Nov 28, 2006

So my parents came to NYC for the holiday and they, my sister and I glamorously played a ton of Canasta, watched the whole season of Top Chef so far, and also had the seven-course tasting menu at Gramercy Tavern, which made me decide that I must GET RICH IMMEDIATELY so that every day I may eat dishes that are served to me in shimmery little dollops with accompanying descriptions that sound like poems. I'm not even sure I understand what it was that I ate, but it sparkled in my mouth and caused a great many emotions and sparks to fly through me, and I'm quite sure it whispered untoward things to me in an inappropriate yet seductive manner involving seared scallops and cilantro reductions and many many other things that slipped flirtily through my brain and over my tongue before vanishing into mist. The restaurant also smells like burning wood and could be in the middle of Pennsylvania, with the twigs and branches twisting over everything, the voluptuously slutty pumpkin and apple displays, and these perfect wide-planked wood floors. I love going into big NYC places and feeling like they is somewhere else. We also spent time at my favorite place, The Algonquin Hotel, which is all Christmas-y and even more glittery now, and sort of feels fancy and literary but also like your grandparents' house.

And we saw Happy Feet, despite my many many protestations and unassailable arguments to see Volver, and my father read my book--it is so weird and disconcerting to have so many people I know reading it now--while I read the amazing, painful, stunning Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates. !!!

Also, yesterday I booked a crazy flight from NYC to San Francisco (where I will read at Codys on January 14th) to Portland, Oregon (I'm reading at the main Powells on January 17th, and my friend Lanas's friend's beautiful club Someday Lounge on the 15th, with a bunch of Victorian-style circus peoples), to Shreveport, Louisiana, from where I shall travel to Marshall, Texas, for the Pulpwood Queens girly weekend and then back to NYC. And the next weekend is this amazing thing in Vermont, where yours truly shall eat cheese in front of fireplaces and glamorously roll down snow slopes in a vain but not vainglorious attempt to ski.

Oh, and I just got word that i will be reading at Women and Children First in Chicago on Friday February 23.

Also, this Friday I am reading at the Lucky Cat, and then Sunday down the street from my lovely homestead at the new mall in GLENDALE.

Here is the Lucky Cat blurb:


Join us for the next installment of EARSHOT at The Lucky Cat, located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn! EARSHOT is a bi-monthly reading series, dedicated to featuring new and emerging literary talent in the NYC area.
Friday, December 1st, 2006 at 8 PM, hosted by Nicole Steinberg
*co-sponsored by Book Court (*

Carolyn Turgeon (author of Rain Village)
Erica Kaufman (poet and host of the belladonna* reading series)
Liesel Tarquini (The New School)
Sharon Fishfeld (City College)
Jared Bezzant (Brooklyn College)

Admission is a mere $5 plus one free drink (beer, wine or well drinks only)!
The Lucky Cat is located at 245 Grand Street in Brooklyn, between Driggs and Roebling. Visit their website for directions:

Also visit for more information on Earshot or e-mail Nicole Steinberg at

Nov 22, 2006

Flyer by designer extraordinaire Bonnie Shelden

Nov 21, 2006

I just did the dorkiest thing I've ever done, or at least one of them, and certainly the most fan-nish... I was at the Staples down the street buying envelopes and saw my one true love AUSTIN SCARLETT of Project Runway fame making photocopies, looking otherworldly and shimmery and luminescent, and so with a full and bursting heart I went to my office and got my book and stuck a card in it and came back and went up to him, very sweetly, and said I was his fan and that I wanted to give him my book as a present, and he seemed delighted and surprised or SO I WOULD LIKE TO THINK and said "this is yours?? you wrote this?" and i said "yes!" and then smiled AS IF I WERE A RAY OF SUNSHINE and waved and left so as not to be a complete lunatic, just a partial one, but one who is very well coifed. The end.

I should also mention that I am very very excited about the reading Tink and I are doing at the Glendale Borders opening extravaganza on Dec. 3 at 2pm. She is going to read from her new novel about GYPSIES and I of course will read about the CIRCUS and then Keith Bindlestiff of the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus will do marvelous and extraordinary things in between. And then after we will have friends to our house where we shall serve hot apple cider and cookies and other delights. I didn't think anyone would come to Glendale but it seems many of our friends are coming AS SHOULD YOU, so it should be a lovely lovely afternoon. We are also making flyers in a gorgeous attempt to lure our fellow Glendalians to this event, and to nefariously transform Glendale into a haven of circus gypsy bookishness.... I am also reading at the Lucky Cat on Friday December 1 as part of the Earshot Series, along with 4 other peoples.

Also, my reading in State College on Nov 10 went really well.. About 40 people came to my parents' house beforehand for the Mexican circus buffet my mom made, and it was realllly lovely, this assemblage of family and old friends and my parents' friends and my old Italian professor Dr. Triolo, who introduced me to Dante and the old Italian storytellers and poets in college and "almost made a medievalist" out of me, as he said at the party. Then we all went to the Barnes & Noble and I read and signed books and then we all had cheesecake and coffee. I think there were about 50 people there.. And my cousin Frankie, who is 12 or 13 I forget, got a copy and is going to write a book report on it for her class. Ha! Then we came back to NYC and that Sunday I read for Bill Cobb at KGB since he couldn't make it, and that was a packed, overflowing room but I wasn't very nervous since I was reading from his book and not mine. And my mom and sister and Joi and Rob and Bonnie came, and Rob and Bonnie won a free Broadway play and then we all had dinnnna.

Then Tuesday was my NYC reading at Barnes & Noble Astor Place, and I took the day off work and spent the day with my mama and my friends Massie and Barb washing celery and icing cupcakes and making many many whores derves and then, with my friend Joi, getting my hair done by Lana.. and at the actual reading the very very cool events peoples took me aside into this hallway and so I could hear the crowd getting bigger and bigger but I couldn't see them.. and I could see the store people bringing out more and more chairs, and by the time the woman went out and introduced me and I walked out, I could not believe it .. The chairs were all full and went back to the magazine racks, and then there was a small crowd of people standing... and not only were there like 500000 people but I knew about 90% of them and that was one crazy wedding-ish mix of family and friends of all stripes and coworkers and book people and my therapist and my agent and my boss and paramours past and current..

I was so nervous and overwhelmed and amazed but I read, and during the first passage I read I kept looking up into the crowd, I wasn't paying any attention to what I was reading, and at one point I looked down and focused and could have SWORN I was reading the same page I'd just read.. I had this whole mini panic attack and I almost stopped reading, and I looked out at the crowd and I thought they were all staring at me like "THAT IS SO SAD SHE IS SO NERVOUS SHE IS JUST READING THE SAME PASSAGE OVER AND OVER" but then I calmed down and kept reading and tried to be a little more focused and supposedly did okay.. The party after was so fun, but just this big blur since there were so many people to talk to and I wanted everyone to feel happy and comfortable but there were just too many people that night and I didn't get to talk to lot of them.. It was really fun, tho, and the show Molly Crabapple put together and performed in with Keith Bindlestiff and Amber Ray and Scarlett Sinclair was awesome, and the NYC Blues Devils were awesome, and Nell at Otto's Shrunken Head made everything easy and smooth and fun. So, it was all pretty great tho not unTRAUMATIC. But it does make every reading I have to do in the next few months seem easy in comparison, and in fact makes everything else I ever have to do seem easy by comparison except GET OLD AND DIE but that is another story. The end.

Nov 13, 2006

Nov 9, 2006

So I’m in my sister’s apartment downtown watching the television classic Top Chef while my father naps in her room. We’re waiting for her to get off work so we can drive down to Pennsylvania tonight, but she is so fancy and lawyerly that she NEVER STOPS WORKING. Eventually, however, we will take to the open road, as tomorrow is my big hometown reading at the local Barnes and Noble. Before the reading, my mom is hosting a big Mexican circus buffet with all kinds of culinary delights including an empanada torte thing and corn pudding and carnival hot dogs and pink lemonade.. She’s banned everyone from the kitchen all day tomorrow as she finishes her nefarious scheming and plotting, and is decorating the house with roosters and stars. 45 guests are coming! My mom designed the invites and sent them out to everyone a month or so ago. It is really all quite astonishingly lovely.

We’re driving back up to NYC Sunday and it looks like Sunday night I will be reading at KGB. Two other Unbridled authors, Bill Cobb and Lisa Haines, are scheduled to read but Bill can’t come so I am glamorously and gorgeously going to read from his book Goodnight Texas for him.

Oh and I’m excited because on Sunday, Dec. 3, Tink and I are both reading at the grand opening of the GLENDALE Borders. That is right. A new Borders is opening up down the street. Obviously, by this time next year Glendale will be the new literary hot spot of NYC.

Nov 7, 2006

So this evening I suffered the horror of going with my friend Tink to vote at a school down the street--and being asked if she was MY DAUGHTER. It is true the woman had only glanced at us and, while Tink was off voting, was telling me that she'd given certain forms to my friend "..or daughter?".. but I still found it quite horrifying, especially given that Tink is with child and I myself obviously appear to be 20 years old to everyone except that blind old poll-minding bat.

But Tink later gave me a book celebration gift she'd bought for my book party next week, which she is not able to attend due to a Penguin sales conference suspiciously scheduled at the same time. Publishing house traitorousness aside, this might be the best gift I've ever gotten--after, of course, the gift of life:

Nov 4, 2006

So I'm in Philadelphia, in my friends Mark and Jen's beautiful old rowhouse, where a bunch of friends gather every year for a spooky autumnal weekend involving many many board games and horror movies and pumpkin pie and mugs of apple cider with cinnamon sticks and corn mazes in weird damp small towns with suspicious names like Lambertville. I love this house because it's narrow and tall, with creaking wooden stairways and ancient victrolas and 50000 vinyl albums and a big fireplace and lots of cool bits of art and a front porch with pumpkins on it. It's in South Philly, on the kind of block that has leaf-strewn streets, where all the houses are made of old brick and have windowboxes shamelessly filled with flowers. My friends Rob and Bonnie and I drove down from New York last night--Bonnie Shelden being the amazing and generous artist who designed my inarguably irresistible and inimicable party invitations, with the trapeze girl Molly drew--and tonight is my second reading, at Robin's Bookstore at 6pm. Obviously, you will all attend and buy me extravagant cocktails just after.

I also saw a man this morning, at the diner we had breakfast in, wearing a pair of Guinness pajama pants. At first I thought they said GUNS and was vaguely jealous, despite my calm and glamorous mien.

Nov 2, 2006

Nov 1, 2006

So my friend Molly Crabapple's book is just now available, and you obviously need to buy it or else always feel like something is missing, something you can't quite put your finger on... You'll think it's religion, or a piece of chocolate cake, or a Ferrari, or, like in my case, a cottage deep in the woods in Pennsylvania with a screened-in porch and a fireplace, when really it is just this, this one gorgeous thing chock full of stories and drawings and even paper dolls. I know. It's almost as if you've bought the book already.

Molly did all the illustrations for my website, and has also organized and is performing in the leetle sideshow/burlesque show at my book party. She does many more things besides, but I'd rather not contemplate them as she is much younger than me. Which I think is extremely impolite.
Today is the official release date of my book.

Here is a dorky interview I did.

Also, the lovely writer who interviewed me said that the new Pages Magazine is out, in which I am a *Promising Debut*, but she cruelly tricked me as the Chelsea Barnes and Noble still has the last issue.