Friday, July 22, 2011

Winner of the BlogFest 2011 Giveaway!

The drawing for the first BlogFest 2011 giveaway took place Monday night
at Maddy's Ribs & BBQ in Decatur, Georgia by Ann Guilfoile.
 Ann is the very popular co-interviewer of her brother, author Kevin Guilfoile.
Assisting in the event were Kimmy Sue Ruby Lou Shaughnessy
and her hairier half Andy Shaughnessy.

Don't panic, I will have a second and maybe third winner next week.

Yes, it's Margaret!

And the winner is "Margaret!"
Congratulations, Margaret, as soon as we have a mailing addy the goodies will be heading your way.
And we plan another drawing or two from the same list so standby, and thank you for supporting Madame Perry's Salon. I hope to bring you more of the best writers for your enjoyment.

Kimmy Sue, Mme Perry, Andy and Ann congratulating Margaret.

Friday, July 15, 2011

BlogFest 2011 Is Here

BlogFest 2011, is the brilliant event by Cinnamon Brown, creator of the blog A Journey Of Books. You will learn more there about what fabulous goings on are in store.
Here is an excerpt:

It's that time! Now through July 17th at 11:59pm EST we will be participating in BlogFest 2011! I know you've heard about it! I know you're anxious! I know you're overflowing with excitement!

What is BlogFest?  BlogFest is a massive carnival of giveaways with a great collection of participating blogs. Each blog has a giveaway and the idea is to hop from blog to blog, entering all the giveaways your little heart desires. Hopefully you might even come across a few blogs you might want to bookmark and continue visiting. From "BlogFest 2011 - A Journey Of Books."

Madame Perry's Salon has a gift basket to giveaway with these goodies!

Autographed copy of A Very Simple Crime from author Grant Jerkins

A trio of e-books, The Other Boyfriend, Like Casablanca, and The Soul Bearers  
from Aussie author and TV host Sylvia Massara
Autographed CD from Raspberry Tea from journalist/musician Brian Bingaman

Jennifer Perry Combo T-shirt
T-Shirt and CD from The Jennifer Perry Combo

Leave a comment with your name, e-mail addy for notification, and state that you wish to be entered in the drawing.

Or send to my e-mail. Every blog participating has a giveaway, and A Journey Of Books has a grand prize so enter everything your hearts desires. I have links below to some of the blogs. You can find them all at A Journey Of Books.

Malevolent Musing
Manga Maniac Cafe
Meg Mims, Author 
Memoirs Of A Misanthrope
Michelle & Leslie's Book Picks
Michelle's Book Blog
A Journey Of Books

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Live From Hollywood And The Pages Of Vanity Fair - Jessica Handler!

And with a title like that I say let's get to it. Author and poet Collin Kelley, a dear mutual friend of mine and Jessica's, is here to talk about her memoir Invisible Sisters and see if she'll dish on the stars.

M.Perry: By the time you were nine both of your younger sisters had been diagnosed with terminal illnesses - Kostmann’s syndrome and leukemia - and you began introducing yourself as ‘the well sibling.” How, and when, did you realize that your family was different from others in this respect?

Jessica Handler: I probably didn’t consciously realize that we were different – and in so many ways, not only medically – until the moment that I said phrase to a doctor. I was nine, and, as you’ll read in Invisible Sisters, was at Duke University Hospital with both my younger sisters and our parents to undergo some lab work to try and figure out how this anomaly – two sisters with white cell disorders on opposing sides of a spectrum – came to be. (No one’s ever figured it out, as far as I know.) I introduced myself that day as “the well sibling.” This is a real term now, but I don’t know if it was then. I doubt it. I think I’d overheard my father say it about me, or perhaps I thought of it then, but it seemed to define my role pretty efficiently.

Even then, though, I knew that our family was normal for us. My sisters weren’t treated differently; they had slumber parties and pets and schoolwork, and lived very regular lives for the most part. It was normal for me to be that calm around doctors, for us to travel to medical centers and be examined. That experience is a little bit like living in the third person voice.

After Invisible Sisters came out, friends who’d known me even during those times told me they’d never known the extent of our story. That’s a testament, good or bad, that’s a reader’s call, to how normal our lives were.

MP: In writing a memoir you must spend a lot of time revisiting past situations and feelings. Did this ever bring about a different viewpoint on any situations for you while writing Invisible Sisters?

Jessica Handler
JH: Oh, of course. You can’t write memoir well when the crux of the story is so fresh in your mind and heart that the work is an emotional explosion rather than a crafted story. Of course there was a great deal of emotion in writing the book, sad and happy, but distance is crucial. I came to understand so much more about my father in writing the book, I think in part because by that time I was older than he was in the story I was writing. I viewed his losses and his reactions as a fellow adult, not solely as a wounded daughter.

Collin Kelley: Is there anything you didn't put in the memoir that wish you had now?

JH: I’m very satisfied with the scope of the book. I worked closely with my editor at Public Affairs, Morgen Van Vorst, who had great insights about shaping the book, which helped me at the time to figure out what I wanted and needed to put in that I had perhaps skated over in earlier drafts. There’s nothing in Invisible Sisters that I wouldn’t tell someone in conversation. That said, there are pieces of my family’s stories that I have omitted due to personal privacy issues and the fact that those bits weren’t crucial to the story I was telling. Those I won’t tell you in conversation. They’re just for me.

MP: It was so exciting to see you in Vanity Fair magazine. Tell us about it. Fun? Did you get to keep the dress? Anything to dish?

JH: The Vanity Fair shoot was amazing fun, and after eight hours on various lawns of the Swan House I was pretty much in giggles the whole time. I didn’t get to keep the dress, but honestly, what would I do with it? I’m a jeans and t-shirt gal. I knew five of the women before the shoot, and had of course heard of everyone, so it was a delight to meet the others. I am a huge admirer of Natasha Trethewey’s poetry particularly, so meeting her was kind of a fan-girl thrill.

Hmm, what to dish... It took two passes with dish soap to get the ‘product’ out of my hair. It doesn’t stand up like that on its own! And I learned that couture comes in two-digit sizes, not just in size four. And I’m wearing my grandmother’s pearls in that shot, because she would have kvelled. I texted my publicist pretty much every twenty minutes to essentially shriek with joy. The whole day was extremely girly.

Collin Kelley
CK: Tell us about working in Hollywood? Can you dish on a famous celebrity encounter?

JH: I’m still so touched and honored to have met Divine; Harris Glenn Milstead. He was a guest on a talk/variety show where I was a production coordinator, and I spent some time talking with him in the green room. John Waters’s movies had been big with my college friends and me. He was kind, soft-spoken, and just so elegant and gentlemanly. And he was wearing a grey pinstriped three-piece suit and a big diamond earring. I just loved him. And no, I won’t tell you here who the rock star at the after hours club is in the LA chapter of Invisible Sisters, but if you ask me in person, I might. The club was Club Zero, on North Cahuenga though, if that means anything to any 1980s archivist-types.

JP: Hmm, maybe when the three of us meet up at Agave for some nibbly things and a few of Collin's stories. Thank you so much for spending time with us, Jessica.

JH: Of course, happy to spend time with. Soon, IRL.

CK: XO Love and smoochies!

Jessica Handler's nonfiction has appeared in, More Magazine, Southern Arts Journal, and Ars Medica. You can visit Jessica Handler's website, or follow her on Twitter.