Monday, February 06, 2006

Are you in my book?

Friends, it has come to my attention that my Long Island town is abuzz with rumors that SECRET CONFESSIONS OF THE APPLEWOOD PTA is about actual members of our local Parent Teacher Association.

Consider this an open letter of assurance to my townsfolk that nothing could be further from the truth. As gorgeous, fascinating, entertaining, talented, lovable, unique and worthy of volumes of adoring prose as you are, I did NOT put you in my book. Remember, this is a novel, and as such, a work of fiction. That means it’s nothing but a twisted product of my warped imagination.

But if you need further convincing that your life didn’t fuel my inspiration, take this simple quiz in the privacy of your own home, by answering True or False to each of the following statements:

1. I’m on a PTA committee responsible for getting a George Clooney movie filmed in our schoolyard. T F

2. I’m married to a brain-damaged man who asks strange women to fuck him. T F

3. Invited to be secret reader to a classroom full of kindergarteners, I showed up in a miniskirt with no underpants. T F

4. I sing like the gates of heaven have opened, but am afraid to let anyone hear my voice. T F

5. My mother is an alcoholic eccentric, prone to removing her clothes for anyone who asks. T F

6. I had an affair with a Catholic widower who’s a senior ranking officer of the school board. T F

7. I wrote a song on the guitar about this lover. T F

8. I broke my ankle and got so drunk at a wedding I sawed off my cast. T F

9. Once, in a fit of rage, I painted every surface in my kitchen—including walls, cabinets, ceiling and floor--a bright, high gloss yellow. T F

10. After being accused of stealing a jar of pine nuts, I hurled the contents at the president of the PTA. T F

11. I told my best friend that my secret fantasy is to rappel into George Clooney’s bedroom dressed like Catwoman. T F

12. I am a fictional character. T F

If you answered FALSE to two or more of the above questions, sleep easy. You are not in this book.

Tune in next week when I answer the question, “Is this book autobiographical?”

Meanwhile, here’s a peek at what the book is really about:

Behind the vinyl-sided veneer of Applewood, Long Island, live three women with more humor, heartache and sexuality than one PTA can hold.

With her husband’s affection waning, Maddie Schein is hungry for recognition and wishes she could impress the PTA elite. But you can’t drive a law degree, or slip your IQ over your shoulders and tie it into a jaunty knot. Brash, lusty and rich, Ruth Moss has it all except for one thing: her husband was left brain-damaged, impotent and sexually-uninhibited from a stroke. Talented but timid, Lisa Slotnick wants nothing more than to fade into the scenery, but is thrust before the spotlight by her out-of-control, alcoholic mother.

Together, these women form the publicity committee of the North Applewood Elementary PTA. When they learn that they’re responsible for the most exciting project their town has ever seen--bringing George Clooney and a movie crew to their own backyard--each thinks it will fill a void in her life and make her an Applewood hero.

What they discover in the end is that it’s their friendship--together with a little luck, a lot of honesty, and some newfound trust--that just might help them pull off a Hollywood ending of their own.


Myfanwy Collins said...

I don't live in your town, but I took the quiz anyway. I answered F to all of them--so I guess I'm not in the book. Darn!

Ellen said...

Lol! Maybe I'll find a spot for you in The Smart One. ;)

katrina said...

Hilarious!! And I have a woman who likes to show her body in one of my stories. I wonder if they are the same woman. Hahaha!!!

Anne said...

I can't wait to read this.

RobinSlick said...

Err...regarding #5 -- you didn't interview my daughter, Julie, did you?


Randall Brown said...

Ah, rats. I really wanted to be in the book. Unfortunately, when I read to a room full of kindergarteners, I showed up in a mini-skirt WITH underpants. Ah, well.

I've heard such amazing things about this book from those who know. August, right? It's so hard to wait.

Ellen said...

Kat ... wuh-oh. We must be basing our stories on the same Long Island Woman! (Note to local friends: I'M KIDDING.)

Hi Anne! Thanks!!

Robin... you crack me up!!

Ellen said...

Thanks, Randall! I figure in some future book I should be able to find room for a miniskirt-wearing guy (with or without panties.)

Susan Henderson said...

This is hysterical!

Jordan E. Rosenfeld said...

Oh you wry woman! I love your sense of humor.

I think you might want to run another quiz to say: "Why applewood is not a fictional version of YOUR town..."


Maryanne Stahl said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Ellen said...

Thanks, Sue! Glad you liked it.

Jordan... er, I might have a hard time convincing my local friends that Applewood is not based on our town. ;)

Melanie Lynne Hauser said...

Get used to this, Ellen! Everyone always assumes fiction is autobiographical. (How many times have I been asked if I'm really a superhero? Sigh.)

Ms. Lori said...

Oh, god. You've written my life's story. Yup, just replace Clooney with Pitt, and that's me all right.

***hangs head in shame***

Ellen said...

Melanie ... lol! You mean you don't have super powers? The funny thing about my town is that people don't assume the book is about ME. They assume the book is about THEM. It'll be interesting to see if they still think that once the book comes out.

Lori! The things I'm learning about you!!

kathryn said...

I've got a wild imagination, so I answered YES to them all, until I got to the last question. Hmph! Fictional, I am not, no matter how imaginative an imagination! Great post, Ellen. Very funny!