eyes out answer some of the questions those of you who haven’t had a chance to attend any of the This is Teen signings yet have been Tweeting and Facebooking me! So, look for yours below (not all questions asked guaranteed answered. More to come):
Dear Meg: I kissed a boy in school, and now he is ignoring me. Also, he blocked me on MSN. What do I do?
Remember the nursery rhyme that goes, “Little Bo Beep lost her sheep and didn’t know where to find them”?
The advice given to Ms. Beep was, “Leave them alone, and they’ll come home, wagging their tails behind them.”
This advice also applies to boys you’ve kissed who are acting like buttholes.
Ignore him, and he will come home, wagging his tail behind him.
(But by that time you won’t want him anymore because you’ll have moved on to a new boy. But it’s good advice to keep in mind.)
Dear Meg: I don’t have time to read. Instead, I listen to books-on-tape in my car as I drive to and from my job. So, when will Abandon be available on audio tape?
Dear Audio Book Fan:
It’s out now!
“[The] strong, amusing voice, the plot twists, and the possibility of romance will draw mystery and chick-lit readers alike.”—Booklist on Abandon
You can buy or rent it here (along with tons of other of my books on tape)! Also available on iTunes (put Meg Cabot in Search).
Dear Meg: I got into the college of my dreams, but my parents say they won’t pay for it unless I major in something “practical” such as accounting. I want to be a writer like you. But my parents say if I want to major in creative writing, I can pay for college myself. I can’t afford to have $200,000 worth of loans to pay back when I graduate! My parents are crushing my dreams. What should I do?
Wants To Be A Writer
You’re lucky to have parents who love you so much that they want to make sure you learn a skill on which you’ll always be able to fall back to support yourself (in the extremely unlikely event the writing thing doesn’t take off right away).
So what if you’ll have to take some really boring classes? Guess what you get to do in the meantime? Work on your novel in the creative writing workshop you’ll be taking as an extracurricular!
You’ll already have an advantage over the kids majoring in creative writing, because you’ll have more hardship and adversity to write about (plus, you’ll know how to do your own taxes).
Be happy that you’re getting a free college education! Most people don’t have it nearly as good as you do.
Dear Meg, I love you
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Hello! It’s me, Meg Cabot, reporting live from the rapture in Key West, Florida (probably the most sinful place in the world outside of Las Vegas and of course the entire state of Indiana). I’m home from Orlando and Canada, and about to leave for my signings next week in NEW YORK CITY!
That is unless the world ends today (which it is supposed to do according to this one cult).
(I’m kind of mad because I was looking forward to the dead rising up from their graves, but since I live 2 blocks from the Key West cemetery, I can personally attest to the fact that so far NO ONE is rapturing and I’ve seen 0 dead bodies rising from graves).
But since cults tend to be wrong about this kind of thing all the time (why do people keep giving cults their money? Tell all your cultist friends to spend their money on books! Also bidding on tea with me at the Plaza for diabetes research!) I was sort of prepared for this and made up this list ahead of time of super fun stuff for you to do today instead of look at dead people rising from graves or die in a lake of fire:
First, you can read the amazing review Abandon got in the Sunday New York Times:
“There’s nothing like coming back from the dead to ruin a girl’s life. . . .” (And that’s just the first line! Honest. I’m not making it up! Click here to read more . . . if you dare! Cuz “death’s just getting started. . . .” I swear it says that. And this way before this rapture thing ever even got started. It’s like I’m psychic or something. Well, obviously I am.)
Second, I finally have a cover for Overbite (my July 5th adult paranormal release, the sequel to last year’s bestselling Insatiable) to show you! (Not to mention, the brand new cover for the paperback of Insatiable!)
Is the apocalypse avoided in Overbite, as it has been (so far) in real life? Well, there’s going to be an Overbite webpage that will spill all sorts of juicy gossip about that, and what Meena and Lucien and Alaric have been up to lately, coming soon (pending rapture).
But in the meantime, you will just have to be satisfied with reading a plot summary here (and you can also pre-order the book . . . you know. . . .if you’re feeling confident there will still be mail by Monday).
Meanwhile, have you been seeing how much coverage all the fun female empowerment books that are coming out this summer have been getting in the media lately? I love it! First the totally sweet CNN interview I had when I was in Atlanta, then this great round up in the Washington Post that talks about how many adult readers are reading YA! It even breaks down some of the summer selections for readers by “interests,” none of which (sadly, I’m sure, for cultists) are burning in a lake of fire.
We even have Al Roker talking YA on the Today Show! Notice the pink book behind Al’s head?
I’m more thankful than I can say to everyone who came to my first few appearances during the start of my Abandon book tour (you can see tons of cute photos of yourselves on my Facebook page here) . . . .
. . . as well as to those of you who couldn’t make it in person to any of my signings so far, but have joined me on my blog tour stops!
And to all the amazing bloggers/reviewers who’ve posted such thoughtful reviews—and even teaching guides!—about Abandon, as well as to everyone who’s picked up a copy of the book so far . . . .
I can’t thank you enough!
Especially because, while all my books are special to me, Abandon has an EXTRA special place in my heart. To find out why, check out this post I wrote for the fun ladies at Forever YA.
No matter how many times anyone tells you no, anything can happen . . . often in the blink of an eye. Which all of you have helped prove this past week by making Abandon debut at #6 on the New York Times bestseller list!
If I could, I’d give all of you one of these! (Hint: They’re giving them away at stops all along my blog tour!)
While these past couple of weeks have been some of the most insanely busy in my life, they’ve also been some of the best, thanks to all of YOU.
And I can’t wait to see more of you at the International Reading Association conference this coming week in Orlando (don’t tell me you’re not coming!), and then this Thursday in CANADA!
Here’s where you’ll be able to find me
(besides the hotel bar):
Tuesday, May 10:
2:00-3:30pm Scholastic Signing Booth
Orange County Convention Center–Booth #840
Wednesday, May 11:
9:00-10:00am HarperCollins Signing Booth
Convention Center–Booth #1220
11:00-12:00pm Featured Author Speaker
Convention Center—West Building
PLEASE STOP BY TO SAY HI!
Sadly I won’t be able to stay past noon on Wednesday because I have to rush off to catch my plane to:
CANADA (click me!)
Thursday, May 12, 7PM
Contact the store for details
1950 The Queensway,
I haven’t been to Canada in FOREVER! I can’t wait!
I’ll be back for signings in the US with authors Libba Bray and Maggie Stiefvater for Scholastic’s new This is Teen online community the week of May 23rd! Check out my schedule here.
And don’t forget my signings beginning June 28 for my newest adult release, Overbite (an exclusive look at the cover coming soon)!
Here are some other events you won’t want to
Abandon is in US (and Canadian) stores now (officially on sale Tuesday, April 26)!
I’m really excited about the publication of this book (and not just because it’s always exciting to have a book published. It’s exciting just to finish writing a book, let alone get it published)!
But there are a couple of reasons that I’m particularly excited about Abandon.
Yes, like the very nice April 26th review in the of New York Journal of Books says, Abandon “puts a new spin on the Greek myth of Persephone. . . .”
But, Meg I can hear you asking, didn’t you actually do that before with Avalon High (which was a sort of a modernized re-imagining of the myth of King Arthur)?
The difference between Avalon High and Abandon, as the reviewer goes on to say, is not only that “one is drawn right into the story, all the while trying to reconcile how this new take on an ancient myth is going to play out. The author is able to capture a sexy, angst-filled sensibility that is a popular and common thread in much of the recent offerings in young adult fiction,” but that “ . . . the author is also clearly not averse to tapping into darker elements.”
I know what you’re thinking: Meg Cabot? Dark?
But as I mentioned today in my piece on the Huffington Post on how “Reading for Pleasure is Serious Business,” being a teen is dark (or at least, it was for me).
(I’ve actually written “dark” before. I’ve been writing YA paranormals—starting with The Mediator series—about a girl who helps the dead move on—and the 1-800- series, which has now been re-issued as the Vanished series, on which a television show starring Vivica Fox called Missing was based, since the year 2000.)
But Abandon is a story I’ve been working on since I got the idea for it in high school. And when I posted the drawings from my Algebra notebook about it on this blog way back in 2006, you guys were so supportive when I later mentioned I’d always wanted to write it as a book!
Ideas are fragile things. They can be so easily trampled. But the minute I confessed to you about mine, all I heard from you was a surge of, “YES!” You guys rock.
And because the first thing everyone asks when they hear you’ve written a book is, “Where did you get the idea for it?” I took that old Algebra notebook filled with drawings from the Persephone myth to the very talented people at One Hundred Robots in New York (because I’m so impressed with their book apps. To me, they aren’t apps. They’re art)!
I thought they could help me explain in video format (not an app. Although you never know!) just how special this story is to me.
So they took those old doodles of mine from that high school Algebra notebook, and made them come to life, telling the story of how I came up with the idea of Abandon!
I love it. What do you think?
While certain other people are stressing out just the teensiest bit about the upcoming royal wedding (see Princess Mia Thermopolis’s blog) on April 29, 2011, I’m stressing out just the teensiest bit about the book tour I’m about to leave on for my new YA paranormal Abandon.
(You can see the clock counting down the days until this event occurs—as well as a sizzling new excerpt and cool other extras—on the brand new web page for Abandon here.)
But if you ask me, Kate’s gig is nothing! It’s just twelve hours, including the ceremony, photos, afternoon cake-cutting reception, and evening reception.
Then afterwards Kate gets to go on a honeymoon on a yacht to relax and be a princess for the rest of her life! Check out MY schedule (there’s an interactive map! For real!) for the next fourteen weeks.
Do you see any yachts or relaxation or tiaras in there? No, you do not.
Not that I’m complaining, because it’s going to be fun (except the travel and the no yachts or tiaras). Part of the tour will include a new initiative by Scholastic to build a global community that connects teens with their favorite authors. It’s called This is Teen and will include me and authors Libba Bray and Maggie Stiefvater, both of whom also have books coming out this summer (but as far as I know, no yachts or tiaras either).
We will, however, be coming to cities near you to tell you stuff like in this video:
Click here to view the embedded video.
Another part of my tour will be to promote Overbite, the sequel to my adult paranormal, Insatiable. Contrary to what you might think, Overbite is not a book about a girl with dental issues. Instead, it’s about a girl battling the forces of evil while (unfortunately for her) being in love with the prince of darkness (an example of taking on more than one can chew, since she doesn’t get a yacht or a tiara either. Sorry if this is a spoiler).
I’ll be able to tell you more about Overbite (and reveal the cover, excerpts, and webpage!) closer to its pub date of July 1.
I’m seriously super grateful for all of the great advanced press there has been for Abandon . . .
. . . like this great review from Seventeen Magazine.
Favorite part from Seventeen review: Pierce is a rockstar narrator. She’s bold, gutsy, and hyperaware. She might even be too brave for her own good. We love a girl who isn’t scared to take action. Pierce might be a little reckless, but at least she’s never a damsel in distress.
And this piece by the amazing Sue Corbett in Publisher’s Weekly Children’s Bookshelf about six new spring titles and their inspiration, including Abandon) and Chris Van Allsburg’s Queen of the Falls. Chris Van Allsburg was my idol when I was an illustration major in college. I can’t believe I have a book mentioned in the same piece as his! I seriously freaked out when I saw that)!
Favorite part from the Publisher’s Weekly piece (about Abandon, not Chris): Where I got to talk abou
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Guess what today is?
My 18th wedding anniversary!
You can read more about it here. Or just read my book Every Boy’s Got One. (Every boy’s got a heart, silly. I know what you were thinking. You are naughty.)
Have a great April Fool’s Day! It’s the best day to fall in love (also to get married. You don’t even have to elope to Italy).
A lot of stuff has happened since I last posted. I’m not going to bother giving a recap, since you all keep up with current events. It’s been the kind of month where some of us may have felt the urge to watch way too many Lifetime Movies of the Week in a row (such as Marilu Henner’s Fight for Justice or Angie Dickinson’s Deep Family Secrets) in an effort to escape our own real life problems, or the ones we keep seeing on the news.
But that’s okay! Stories like Marilu’s and Angie’s have been told (and re-told) for thousands of years exactly because they inspire us and let us know we shouldn’t abandon all hope. Just when it seems like winter’s dark and gloomy days are going to go on forever . . . BOOM!
Not only do the flowers start blooming (a sure sign that spring is right around the corner), but authors start posting. . .Their New Official Book Trailers!
Here’s mine for Abandon:
Click here to view the embedded video.
No, despite popular speculation, that guy’s not an angel or a vampire or a ghost. Think about the clues. Dante’s Inferno. Abandon hope all ye who enter here. Death. Graveyards. Springtime . . . ringing a bell?
Maybe this outrageously awesome review from Forever Young Adult will help you figure it out.
The book won’t be in stores until April 26, 2011. That isn’t much time! I have a lot to do to get ready. My tour schedule is below, and these are just a FEW of the cities I’m going to be visiting.
What will I be doing while I’m at all these bookstores? Well, talking and signing copies of Abandon, answering questions about my other books, giving away tips on how to be a writer, handing out some cool Abandon-related prizes, and possibly spilling some spoilers about the next book in the series, just to name a few things:
MEG CABOT’S AMAZING ABANDON TOUR
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
387 Perkins Road Extended
Memphis, TN 38117
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Barnes & Noble
1430 Plaza Place
Southlake, TX 76092
Thursday, April 28, 2011
Barnes & Noble
Mansell Crossings Shopping Center
Alpharetta, GA 30022
Friday, April 29, 2011
Royal Wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton.
Day of Royal Rest
Saturday, April 30, 2011
Rainy Day Books
Unity Temple on the Plaza
707 W. 47th Street
Kansas City, MO 64112
Sunday, May 8-Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Meg will be a featured author at the International Reading Association Convention. See author schedule. Convention events are open to IRA members only. A signing in a local bookstore in Orlando that will be open to the public may also be scheduled.
But wait! There’s more . . . Abandon events are also tentatively scheduled for Toronto, Boston, Miami, and other locations (to be announced soon)!
In the meantime, also look for me here:
Tuesday, June 28-Saturday, July 1, 2011
New York, New York
Meg will be attending the
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I had this whole big post written out for today to let you know that we’re discussing The Mediator Books One and Two (Shadowland and The Ninth Key) on the Meg Cabot Book Club this month, and that you BETTER stop by here to join the discussion with me because I’m going to be all over it like a spider monkey, etc.
But then I deleted it because it was funny and I thought maybe it wasn’t appropriate in light of what happened this weekend in Arizona (and if you’re like my cousin Bobby, who’s all, “Why? What happened this weekend in Arizona? Wait. Did that flight attendant I met in Phoenix call you?”, I’m posting this link to the news story about it, just in case you don’t know what I’m talking about).
Then I flew into an existential crisis, asking myself why we’re all here and what life means and when will it be OK to laugh again? Maybe never.
Oh, yes. It was bad.
It got especially bad since my husband chose this past weekend to go out of town to do guy things with his guy friends, and my houseguests went home, leaving me alone with nothing but a lot of peppermint bark ice cream and some gluten-free fried chicken.
Yes. I know.
Then during my crisis I chose to watch a bunch of TV shows and movies my husband would never have watched with me, including the new MTV show I Used To Be Fat, which the title alone should explain.
Here is a spoiler:
Exercise – Chicken McNuggets = Lose 90 pounds.
Gabriella on I Used To Be Fat. She was elected Homecoming Queen BEFORE her weight loss, FYI. LOVE HER.
Then as I was wallowing around in despair, shoveling ice cream down my throat, I noticed the movie Eclipse was on. I couldn’t understand parts of it–like why so many of the boys in it weren’t wearing shirts during snowstorms–because it had been so long since I saw New Moon (and really, was this detail ever properly explained in any of the movies?) but many of you generously explained it to me over Twitter (thanks for that, I get it now: Werewolves are literally very hot).
This movie, like I Used To Be Fat, did not solve the problem of my existential despair, but it did solve the problem of what “team” I am on, Team Edward or Team Jacob, since many of you have asked, but I honestly could never decide, just like in fourth grade when everyone wanted to know who my BFF was.
I didn’t know! I liked everyone! Why did I have to choose one person?
Name-calling ensued. The BFF level of hostility in the fourth grade was at an all time high! I never did choose a BFF, a fact which led to my continuing status as a social outcast, but I didn’t care, and I still don’t.
I don’t like it when people play favorites. Why can’t we appreciate one another’s unique differences without having to say one person’s unique differences make him or her better than another person’s? This is why reality shows like American Idol upset me so much that I can’t watch them.
I have stuck by that motto . . . except for one person whose unique qualities were so obviously superior to everyone else’s, I had no choice but to declare him my BFF and then marry him. That quality is:
He makes me sandwiches. And they are very very good.
It wasn’t until the sandwich making scene in the kitchen in Eclipse that I realized one person’s unique differen
Thank you, Golden Globes. We needed that.
Just out of curiosity, have you spent the past twenty-four/thirty-six hours asking yourself the same question I have been asking myself?
The thing is, they’re BOTH gorgeous.
And what does best even mean, when you get down to it? I would die for EITHER of those dresses. I guess the answer is, both.
Sunday night was a good night if you’re the type of person who likes looking at your favorite actors and actresses all dressed up in pretty clothes, getting awards they deserve . . . and you also like shows filled with romantic intrigue set in British manor houses in the early 1900s . . . and you ALSO like shows about crazy polygamists. Because then you, like me, had all your dreams come true.
Big Love, that show about a polygamist family that I always swore I was never going to watch (as opposed to that reality show about the polygamist family that I always swore I was never going to watch), came back to HBO for its final season on Sunday, and I am SO EXCITED because it is SO GOOD.
Hello, we are totally cRaZy.
I’ve also gotten sucked into Downton Abbey, the new Masterpiece Theater dramedy about the romantic entanglements of the servants and blue bloods in a country manor house in England in the early 1900s. If you aren’t watching this show, you TOTALLY need to, because it’s as dishy as Big Love.
If you live in England, Downton Abbey was already shown in full, so no spoilers please! (I already know they’re making a second season, which is fantastic, because we need more shows like this.)
Hi, we’re cRaZy, too, only we aren’t polygamists. Although some of us might be blackmailers and possibly murderers. The rest of us are searching for love and happiness!
Back to the Golden Globes:
Besides the clothes and all the empty boxes of Godiva chocolates on everyone’s tables, my favorite part was when Chris Colfer won for his role as Kurt on Glee. I loved his acceptance speech! I knew so many Kurts in high school, and I love the way he’s portrayed on the show (and I can’t wait for Anne Hathaway’s guest appearance as his aunt)!
I actually love the way ALL the characters on Glee are portrayed, except I can’t help thinking that in real life, Rachel is the kind of girl who, if her boyfriend dumped her, would not cry and beg him take her back. I feel like in real life, Rachel would narrow her eyes and go, “Really? You’re dumping me?”
Then she’d channel all her rage (not despair, because in real life she’d just feel sorry for him for making such a deeply tragic mistake) into her performances.
Then Finn would be all, “What’s happening? I’m scared. I thought this was supposed to be The Sound of Music. Why is Maria von Trapp biting me?”
And then Mr. Shu would have to step in and try to perform an intervention. But it would be too late because by then Rachel would just be all, “Later, losers! I’m leaving on a bus for LA!”
Which I realize is the prequel to Burlesque. But you know it’s true.
In Meg Cabot news, don’t forget our discussion on the Mediator begins today!
And you only have a couple m
As you know if you’ve been following my Twitter feed, my cat Henrietta has been having some health concerns. Nothing life threatening . . . unless you call inexplicably pulling out her own fur and then spitting it across the room life threatening.
Which of course I do, because now there’s a bald spot across her butt that resembles the one on the back of Prince William’s head.
Not to mention the fact that every time I come into the room I find wads of fur on my pillow, like a gift from the Fur Fairy.
So we contacted the mobile vet.
Because the worst part about going to the vet is getting Henrietta into her carrier (claws flailing, skin slashed) and then the car ride over (screaming, projectile vomit), and then pulling her out of the carrier (revenge poop flying everywhere), and getting her examined (vet giving up, insisting she needs to be anesthetized for the safety of everyone concerned, Henrietta instituting a riot in the back room where all the other pets are quietly waiting their turn, me having to go in there and break things up, B.A. from the A-Team style).
PS None of the above is exaggerated in the slightest. I only wish it were.
But now, blessings upon her, there’s a vet who makes house calls!
I was sure we’d be able to fool Henrietta into thinking nothing out of the ordinary was going on. She’d just be lounging around, spitting fur across the room, and then . . . SURPRISE! Thermometer up the butt.
Because really, Henrietta is a sweet little angel who fell down from heaven to be with me seventeen plus years ago. The only reason she misbehaves so badly when we remove her from her home environment, I’ve always insisted, is because she was found as a tiny one-eyed stray in Brooklyn. Brooklyn girls, as we all know, are very tough. They don’t like to be messed with.
This was before the vet suggested that perhaps Henrietta’s problems stem from “tortietude.”
“Tortietude” is the “attitude” commonly found in tortoiseshell cats, which “tend to be very nervous and jumpy, and prone to hyperactivity. They are also very sweet and loving when calm—” especially around their owners, to whom they are fiercely loyal, very much one-person cats “—but are easily riled up and very high strung.”
Of course, I’m not sure Henrietta is a tortoiseshell. She fits the personality profile, but tortoiseshells, or “torties,” are cats with “mottled” fur, usually with patches of orange or cream and chocolate, black or blue (they differ from calicoes in that calicoes are predominantly white).
Henrietta, as you can see, does have the colors listed above . . . but she has all of them. She looks like a frappuccino threw up on her:
In case you didn’t know, according to their Wikipedia entry, torties are believed to bring good luck. The Japanese Maneki Neko figurine is a calico cat, which is a subset of the tortie (or the tortie is a subset of the calico, whichever).
It’s said to bring money and good fortune, which is why you always see it in Japanese restaurants.
One thing I do know for sure: Tortie or not, Henrietta outdid
My mom is very excited because Garrison Keiler (best known for A Prairie Home Companion) talked about her (and her boyfriend) today on the The Writer’s Almanac. Here’s what he said (it’s even mostly accurate):
It’s the birthday of novelist Meg Cabot, born in Bloomington, Indiana (1967). As a kid, she hated the heat in Indiana, so she spent all her time in the library because it had air-conditioning. She realized that she actually loved to read, and decided that when she grew up, she would either be a writer or illustrate comic books.
After college she moved to New York and discovered that being an illustrator or a writer was not easy. So she worked as the manager of a dorm at NYU. Then her father died, and that changed two things:
First, she decided that life was short and she might as well do what she wanted, so she sent a publisher one of the novels she had written for fun, and eventually she got it published. It was a historical romance called Where Roses Grow Wild (1998). Second, her mom started dating again. She dated one of Meg’s college professors, and Meg was upset by it even though she felt like she shouldn’t be, so she wrote a story about a teenage girl whose divorced mother starts dating the daughter’s algebra teacher.
The story didn’t have much of a plot, so Cabot added a twist — the girl finds out that her father is the prince of a small European country, and that she is his only heir, and she has to go learn to be a princess. Before Cabot even published her first novel, Disney optioned the book for a movie starring Julie Andrews and Anne Hathaway. In 2000, Meg Cabot published The Princess Diaries, and the film version came out in 2001. The Princess Diaries is a best-selling series, with 10 books in all.
It’s pretty cool when you can impress your mom ON your birthday. She was much more impressed by Garrison Keilor talking about her (she actually called ME to tell me about it) than she was when I told her that I am a birthday slut on Dlisted again this year. (In fact, she said, “What is Dlisted? Why would you want to be a slut? I do not think you are a slut. I don’t like that,” which I’m pretty sure Michael K would love to hear.)
I have no idea who took the photo above (it was sent to me by my friend Beth), but I LOVE it because for my birthday I had to work, so I kind of felt like that cat.
But I tried not to feel sorry for myself, because 99.9% of the population has to work on their birthday. Writers aren’t special. I like to celebrate my birthday by lounging around all day in my pajamas watching movies with either aliens or cowboys in them (how mad am I that Cowboys vs. Aliens is not coming out until this summer?). But fortunately I can do that when I am done with all the work I have due, so it’s not a big deal.
I have to say though, you all made me working on my birthday much more fun with all your happy birthday Tweets, Facebook postings, emails, cards, and messages. So thank you!!!!
In return, I offer you this, with something much more exciting (I hope) to come . . . when I finish it! Thanks again!!!! I love you all!
Click here to view the embedded video.
There appears to be some kind of “controversy” over how Christina Aguilera sang the National Anthem at the Superbowl.
I would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone that one thing our great country has always stood for is being there for the underdog in times of trouble (usually. Sometimes we are a little late).
That is why I am here now to defend Christina.
The Star Spangled Banner is one the hardest songs in the world to sing (besides Happy Birthday). I can back up this statement with the following fact:
Not only are the words in The Star Spangled Banner confusing (what is a rampart, anyway?) and old-timey, but it is a song that requires a vocal range most people, except dogs, Christina Aguilera, and possibly Mariah Carey, do not possess.
This is why when you were a little kid and you were auditioning for a part in the touring production of the Broadway musical of Annie, they made you stand up on stage and sing The Star Spangled Banner.
Wait. Are you telling me you didn’t audition for the touring production of the Broadway musical of Annie when you were a kid?
Well, I did. And I can tell you, they made you sing The Star Spangled Banner to see if you could hit that high note mentioning the rockets red glare without dropping an octave, because so few people can (they also made me sing Happy Birthday, in chest voice, which is impossible for most people except Lea Michele and that lady from Wicked, because it contains the same note).
(No, I did not get the part, because I could not hit that note, which Christina hit with such ease in front of so many millions of people.)
Look, my grandfather got a purple heart in World War II fighting against the Nazis (he served under General Eisenhower and was shot in France). Though I have not been shot for it (yet), I love this country and consider myself a patriot.
But because no one but a professional can sing it well, much less remember the lines, I think it might be time to consider choosing a national anthem that all of us — not just professionals — can sing without fear of messing up because it’s just too hard.
We had a lively discussion about this on Twitter, and everyone had some thought-provoking suggestions for an alternative national anthem.
My husband was in favor of The Gambler by Kenny Rogers:
You got to know when to hold ‘em
Know when to fold ‘em
Know when to walk away
And know when to run
You never count your money
When you’re sittin’ at the table
There’ll be time enough for countin’
When the dealing’s done
He also strongly argued for Horse With No Name by the band America:
I’ve been through the desert on a horse with no name
It felt good to be out of the rain
In the desert you can remember your name
‘Cause there ain’t no one for to give you no pain
I have no comment except to say that I happen to know for a fact when we went for a trail ride in the Tucson desert with his younger brothers on Valentine’s Day once, his horse did indeed have a name, and it was Pancho.
My favorite suggestion — because everyone knows it and it would be very rousing to sing at sporting events — was the theme song to the famous 80s movie Ghostbusters.
It would be quite simple to change the words to this song so it is about our country, as I have done here:
If there’s something strange
in your neighborhood
Who ya gonna call?
If there’s something weird
and it don’t look good
Who ya gonna call?
It’s that day again: The day some people love to celebrate with little pieces of paper cut into the shape of a heart and exchanges of gifts of candy and jewelry, and other people hate with an all-mighty passion.
But don’t worry. Whether you’re a lover or a hater, I’ve got Valentines for everyone:
1) Nothing says Be My Valentine more than abducting a girl and forcing her to live with you in your underground palace in the Underworld.
Check out the newly updated page for my April 26, 2011 YA paranormal release, Abandon. We’ve added an exclusive sneak peek chapter, and an introductory video I shot in the middle of a cemetery last summer, in front of the most haunted crypt in Key West.
2) Win a free Advanced Reader Copy of Abandon, and the cool promotional stickers that go with it, to give to your Valentine (or just keep for yourself).
All you have to do is join the Abandon Facebook page and you’ll automatically be entered to win. A new winner will be chosen every week until the book debuts April 26, 2011. (You will be contacted for your mailing info if you’ve won. People who’ve already joined the page, you are already entered.)
3) Want to be alerted about more sneak peek chapters, videos, and contests BEFORE they are announced to everyone else? Then join the Meg Cabot Mailing List!
4) Come talk about a couple who loves to hate Valentine’s Day: Jess Mastriani and Rob Wilkins from the Vanished books (also known as the 1-800-Where-R-You series).
The current online discussion on the Meg Cabot message boards is about Books One and Two in that series (check them out here).
Rob may not have swept Jess off to the Underworld, but he took her a few places she wasn’t supposed to go. Which is just one of the many reasons her mother doesn’t approve of their relationship.
We’re giving away copies of the Vanished re-issue to the best conversationalists! And of course I’ll be stopping by the discussion to answer questions and talk about Rob’s abs in more detail.
5) Check out these cute romantic covers of my books from foreign lands:
Awwww . . . I know, right? That’s not at all what happens in Avalon High, but who cares?
(And did you know Avalon High, the movie, won the Writer’s Guild Award for Best Children’s Script, Long Form? Congrats!)
But this one wins the Valentine Heart Necklace from Jared’s. Princess Diaries 10, from Japan!
Could you die? Not even I could picture Michael and Mia’s horse and buggy ride through Central Park any cuter than that. Here is the whole thing:
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I know! It’s like I fell off the face of the earth, right?
But I’ve actually been right here, writing (and occasionally Tweeting. And Facebooking). It’s just so hard to tear myself away from my heroines’ worlds to tell you about my own because mine is so boring in comparison (uh . . . I got glasses?).
If you don’t believe me, watch this (the first in a series of videos about my new book Abandon that are going to be coming out, and I swear they get better and better as they go on. Hint: so does my hair, at least in the ones in which I appear):
Click here to view the embedded video.
Yes. I filmed that in a cemetery.
You never know where life is going to end up taking you as a writer.
Apparently, sometimes it is a cemetery.
I have no idea what kind of expression I am making here. I think it’s Please Don’t Haunt Me, Dead People.
You wouldn’t think the main problem with filming in a cemetery would be chasing away the chickens and tourists who kept wandering into the shot, but it was (for real).
Everyone keeps asking me “Did you write a modern re-imagining of the myth of Persephone because you love the Greek myths or something?”
And the truth is, I think the Greek myths are very interesting.
But I really only ever cared about the myth of Persephone while I was growing up because I always thought there was something very compelling about someone who felt such a connection to a girl that he resorted to doing something as outrageous as kidnapping her and then allowing the earth’s entire population to starve (that is like ten felonies right there).
(If you don’t know the myth, don’t worry, a video will follow soon to explain it.)
That’s why I used to sit around in Algebra and draw these little scenes from the myth in my notebook instead of paying attention.
I think everyone can relate to that scary feeling of falling in love for the first time— you really do think you’d be willing to do almost anything for that person.
And as a teenager, I was always longing to find that one special person who would not only completely love and understand me exactly as I was (no phony pretense), but come and take me away to a place where I would fit in.
Because I felt like I didn’t fit in at ALL where I lived, and that no one understood me, either. I kind of felt . . . Abandoned.
So to me, that’s what the myth of Persephone was about. And that’s what Abandon is about, too.
I should probably let you know I am going on a national book signing tour for this book. I don’t have all the confirmed dates or cities yet, but some of the states I know I’ll be heading for at the end of April are Tennessee, Texas, Georgia, and Kansas City, MO. As soon as I find out more, I will let you know!
You’ll also be seeing me at