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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Better Watch Out, Better Not Cry, Your new ARCs are on their way!

Right, so everyone in my household is waiting at the edge of their seats for Santa to come barreling down the chimney. And by "everyone" I mean, my son, and by "their seats," I mean his booster chair and by "the chimney" I mean "through the window," since we don't have a fireplace.


But I'M more psyched for my new ARCs to arrive! (That's Advanced Reader's Copies--the first version of a new book, that gets sent out to reviewers and bloggers and other influential folks.) I'm told that the ARCs of SHE'S SO DEAD TO US are a) BEAUTIFUL and b) going to arrive in my mailbox (or on my front porch) TODAY! I keep looking out the window for the UPS/FedEx/USPS delivery truck like a maniac. Kind of like I did back in eighth grade when I KNEW my mom was getting me that denim The Lost Boys jacket and I knew it hadn't come yet (because I was always the first to get home and see the packages waiting on the doorstep), and I had, had HAD to have it for Christmas or I was just going to DIE!

Double sigh. The jacket did come, by the way, and I still have it. Though I haven't worn it since middle school. I wonder if it would still fit . . . .

Okay, moving on. As soon as I get these lovely ARCs I will take a photo of me with them and post it, because I'm that excited. And if I have enough, maybe I'll give a few away, too! Check back and I'll keep you posted.


Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas Movie Addendum!

Right, so I totally forgot about LOVE ACTUALLY, which is funny, because I watched it the day BEFORE I wrote that blog. Thanks to you guys for reminding me. The scene in the street with Keira Knightley and her husbands bff kills me every time! And I love, love, love when Hugh Grant goes looking for his girlie in the 'hood and baffles all those people and has to sing carols for those little girls. AND when Uncle Jaimie leaves his Christmas before even entering ("I hate Uncle Jaimie) and then goes and proposes to Aurelia who learned English "Just in cases." Sigh . . .

Yeah, Love Actually rules.

And then my bff reminded me that I also forgot THE HOLIDAY, which I can't turn off whenever it comes on. That cottage Cameron Diaz stays in is so . . . Christmasey. And I love Jude Law's kids and the romance between Kate Winslet and Jack Black. Not to mention Kate's friendship with Eli Wallach. Another fabulous entry into the Christmas rom-com genre.

More suggestions? Keep 'em coming!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Movies to Get You in the Christmas Spirit

Right, so, I used to have one movie I HAD to watch every holiday season, and it was MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET. The original. Not the cheesy "modern" version with Dylan McDermott (although he's, admittedly, gorgeous), but the original classic. And it had to be the black and white version, not that horrifyingly awful colorized crap. I mean, who do they think they're kidding with that technology? When the eight year old's skin looks grayer than your grandma's, the tech is not working.

But I digress. Over the last few years I've discovered that I feel the need to whip out a few other films during the holiday season. Some really are Christmas movies. Some just have Christmas in them. But all of them put me in a holly-jolly kinda mood. So here they are, in no particular order.

Sandra Bullock saves Peter Gallagher from getting splatted by a train on Christmas Eve, falls in love with his family while he's in a coma, and by New Year's Eve, is giving googly eyes to his brother, played by Bill Pullman. This movie made me wish I worked at the EL in Chicago just so I could get proposed to by someone dropping a ring in my token tray. Crap. I just spoiled the ending.

"So, good news. I saw a dog today! Have you seen a dog? Yeah, you probably have."
"Buddy the Elf! What's your favorite color?"
"Francisco! That's fun to say."
"I love smiling. Smiling's my favorite."
"The yellow ones don't stop."
This movie is beyond sweet, and the stellar writing cracks me up every five seconds.

It's just not Thanksgiving in my house without the sound of Kevin McAllister screaming over some ill-advised aftershave. Plus the soundtrack makes my Christmas.

So this movie takes place over the course of about ten months, but the Christmas scenes are so New York Christmas-ey. And they capture the sense of togetherness, joy and nostalgia perfectly. Also it's romantic, funny and the last movie Meg Ryan made in which he face looks normal.

I recently realized that Tim Allen spends alot of the first 20 minutes of this movie being cranky and yelling for no apparent reason (I realize they're setting up character development, but does he have to be SO mean to his kid?), and that Bernard the Elf is kind of pissed off and unsympathetic for an elf. But still, the North Pole is perfection, casting children as elves lends a serious bit of magic, and I love the E.L.F.S-es. (The sequel is OK, but the third one never should've been made.)

The single best romantic movie set against the backdrop of Christmas in New York. Snow, a tuba tree, Bloomies, ice skating in central park, Serendipity frozen hot chocolate . . . sigh. Love Cusack. Love Piven. Love Beckinsale. Love Corbett. Love Shannon. I even love poor Moynahan, who not only seems to get screwed over in every role she plays (Sex and the City, Six Degrees, plus the movie in question), but in real life as well. Hey! Men of the world! This woman is gorgeous, smart and cool. Be nice to her.

If I could pick on actor who should have been frozen in time and allowed to live forever, it would have been Jimmy Stewart. This movie proceeded my birth by, like, 30 years, but I can still quote it and I get this insane warmth around my heart whenever I watch it. Sometimes, I wish I could've grown up back then, when things were both a lot simpler and way more complex.

What movie franchise portrays family insanity better than the Vacation films? And what better time of year to really get in there and dig out the angst, than Christmas? From the ailing, complaining grandparents to the whiny kids to the dad who tries way too hard to make everything LOOK perfect, it all hits home. And then there's the hilarity of some great physical comedy, sight gags and poop humor as well. This one always makes me smile.

This seriously sugary old-school musical puts a lot of people to sleep, but I'm hypnotized by the dancing, the costumes, the songs and what passes for "passionate" kissing. It IS cheese. But I do love me some cheese.

Somehow, I still love this crazy little movie even though every year TBS (or is it TNT) puts it on non-stop look for 24 hours so that I keep catching the same fifteen minutes over and over and over again. Note to self: don't watch this year. It will make you appreciate Ralphie that much more NEXT year.

So that's my list. Any good ones I missed? Feel free to weigh in! And HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

SNOW QUEEN hits stores!

In case you've yet to hear my best-kept secret, I have yet another name under which I write. Yes, yes, I know. I have some serious issues. But there are reasons for all these names. Namely (no pun intended) that the more names I write under, the more different types of work I get to do. Emma Harrison (that's the name we're discussing here) was originally conceived so that I could write things like quiz books and movie and tv tie-ins without it interfering with my hardcover work. You know, so that if you searched for Kieran Scott on bn.com, I Was a Non-Blonde Cheerleader wouldn't be buried under pages of Mary-Kate and Ashley novels and High School Musical quiz books.

ANYWAY, over the last few years I've also gotten to write a few novels under the Emma Harrison name, and the latest has just come out. It's called SNOW QUEEN and it's about a girl named Aubrey Mills who is a total tomboy, yet somehow gets roped into competing in the Snow Queen pageant by her best friend . . . and falls in love with Grayson Chamberlain the MC of the pageant, and the brother of her nemesis. Isn't the cover pretty? I know I'm biased, but I think it would make a gorgeous gift for your bff this holiday season, don't you? :)

Okay. That's enough shameless self-promotion for today. If you do read it, please let me know what you think. You guys know how I love feedback!