Feb 28, 2009

My temporary tattoos came in and they are awesome and if you want one I might consider sending you one.

Feb 27, 2009

From Library Journal:

Turgeon, Carolyn. Godmother: The Secret Cinderella Story. Three Rivers: Crown. Mar. 2009. c.288p. ISBN 978-0-307-40799-3. pap. $13.95. F

Cinderella went to the ball, Prince Charming fell in love with her, and they lived happily ever after. But what if the fairy godmother had gone in Cinderella's place? Such is the twist on this retelling of the classic fairy tale. For her indiscretion, Lillian has been cast out from the world of fairies and into the human world. After hundreds of years in exile, Lillian longs to return home. When she meets Veronica, a beautiful, quirky young woman with a passion for life and belief in the impossible, Lillian sees her opportunity to make amends and find a way back home. Turgeon's second novel (after Rain Village) thoughtfully peels away the layers of fairy-tale convention and delves deeper into the notion of true love—its cost, its power, its rarity, and its beauty. Romantics and fans of fairy stories of all kinds will be enthralled by this latest take on the Cinderella story. Recommended for all fiction collections.—Leigh Wright, Bridgewater, NJ

Feb 26, 2009

Look at Eric, hanging out with the most glamorous ladies!!

In other news, I LOVED the movie Let the Right One In -- a gloomy, lovely, emotional, snow-filled movie from Sweden about vampires that will break your heart.

I also think the finale of Top Chef was some bullcrapola.

The end.

Feb 24, 2009

I've joined Twitter under the incredibly original and frankly stunning name carolynturgeon. A lovely book reviewer I spoke to today advised me to. So if you are on Twitter you should obviously become friends with me. I am quite sure it will bring our relationship to a whole new level.

I also was told by another lovely book marketeering friend that it was crucial for me to sign up for Amazon Connection and so I did that too. But now I have to put things on it.

I also went to Goodreads, yet another thing I signed up for and don't check much -- of course for that site it would help if I actually read things -- and whilst there stumbled upon a reader's review of Godmother that is by far the nastiest review I've ever read of mah own glorious prose. The review ends with this line, however,

If this author offers you a nice, refreshing glass of Kool-Aid, it’s probably best to pass ...

which I think has a nice wicked witch ring to it.

And the book isn't even out yet!

In other news, I went up to Random House today to sign a bunch of books and take care of some things, and I was gifted with several other books published by Three Rivers/Crown. One was THE ZOMBIE SURVIVAL GUIDE. Another was LOVE IS A MIX TAPE, a memoir about a man who fell in love with his wife through music and coped with her early death through music too. I started on the train and it done nearly made me cry just in the first few pages.

It's almost enough to make me read again!


Falling in love with Renee was not the kind of thing you walk away from in one piece. I had no chance. She put a hitch in my git-along. She would wake up in the middle of the night and say things like ‘What if Bad Bad Leroy Brown was a girl?’ or ‘Why don’t they have commercials for salt like they do for milk?’ Then she would fall back to sleep, while I would lie awake and give thanks for this alien creature beside whom I rested.

Renee was a real cool hell-raising Appalachian punk-rock girl. Her favorite song was the Rolling Stones’ ‘Let’s Spend the Night Together.’ Her favorite album was Pavement’s Slanted and Enchanted. She rooted for the Atlanta Braves and sewed her own silver vinyl pants. She knew which kind of screwdriver was which. She baked pies, but not very often. She could rap Roxanne Shante’s ‘Go on Girl’ all the way through. She called Eudora Welty ‘Miss Eudora.’ She had an MFA in fiction but never got any stories published, but she kept writing them anyway. She bought too many shoes and dyed her hair red. Her voice was full of the frazzle and crackle of music.

Renee was a country girl, three months older than me. She was born on November 21, 1965, the same day as Bjork, in the Metropolitan Mobile Home Park in Northcross, Georgia. She grew up in southwest Virginia, with her parents, Buddy and Nadine, and her little sister. When she was three, Buddy wa transferred to the defense plant in Pulaski County, and so her folks spent a summer building a house there. Renee used to sit in the backyard, feeding grass to the horses next door through the fence. She had glasses, curly brown hair, and a beagle named Snoopy. She went to Fairlawn Baptist Church and Pulaski High School and Hollins College. She got full-immersion baptized in Claytor Lake. The first record she ever owned was KC & the Sunshine Band's "Get Down Tonight." KC was her first love. I was her last.
A very bizarre pairing from Amazon:

Feb 23, 2009

So I've been in NYC the past few days, trying to get some book stuff done and doing many lovely things, LIKE FOR EXAMPLE

-- seeing a preview of my friend Eric's show 33 VARIATIONS with my friend Valerie, starring a very spectacular and kick ass JANE FONDA (and written and directed by MR MOISES KAUFMAN who directed one of my all time favorite Broadway shows I AM MY OWN WIFE and is a beautiful beautiful writer). Jane Fonda plays a scholar trying to figure out a mystery about Beethoven, so the show goes back and forth in time in a cool way and there is much gorgeous music. This is Eric's first big show as an above-the-title producer and I was done proud.

-- meeting a bunch of bookly friends for drinks and dinner, among them one MR ANTON STROUT whose second novel DEADER STILL comes out tomorrow. Here is the cover as well as our sparkling visages:

-- going to my first FASHION SHOW at FASHION WEEK with Joi and her old friend Jen AKA BEATCHIK and her nephew's wife Melissa, and sitting in the second row and seeing 50000 extremely bizarre alien beings tottering down a gleaming white space age runway wearing magnificent, elaborate clothes, like flowing gowns with big buddhas on them. I only have a certain amount of appreciation for clothing tho and was more fascinated by the models' glittering smoky eyed alien glares. AT one point I wondered if they were wearing weird silver contacts or something but I don't think they were, I think they were ACTUALLY ALIENS. OH and I did become smitten with this one pair of boots that seemed to be made entirely of glitter and was even more cool than the coolest pair of boots in the world and those of course are the boots that Madonna sees in a window and trades in her jacket for in DESPERATELY SEEKING SUSAN. Oh AND we were sitting within spitting distance, well maybe watermelon seed spitting distance, of MISS JAY from America's Next Top Model--the weird runway coach who teaches the girls to walk--and HE was sitting with some pale pale tall black haired guy in red and white stripes with big round glasses and a big red hat, and we all fell in love with him but we don't know who he is. But who don't love a gay man made of candy.

Here are some fascinating photographs, and you will notice that Michael Musto was right in front of us and if you squint squint squint in the third one you can see you some Miss Jay and the vaguest little speck of the candy man:

-- on Saturday getting a MASSAGE, followed by FONDUE and WINE with my friend Signe at one of the lovelist places in NYC The Bourgeois Pig, and then going to Brooklyn for Joi's BIRTHDAY PARTY where one MS SHEENA BIZARRE had a singing telegram sent at the stroke of midnight. Singing telegrams are awesome and really the best way to simultaneously embarrass your friends and show them you care. Please wish Joi a HAPPY BIRTHDAY if you haven't already. It's good to have a milestone birthday just before up and moving to Kansas for your one true luvv.

-- watching the horrifying OSCARS after a lovely lunch with my friend David and a margarita with my friend Anthony. Anthony, Rob, Autumn, and Joi and I sat and watched the terrifying dance numbers but also fell madly in love with MICKEY ROURKE AND HIS DOGS as well as with the dood who wrote MILK. And the adorable Japanese man who quoted Styx.

-- oh and having a long intense fancy lunch with Eric in which I cried openly in a crowded restaurant where the only person (besides Eric) in my line of vision was some character actor I recognized but didn't know the name of. I would like to think that this sort of behavior speaks to my DELICATE NATURE rather than lack of emotional stability, thankyou, and all was well and we expressed our deep love and devotion and then I went to PAPYRUS and bought beautiful pink stationary. As you do.

And I didn't even mention my many hot dates. Or the fact that I turned in the proposal for BOOK THREE to Random House. I KNOW. Slutty AND impressive!

The end.

Feb 18, 2009

I am excited because a couple of years ago Ms. Molly Crabapple made me this loooovely drawing

and now I have ordered FIVE THOUSAND little temporary tattoos of it.

Just because they will be awesome.

I might consider giving you one.

Also, here are some beautiful photos of my friend Heather expressing her deep and everlasting love for yours truly:

The end.
Dear Friends,

If any of youse know any book reviewers/bloggers/media types etc who should get a copy of my book, please tell me immmmediately.


Feb 15, 2009

So I have been back in PA this last couple of weeks writing writing writing about mermaids (I'm submitting the first chapters and an outline and synopsis next week) and doing Godmother things and going back to my personal trainer and catching up on sub-par movie watching, like for example CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC and HE'S JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU and NEW IN TOWN and, this afternoon, FRIDAY THE 13TH. Oh, and THE WRESTLER, which I quite loved and quite broke my heart. And CORALINE, which has a circus scene so lovely I think I gasped out loud in the theater.

Here is something very sweet. My mother was in Florida last week visiting my grandmother and uncle, and my grandmother, who is 90, LOVES Julio Iglesias with her whole heart and has for many many years. I first learned about this love during our visit last summer and was sort of shocked to see my grandmother get all swoony talking about him, how handsome and sexy he is, how wonderful all his songs are, how wonderful a man he is. Never in my life had I seen her even make a gesture that was even in the ballpark next to the ballpark of swooning and she was practically fanning her face. ANYWAY, so Julio Iglesias was playing in Clearwater, FLA, last week, and my mother, uncle, and grandmother had tickets but then my uncle made secret arrangements to get my grandmother BACKSTAGE to meet her one true love, and my uncle and mother told her that day and she was nervous and giddy all afternoon and during the concert and then afterwards they went back and met him and Julio Iglesias wrapped my grandmother in his arms and kissed her cheeks and the top of her head and just hugged and hugged her and made her promise to come back to see him in two years, and he kissed my mother and thanked my uncle for "bringing your mama to see me," and was generally just completely charming to them. So now I love him, too.

Here are my mother and grandmother waiting backstage:

And with Julio:

In other news, I received the final final soon-to-be-for-sale-in-stores copy of Godmother in the mail last weekend:

Isn't it lovely?

And I received a galley of the beautiful UK version, and a print-out of what the final cover will look like. And it has SPARKLES. In the title. You will obviously want to buy that version as well and fondle it daily.

And there is a Facebook page which you should obviously join immediately:


And here is a Q&A I did about the book:

1. What was it about the Cinderella story that inspired you to revisit this fairy tale?

I think the initial inspiration for Godmother was just that I wanted to do something more simple than I had done in my first book, which was a struggle and took many years to complete. I just wanted to work with something wonderful—a fairytale—and play. To me, Cinderella is about the most glittery gorgeous fairytale I can imagine, with its glass slippers and fairy godmother and moment of transformation, its pumpkins turning to carriages and its mice to coachmen, the wonderful dress, and, of course, the ball. As a child I was as enchanted by the story and the movie as any other girl. And at base it’s a tale about being saved. This is a big theme for me: how people can save each other, and how they can’t. So it made sense to me to tell the story from the perspective of the one who is supposed to be doing the saving. Not the prince, but the fairy godmother who swoops in to give Cinderella a new life.

At first I intended to tell the story pretty straightforwardly, using the most lush, vivid language and detail I could. But once I started really getting into it, and into the psychology of the godmother and Cinderella, I knew that it was impossible to ignore the story’s dark heart. I mean, what really happens to Cinderella in that house with her stepmother and stepsisters? Is she really able to just leave it and step into the world? Can she be saved? And who is this godmother exactly? How does Cinderella’s pain affect her? What does she want?

2. Are there other fairy tales that have interesting back stories that you’ve thought about or would like to one day explore?

Yes. Right now I’m working on a retelling of the original Hans Christian Andersen little mermaid story, in fact. I’m telling the story of the princess—the one the prince falls in love with and marries instead of the mermaid, and who only appears briefly in the original story—as well as the mermaid. It’s in the vein of Godmother, though in this case the original story is already very dark. I like the idea that the princess and mermaid might have their own relationship. The novel opens with the princess witnessing the mermaid pulling the prince to shore after rescuing him from shipwreck. It’s a moment that will change her life forever.

In general, I have always loved retellings, loved plucking out the minor or unknown character and telling their tale. Like in Wide Sargasso Sea, or Girl with the Pearl Earring. In the future, I’m interested in doing this not only with fairytales, but with myths and with history. I studied Dante in graduate school, and am writing another novel that tells the “real” story of Beatrice Portinari.

3. Why did you choose New York City as the setting where the abandoned fairy godmother is outcast to?

Well, I wanted Lil’s human life to be as gritty and real as possible, and I was living in New York when I wrote the book. And New York is a great setting. I was working at a non-profit in the Garment District, and on my first day at that job my boss Julius said something about how the Garment District was the only part of New York left where you can really feel what it would have been like in the 19th century. It made me see that area in a new way, and so I had Lil living there, right around the corner from my job, on 36th Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues. New York just seems the perfect place for someone like Lil: she can be almost anonymous there, live in the same building for decades, be surrounded at all times by the past, and eke out a living at a little bookstore downtown. And, occasionally, come across magical creatures like her friend Veronica. Plus New York is a hard city to live in, and would present Lil with plenty of challenges that spur her need to rectify her mistakes and return to her own world.

4. One of the strongest themes in the novel is redemption. How did you explore this in Godmother?

Godmother is more about never being given the chance for redemption. That is, never being able to get someone back once they're gone. Which is the most awful thing about being human and what makes Lil imagine so vividly that she can make things right, when she can't. She can't undo what she did to her sister/Cinderella. She can't bring either of them back, once they're gone. She has to deal with the loss and her own culpability, and she uses a fairytale to imagine her way out of it, imagine a happy ending. Which to me is totally life affirming and beautiful, as well as deeply sad. That is: what stories can do for us, and what they can't.

5. What research did you do about fairies for the novel?

I actually didn’t do a lot of research. I got some books about fairies, but decided it would be best just to make it up. I think many of us have some pre-conception of what a magical world might be like, what fairies are like, ideas and images that we’ve read or seen or heard, and I drew on those memories. But I had to do it in stages, and my editors really pushed me to give this world as much shape and detail as possible. I was tentative about describing this world too much—and in my first draft, in fact, I just started with Lil visiting Cinderella and barely described Lil’s own world at all. I was afraid of making all the fairy stuff corny, but was finally convinced that the more clearly this world was delineated, the less corny and more real it would be. I did look through enough literature to know that some fairies came from the water, and I liked that idea.

Also, from the beginning I knew Lil had to have big white feathered wings, like the trapeze girl in Wings of Desire. The black-and-white image of Solveig Dommartin swinging back and forth on the trapeze partially inspired both Godmother and Rain Village, in a way. It’s so beautiful and so sad, this fleeting ecstatic moment before the girl has to come down and take off her wings and her glitter and the circus goes away. So I always described Lil as having these white-feathered wings, and then later was told very vehemently, and more than once, that fairies do not have feather wings. They have wings like insects. Eventually I was convinced, and I added in the detail that Lil has these wings only because she’s a godmother. All the others? Have wings like insects.

AND I WILL BE HAVING TWO READINGS IN STATE COLLEGE, PA one at the B&N on March 4 and one at Webster's on March 23), AND ONE IN NYC (March 26 at the Tribeca B&N) before heading off with Joi on our two-week plus road trip to KANSAS.

So you should obviously come to all three of those, too. There will be pink cupcakes at at LEAST one of them. And maybe pink champagne.

The end.