Thursday, December 30, 2010

What you could have gotten for Christmas

One of the harsh realities about Christmas is that you always end up getting something that you would never have bought for yourself. If you're really lucky, it's some decorative thing that you have to put up in your house somewhere because the giver will visit and wonder where it is.

But don't fret. It could always be worse. For example, your loved ones could have gotten you an Obama Chia Pet. Isn't America great? Where else could children dream about growing up to have their face on a Chia Pet?

Or how about these lovelies:

They're Worry Kitties. You're supposed to whisper your worry to one of the sympathetic Worry Kitties and then tuck the adorable critter 'neath your pillow before you go to sleep, and in the morning your worry will be gone!

Is it just me, or do the rest of you think that if you put one of these underneath your pillow, it would come to life sometime during the night and gnaw your ear off? That's what I'd worry about.

Need something even creepier? How about skeleton yard gnomes. Really, I am trying to imagine the new-product-meeting where some genius came up with this idea.

And who doesn't need a solar powered waving queen figurine? (At least they didn't make her into a chia pet.)

My last aren't-you-glad-you-didn't-get-it-gift will need a bit of explanation. I love dolls and spend far too much time on eBay perusing through doll listings. I especially love looking at the reborn dolls. This is not a religious movement, but a way of painting dolls into one of a kind masterpieces that could pass for real children. Take a look at the next picture for an example of what some artists can do:
Gorgeous, right? (It's on eBay right now for 125.00. I'm so tempted.)
Well, for some reason that is beyond me, people can't leave well enough alone, and this apparently applies not only to yard gnomes, but also to reborn dolls. Because the horrible new trend in the reborn dolls is--get this--reborn orangutans.

Yes, let's take something precious and make it creepy. Here's a reborn orangutan on eBay right now.

I am pretty sure this would frighten small children.

So then, your Christmas stash really wasn't all that bad, was it? And hey, if you need to go out and buy yourself a gift, I know of some great books you could buy. Just saying . . .

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Far Fetched? I think not.

I've heard on more than one occasion that my plot lines are far fetched. Take My Double Life. A girl meets another girl who looks just like her, and thereby figures out that they share a father--a famous singer.

Couldn't ever happen in real life, right?

Apparently, wrong. My friend just sent me a link to Liv Tyler's biography and that is exactly how she figured out her father was Aerosmith's lead singer, Steven Tyler.

Here's the excerpt from People's biography:

Discovering Daddy Tyler
When Liv sees Mia (Steven's daughter with his first wife Cyrinda, who is a splitting image of Liv) at an Aerosmith concert in 1988, she realizes Steven is her biological father.

Yeah, that must have been some ride home with her mom after the concert.

Mia's a plus size model now, but I still think she looks a lot like Liv.

It's weird really, how even when you think you're being original, you're not.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

interview and free books

A few blogs are giving away ARCs of My Double Life right now so I thought I'd let my blog readers know so they can enter. I'll update the list this week if google tells me of more blog giveaways. There's also a blog that's doing an interview, and since I know you're all memorizing Janette Rallison trivia and crave these sorts of details, I thought I'd add three of the questions here--sort of a teaser that will make you want to read the whole thing.

If you could travel in a Time Machine would you go back to the past or into the future?

Well, according to the latest novels (and we know authors are always right) the future is populated by dystopian societies that will do things like make you fight to the death in hunger games, choose your spouse for you, or put you in a deadly maze. Whereas the past was populated by numerous hot dukes, lords, and viscounts who were always looking for spunky heroines to settle down with. Taking that into consideration, I think I would visit the past.

If you could invite any 5 people to dinner who would you choose?

That depends whether my choices were limited to the living or if I could invite the dead too. (Although really, the dead don’t usually make good dinner guests.) It's too hard to choose just five, because George Washington gets all bent out of shape if you invite Abraham Lincoln and not him. So I’ll tell you which five writers I’d choose to have to dinner. Jane Austin, James Herriot, J.M. Barry, Ellen Conford (she was my favorite author growing up) and Charles Dickens

(Janette's note: I just finished reading The House of the Seven Gables and I can tell you right now that Nathaniel Hawthorne will never be invited to one of my chic and exclusive dead-author-dinner-parties because that man just drones on and on and on about the most pointless things.)

What is one book everyone should read?

Mine. Definitely. Just pick one—everybody should read it.

To read more of the interview, and a chance to enter the book giveaway go to:

You can find other book giveaways at:

Friday, December 03, 2010

The Next Worry: Printing Mistakes

I just sent off the galleys for My Unfair Godmother--which basically means I will not see that manuscript again until it shows up on my doorstep as a hardback novel. You would think my worries about the book would be over.

But alas, no. Because now I get to worry about printing mistakes.

This deep-seated worry probably had its origins back when I worked in a bookstore. We got a shipment of Bill Cosby's book Fatherhood and proudly set them up in a display case. Not long afterward, a customer came up and showed me one of the books. It was completely full of blank pages. The customer wanted to know if it was supposed to be some sort of gag book--as in, this is all I know about fatherhood--nothing.

Nope. It was just a printing error.

That would be a bad mistake, but there are much worse.

Take for example Penguin's recent mistake in a cook book where instead of calling for freshly ground black pepper, the recipe instructed cooks to add freshly ground black people to the dish.

As you can imagine, this caused a costly recall and reprinting of books.

Although at least if you get that sort of mistake, people will understand it was a typo.

But take Anne McCaffrey's collection of short stories called Get of the Unicorn (as in, offspring of the unicorn). The publisher misspelled the title, calling it: Get off the Unicorn. They never fixed it, and a generation of readers has read it wondering: Was someone on a unicorn? And why were they supposed to get off?

Still, it probably is good advice. If you're on a unicorn, get off!

Here's crossing my fingers that there won't be any embarrassing printing mistakes in My Unfair Godmother . . .