Thursday, November 30, 2006


Today I'm thrilled to be doing a GCC does Hollywood blog entry for the beautiful and talented Kyra Davis, whose critically-acclaimed new book, So Much For My Happy Ending, is in stores now.

If Kyra got an opportunity to meet with a bigshot movie producer, here's how she'd pitch the book:

So Much for My Happy Ending is about April, a young fashionista who marries the charming Tad Showers in hopes of attaining a normal family life. She soon discovers that Tad is suffering from an untreated (and initially undiagnosed) bipolar disorder. Now April must deal with her husband’s unraveling while simultaneously finding her own strength.

And here's how she'd cast it:

April could be played by Thandie Newton (Mission Impossible 3 and Crash). She has the right look (April is biracial) and she has proven that right amount of spunk to be able to pull off this tragicomic role. (Editor's note: I just saw Crash for the first time and loved this actress.)

Tad’s tougher. He could be played by Matthew McConaughey I suppose because Mathew seems like the cute boy next store so no one would be expecting him to have a major dark side.

So Much for My Happy Ending is in stores now, and available from online booksellers such as For more information, visit Kyra's website at

Monday, November 27, 2006

Finally saw that Entertainment Weekly review

It wasn't easy, but I finally got my hands on a copy of that issue of EW that has a review of the audiobook edition of Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA. My favorite quote:

"Kudrow pulls off a comic tour de force .... Raunchy, absurd and entertaining in the extreme." A-

Not only that, but check out the company we were in. The other audiobooks reviewed in Jennifer Reese's article were Ernest Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises, narrated by Wiliam Hurt (B+), Erica Jong's Fear of Flying, narrated by Hope Davis (A-), Wendy Wasserstein's Elements of Style, narrated by Cynthia Nixon (B+), Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird, narrated by Sissy Spacek (A-), and Dennis Lehane's Coronado, narrated by Stanley Tucci (B-).

Free bookplates for the holiday season

My publisher recently sent me a fresh stack of pretty bookplates, and so I've decided to send them out for free without the normal SASE requirement.

So if you want some--for yourself or for people on your holiday list--just drop me an email at Let me know who to make them out to and where to send them. The bookplates are self-adhesive and affix right to the inside of the book, so it's an easy way to give someone a personally inscribed copy of Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA.

Of course, I don't have an endless supply, so if you're interested, please contact me as soon as you can.

Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA is available in stores and from all online booksellers, including

Sunday, November 26, 2006

A- from Entertainment Weekly!

I got an interesting email from my cousin Max Weiss, the film critic, yesterday. She was writing to congratulate me on the Entertainment Weekly review of the Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA audiobook. This was news to me. Of course, I ran out to buy the magazine, but couldn't find the issue (it's the one with Gwen Stefani on the cover). Fortunately, Max was kind enough to read it to me over the phone. I'm thrilled to say it was an overwhelmingly positive review, earning an A- from the tough critics at EW, who give out an awful lot of Bs and Cs and even Ds. Another huge thanks to Lisa Kudrow for doing such an amazing job!

Listen to an audio sample here.

Buy the unabridged CD edition from Amazon here.

Buy the unabridged MP3-CD edition from Amazon here.

Buy from

In other weekend news, the hardcover edition of Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA got a swell review from The reviewer, Keris Stainton, called the book "funny, compelling and well-written."

Now, is it my imagination, or do my cousin Max the film critic and Keris Stainton the book critic look like they were separated at birth?

Sunday, November 19, 2006


How perfectly apt to be devoting my latest GCC goes Hollywood blog entry to a book called MORE CONFESSIONS OF A HOLLYWOOD STARLET by Lola Douglas. It follows Lola's popular TRUE CONFESSIONS OF A HOLLYWOOD STARLET, and here's how she'd pitch it to our fictional producer:

Just when Morgan Carter was falling in love with the simple life she'd built in Fort Wayne, Indiana, her identity as an infamous starlet was exposed. Now her mom wants her back in L.A., but Hollywood holds deep, dark secrets Morgan has yet to confront ...

And here's how Lola would cast it:

Believe it or not, I think about this all of the time. I've always thought that Hayden Panettiere would make a good Morgan--with a dye job, of course.

Allison Mack could play Morgan's Indiana best friend Emily Whitmarsh, and Jon Foster could play Em's twin brother (and Morgan's love interest) Eli Whitmarsh.

Kallie Flynn Childress would be awesome as Morgan's nemesis Debbie Ackerman.

Oh! And Sophia Bush could totally be Marissa Dahl, Morgan's Hollywood best friend.

Once again, one of my Girlfriends Cyber Circuit colleagues manages to make me feel prehistoric by assembling a cast I've never heard of, despite the fact that they're all probably hugely popular. At any rate, I'm sure they'd make a great movie of this delectable book, which even the finicky Kirkus Reviews was charmed by. You can buy MORE CONFESSIONS OF A HOLLYWOOD STARLET online or at your favorite bookstore. For more information, visit Lola's website at

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Be still my heart

Borders to donate net profits from the sale of O.J.'s book to victims of domestic violence. Read story here.

Happy Birthday to ... me

Today is my birthday. I'm not usually that into presents, but this year I already got two really cool ones--a digital camera from Mike and an interview conducted by someone very special over at Sue Henderson's LitPark.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Holiday Special

Signed books, free shipping and handling!

Want a signed copy of "Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA" for your or someone on your holiday list?

Want more than one?

Act now and save! (Can you tell I used to write brochures?) I'm offering a holiday special for a limited time. Send me two or more copies of the book (or have Amazon ship them directly to me), and I'll not only sign them with personal inscriptions, but pay the postage to send them back to you. In many cases, I can even ship books directly to your recipients. For details, drop me a line at

George Clooney is the sexiest man alive

Well, duh.

In case you haven't heard the news, People Magazine just released their 2006 Sexiest Man Alive issue, and George Clooney has won the honor for the second time.


But you know what I wish even more than that? I wish that George Clooney would call to thank me for the personally inscribed copy of "Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA" I sent him. Maybe even this Saturday, November 18 ... my birthday. (Note to George: Lisa K. has my phone number.)

Friday, November 10, 2006

Can you guess what year I got married?

Today is my wedding anniversary. Based on the styles in this picture, can you guess what year I got married?

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Failed experiment

I tried a new template for this blog and thought it looked so cool, but alas it only worked in Internet Explorer and not in Firefox, so I'm back to this, though I changed the background color. I couldn't look at that tan anymore.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Bleed by Laurie Stolarz

Today's GCC-does-Hollywood reins are handed over to the beloved YA author, Laurie Stolarz, who would pitch her newest blockbuster to a producer like this:

Over the course of a day, the lives of ten teens will intersect in unexpected ways. Among them are Nicole, whose decision to betray her best friend will shock everyone; Kelly, who meets the convicted felon she’s been writing to for years; and Maria, whose definition of a true friend is someone who will cut her.

And here's how Laurie would cast the book if it was made into a movie:

Wow, that’s a tough one. I get asked that question a lot about the Blue is for Nightmares series and I almost always picture Eliza Dushku for Stacey Brown, mostly because of her edge and seeming ability to kick butt.

But for Nicole and Kelly…? Maybe Sarah Drew as Nicole (the girl-next-door type of character, one who’s also somewhat shy and awkward) and Amanda Seyfried as Kelly (the pretty and popular girl, who also has a hidden dark side).

I have to tell you, I've spent some time at the YA shelves in the bookstore, and I always see young readers picking up Laurie's books. They eat them with a spoon. So if you're thinking holiday gifts about now, please consider checking out Bleed and other books by Laurie Stolarz (including the new boxed set of her Blue is for Nightmares series). They're online and at bookstores everywhere. For more information, visit Laurie's website at


Saturday, November 04, 2006


As promised, I'm blogging about my dinner last night.

Just to backtrack a bit, I was part of a prize package auctioned off at a fundraiser for Caumsett State Park. The item was "Dinner with the Author," and the meal was generously donated by a divine, 4-star restaurant in Huntington, Long Island called Jonathan's Ristorante.

In my previous post I had passed along misinformation about the number of diners, as it was actually dinner for seven (three couples plus me), which was wonderful, because it was cozy enough to actually chat. I got incredibly lucky because the couple who placed the winning bid, Mr. and Mrs. L., were so lovely and gracious, and so were their friends. In fact, the whole gang was a hoot to spend an evening with, and I'd do it again in a heartbeat, though next time I'd love to have my husband there.

Speaking of my husband, here's a funny thing. The couples were all strangers to me, but as it turns out, Mr. L. knows my husband from business! It was pretty freaky to discover this.

So okay. Now onto the food, which was, to use a quintessentially Long Island phrase, to die for.

I have to say that the restauranteur was generous to the point of indulgence, and I appreciated every minute of it. It was a four course gourmet meal, with a different wine served to compliment each course. Holy moly. Last time I had a meal like that it was at the sybaritic Blackberry Farm in Tennessee.

To start, we were served a prosciutto appetizer I don't quite have the culinary vocabulary to describe. So "yum" will have to suffice. That was followed by a wild mix mushroom risotto with truffle oil. I'm weak in the knees just thinking about it. It was one of the most delicious things I ever ate. The main course was braised lamb shank with Barolo sauce, served with potato puree and french string beans. The lamb was tender and tasty and perfectly fatty. I did not need a knife for this buttery meat, and I wish I could give you a taste right now! Dessert was a vanilla custard drizzled with strawberry sauce and served with assorted berries. Heavenly.

My only regret is that I drove myself there, so I couldn't fully indulge in all the extraordinary wines. I enjoyed them so much I wanted to guzzle every glass, but kept myself to a few sips of each. I have no idea how I managed this restraint!

Anyway, if the Caumsett people want to auction me off again next year, I'm in. Meanwhile, I'll definitely be going back to Jonathan's before then.

Friday, November 03, 2006

The Last Supper?

A few weeks ago at a charity auction to benefit Caumsett State Park, a woman bid $1750 for her and her friends to have dinner with me. Tonight is the night. I wouldn't be tense about it except that I just found out that it's six couples and me, which makes it a rather, er, reverent number of diners. (Do the math.) I just can't help wondering what they have in mind for me after the meal ...

Seriously, I don't expect to be crucified, and am, in fact, looking to meeting these folks and enjoying an amazing meal. If all goes well, I'll be back tomorrow to pimp the restaurant and fill in the details.

Not much else to report this week. I've been hard at work revising The Smart One and doing my normal running in place to keep up with the kids (especially hard when they're buzzed on Halloween candy). A bright spot is that the lovely Kathryn Koromilas, who's doing a very cool 5-minute-interview feature on her blog, was kind enough to include me. You can read it here.

FYI, I added some links to my blog this week, so check out what's new. And if you feel like you or someone you know is missing from the lists, drop me a line. Thanks!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Great gift for teachers

I'm getting ready to launch a new webpage promoting "Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA" as a great gift for teachers by offering free personalized bookplates, which I'll inscribe to the teacher. They'll look something like this:

Happy to say I've been getting wonderful endorsement quotes from teachers, which I plan on using in the promotion. Here's a sampling:

"Funnier and more touching than I ever could have imagined. Any teacher who's ever wondered about those PTA moms will love this book!" -- Lisa P., 3rd Grade Teacher, NY

"Masterful, brilliant and what a great movie this would make! It made me yearn for such a group of friends to be surrounded by, each so complex and fully human." -- Randall B., High School English Teacher, PA

"'Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA' is smart, laugh-out-loud fun. Who knew the PTA could be this exciting?" -- Lauran S., Continuing Ed Teacher, VA

"Get the book, slip between the cover and have the time of your life. This is a seriously funny, engaging, endearing read." -- Mary A., Art Teacher, NY

If you'd like one of these teacher bookplates, just send me a stamped, self-addressed envelope, and tell me the name of the teacher, the name of the family the book is from, and whether you'd like inscription A, B or C:

Inscription A:
To (Name),
A teacher the (Family name)s admire.
Best wishes,
Ellen Meister

Inscription B
To (Name),
Who gets an A+ from the (Family name)s!
Best wishes,
Ellen Meister

Inscription C
To (Name),
With warmest wishes,
Ellen Meister

Send the SASE and info to:
Ellen Meister
P.O. Box 52
Hicksville, NY 11802-0052

Of course, the bookplate offer isn't limited to teacher gifts. If you'd like one for yourself or anyone on your list, send me an SASE and I'll get it right out to you. Remember, though, that I won't be sending you an actual book. You'll have to do that part yourself. It's available at most bookstores, and online.