Month: August 2009
For those who don’t know, Elisa Rolle is an international book reviewer. She recently posted a few personal photos on her livejournal blog that I thought were amazing. And I wanted to re-post them here for people like me, who haven’t had a chance to get away this summer because they’ve been working too hard. And for people who love Italy as much as I do.
Here’s the link to the photo page: http://elisa-rolle.livejournal.com/770301.html?view=2819069#t2819069
Subject: CURE FOR SNORING
The guys were all at a deer camp. No one wanted to room with Bob, because he snored so badly. They decided it wasn’t fair to make one of them stay with him the whole time, so they voted to take turns.
The first guy slept with Bob and came to breakfast the next morning with his hair a mess and his eyes all bloodshot.They said, “Man, what happened to you?”He said, “Bob snored so loudly, I just sat up and watched him all night.”
The next night it was a different guy’s turn. In the morning, same thing–hair all standing up, eyes all bloodshot.They said, “Man, what happened to you? You look awful!” He said, ‘Man, that Bob shakes the roof with his snoring. I watched him all night.”
The third night was Fred’s turn. Fred was a tanned, older cowboy; a man’s man. The next morning he came to breakfast bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. “Good morning!” he said. They couldn’t believe it. They said, “Man, what happened?” He said, “Well, we got ready for bed. I went and tucked Bob into bed, patted him on the butt, and kissed him good night…
When they asked what happened, he said, “Bob sat up and watched me all night.”
Now, just to be clear, because I don’t want anyone getting the wrong impression. Although I’m a fan of American Idol, both these books are only loosely based on the TV show. They are LGBT erotic romances, but they are also satirical, fictional love stories that are not based on anyone who is actually connected with American Idol. I wanted to explain this, because I hate the thought of anyone spending their hard earned money on a book they think is total fan fiction. It’s not. One romance reviewer compared AMERICAN STAR to fan fiction, but she either didn’t get the satire, or she didn’t read the book in full. Either way, I wanted to clear that up so people don’t get the wrong idea.
You have to be a devoted fan of something in order to write fan fiction. I said I was a fan of American Idol, but not enough of a fan to stand in line for hours waiting to audition, I wouldn’t miss a good dinner party to stay home and watch American Idol, and I’m certainly not enough of a fan to write a book about anyone or anything involved with the show. And, to be totally honest, I’ve never even bothered to vote for any of the contestants. I like the show, I think the people involved are talented and dedicated, but that’s as far as it goes.
I wrote the books because I know that millions of people in the LGBT community are fans of American Idol and I thought it would be interesting to take a satirical look at what could happen, from a pop culture point of view, with a show like American Idol. And in order to make it more interesting, I took at look at what might happen behind the scenes. There’s very little music in the books, and the plots don’t revolve around the singing. They revolve around the personal, intimate relationships.
Some were clients; others were browsers. Lainie Kazan came in wearing a sweat suit and dark glasses, and Mick Jagger pulled up to the curb in a long limo. When Barbra Streisand came to town, everyone was on the lookout. Unfortunately, when she walked into my shop I was working on a manuscript for Cleis Press and I wasn’t paying attention. I didn’t even know it was her until someone across the street pointed her out. Ah well.
My brother, Mark Field, owns a wonderful business in Manhattan, http://venfieldnyc.com/ . His client list includes celebs like Lucy Liu, Matthew Broderick, and Danielle Steel.
But the sweetest celeb I’ve ever met was Eileen Fulton. Eileen is most famous for her role as Lisa Grimaldi on “As the World Turns,” but she is also an accomplished singer with a very excellent cabaret act. I met Eileen the first weekend she started doing her act in New Hope in the late l990’s, at Odette’s (formerly owned by Odette Myrtle, the famous Hollywood actress). She walked into my shop with her manager, Richard Barclay, and I was dumbstruck. She’s just as gorgeous as all her photos, but her southern charm calmed my nerves. Eileen was spending the weekend at the Inn next to my gallery, and she was doing four shows that weekend for a sold out crowd.
I quickly made a few phone calls and got a couple of tickets to her show. And I never do that. I’m not starstruck and at the time I was putting long hours at the gallery. But I was glad I did. The show was excellent, and Eileen Fulton made the crowd roar.
But more than that, she came back to New Hope, twice a year, for the next five years to do other shows at Odette’s. I saw them all, and never got tired of hearing her sing. And when she wasn’t rehearsing or performing, she was hanging out on the streets of New Hope, charming everyone with her endearing personality. She purchased a large sterling tray from me for her home. I liked her so much I didn’t even want to charge her. But she insisted, so I gave her a huge “friend” discount.
Unfortunately, Odette’s nightclub was lost in the last huge flood we had here in New Hope. And the owners didn’t rebuild and Eileen stopped coming to New Hope. Then I closed the gallery and started writing fiction full time instead of part time. But, Eileen is still doing her cabaret act in New York, and I’ve seen it there, too. I know she just did one in June at The Metropolitan Room, and I’m sure she’ll be doing others. I’ll post dates when I get an update from her.
Thanks, Eileen, for some wonderful memories and some nice times.
This so-called underground web site, http://astatalk.com/, is stealing three of my books, and I know for a fact that it is stealing many more books from other people.
If you are a writer, and you’ve been through the battles of having your book downloaded illegally, please check this out, file an abuse, and don’t let them get away with it.
“Can I buy you a drink?” Gio asked. He smiled and stared directly into his eyes, but he met a natural resistance that didn’t happen often. He wasn’t able to penetrate his thoughts; he couldn’t find a way to control him.
The guy smiled back and made a face. But he said, “Ah well, no thanks, buddy. I’m a recovering alcoholic and I don’t drink anymore.”
“I see.” He continued to peer into his eyes, but it was no use. His will was so strong Gio’s right eye began to twitch. He’d seen this before with recovering alcoholics and people who had conquered serious addictions. They’d learned to concentrate so hard and had trained themselves so well, it was next to impossible to penetrate their thoughts. And for some reason, this only attracted Gio even more.
“But why don’t I buy you a drink instead,” the guy said.
Gio laughed. Then he said, “I don’t drink either.” Alcohol didn’t influence him; mortal beverages were tasteless and provided nothing he needed.
He blinked a couple of times, then extended his right hand and said, “I’m Colin.”
“I’m Gio. Do you live in town?” Colin’s handshake was strong and dominant; his fingers were long and thick.
He told him that he lived across the river, in New Jersey. He’d just moved back to the area, because of some “trouble” he’d had in college. He didn’t go into details, but the “trouble” had been serious enough to cost him his driver’s license for one year and a long, expensive list of legal fees. So he moved back home to work in the family construction business to help pay his debts. He smiled and said, “I like your name, Gio. Is it short for Giovanni?”
Gio’s eyebrows went up; the guy wasn’t stupid. Most Americans called him Joe, because they didn’t know any better. “Yes. It is.”
“My mother is from Italy,” Colin said. “I can understand most things in Italian, but it’s hard to converse if you don’t practice often.”
They sat there talking like this until two in the morning. Sometimes in Italian, but Colin shrugged his shoulders most of the time. Gio kept ordering club sodas and tipping the bartender with ten dollar bills so he wouldn’t lose money on them. When it was time to close the bar, it occurred to Gio that he’d forgotten all about food that night. And he didn’t care either. If he had to, he could go days without sustenance. Besides, the night before he’d taken three football players, one long-haired musician from a rock band and a married guy from the suburbs. He’d be fine for a while. When they stood to leave so the bartender could close for the night, he asked him, “How are you getting home?”