(Every Friday I interview a different person and share that interview with you. Perhaps they will be a fellow author. Perhaps one of my neighbors. Maybe the bagger at the grocery store. A member of my family. A follower of this blog. Maybe it will be you! Hey, it could happen.)
Today's INFF guest is the fantabulous Melanie Jacobson. I am super excited to have Melanie here today because, quite frankly, she's hilarious--and, as an added bonus, she's hilarious in that witty, sometimes sassy way that I particularly enjoy. She has a brand new book out this month, a romantic comedy, entitled "The List." Go check out her website and blog and a first-chapter excerpt and then come back and thank me for the invaluable tip.If you'd like to be interviewed for "I Need Friends" Friday, shoot me off an email: friends at sarahmeden dot com!
Let's get to know Melanie!
Let's get to know Melanie!
SME: Welcome to INFF!
Melanie: Thanks, glad to be here!
SME: There is a longstanding tradition here at INFF to open an interview by discussing food. I support this tradition. Heck, I started this tradition. So.. do you have a favorite flavor of cake?
Melanie: I can't lie. I'm not a huge cake fun. It's so often dry. However, the spectacular exception to this is carrot cake. I love, adore, and would marry carrot cake. Except my husband is awesome, so I'll just love and adore carrot cake.
SME: My husband would also swear his life-long allegiance to carrot cake. Luckily I am far cuter than some sorry slice of cake.
So if you're not a cake person, what do you have on your birthday?
Melanie: Oh, Cold Stone ice cream cake. And actually, my birthday is Christmas Eve, so I have ice cream cake PLUS whatever eight thousand Christmas treats are lying around. I like to spend my birthday being fat. Actually, I like to spend all of December that way.
SME: See, and I don't limit myself to December. I believe in being thicker than I should be all year long!
Melanie: Well, I try to rein it in. I have a great December and then a really depressing January. Then in February, I pull out some exercise videos.
My husband today said, "Your pants are too big." I kissed him.
SME: I once asked my husband if he thought my wedding dress would still fit me. He said, "It's probably too big for you now."
Melanie: And that's how you know you married a keeper.
SME: When I first read that, I thought it said, "you married a leper." I thought, "What does that mean?"
Melanie: That means you're super biblical. Somehow.
Speaking of books (wow, that was a really lame transition), you have a new one out!!! Tell us about it!
Melanie: It's called The List, and I have to say in the interest of full disclosure, that if it improves your mind at all, I've failed utterly. However, if it makes you laugh and pass a great Friday night, we're more on the right track.
It's about a girl with a list of 25 things to do before she gets married . . .
And then, a boy comes along. They do that, sometimes.
There is much surfing and flirting and sassiness.
SME: I think that is the new subtitle of my autobiography: "There was much surfing and flirting and sassiness."
Although there would probably need to be an asterisk and a footnote explaining that I have never surfed in my entire life.
Melanie: Me, either. But my husband does and so do a ton of my friends. I got to ask lots and lots of questions about surfing and while away many hours watching the surfers in Huntington Beach from the pier.
SME: Tough gig, Melanie.
Melanie: It's the life of an artist. Or someone smart enough to write about beaches and surfing.
SME: On the day this interview posts, I will be on my way to Portland, OR in the name of research. This research will involve eating Italian food and wandering around a 60,000+ square foot bookstore. I'll try to endure it somehow.
Melanie: Powell's? That's on my personal bucket list.
SME: Yes! Powells!
Melanie: I'm officially jealous.
SME: I'm jealous of myself!
So do you have something new you're working on?
Melanie: I'm actually in revisions on my fourth manuscript. Love it. The manuscript. Hate revisions.
SME: Do you have a teaser for us on that manuscript, or is it top secret?
Melanie: Well, let's start with book #2.
SME: Sounds good to me.
Melanie: That comes out in the fall and it's about a girl whose roommate sets her up with an online dating profile without telling her. But before Jessie can kill her roommate Sandy, a cute guy emails her. And then hilarity ensues.
SME: I love hilarity!
Melanie: I believe in it whole-heartedly. It's like a personal article of faith. "I believe the whole world is improved by hilarity."
SME: I have another book coming out this fall, as well. We should throw ourselves a party!
Melanie: Yay! Which one is it? Persephone?
SME: It is Seeking Persephone!!!
Melanie: Yay again! I read it when it was up for the Whitney and loved it. That's great news.
SME: Speaking of which, both your books should be eligible for a 2011 Whitney, right?
Melanie: I think so. I hope they're Whitney-worthy. Now that would be a kick in the pants. Except it wouldn't hurt. So I guess it would be something besides a kick in the pants.
SME: We'll have to work on that metaphor.
So, another traditional question: What's your favorite continent?
Melanie: North America. Europe is a close second. Or a very distant one, if we're being literal and geographical. But um, America rocks, and all that. Specifically, I like the United States part of America.
SME: I too am a fan of the United States part of America. We are very patriotic, you and I.
Melanie: Well, my eyes are blue, I'm very, very pale, and uh . . . my blood is red. I'm SUPER patriotic.
SME: You know, I actually heard the distant strains of "America, the Beautiful" when you said that. Wow.
Melanie: Right? I even vote.
SME: And at our house we have instituted a dictatorship just so our children can grow up to appreciate living in a free country.
Melanie: It's the only way, really. That's just good parenting.
SME: So... you wanna play a game?
Melanie: Always. They call me the "Mad Game Player of the OC." They totally don't. It would be weird if they did.
SME: But they could.
Melanie: They could. And I probably wouldn't punch "them."
SME: But would you punch "me"?
Melanie: No. I mean no disrespect by this, but it would require a deep knee bend to do that, and I'm lazy.
SME: Oh. I know. This is one of the many advantages of being teeny tiny.
Melanie: Maybe I could kick you?
SME: The kicking... not such an advantage.
Melanie: Well, I just won't kick you. How's that?
SME: Perfect. Especially since games are so much more fun than kicking.
Melanie: All right. I'm game. For the game.
SME: We are going to play one of my favorites: "Rapid Fire Q&A." I will ask you a series of questions and you give me the first answer you think of -- no explanations allowed!
Melanie: Danger, Will Robinson, Danger! Maybe I'll need Steven Tyler's new American Idol anti-swear shield but I'll do my best.
SME: Perhaps I should put this interview on a 5-second delay.
Melanie: I'll just put my brain on a 5-second delay. We'll be okay.
SME: Alright. Here we go... Favorite literary genre?
Melanie: Contemporary American fiction. Or chick lit. Or YA. Uh . . .
SME: A Saturday-morning cartoon from your childhood?
Melanie: Thundercats? Ooooh! SMURFS! Yes!
SME: The last restaurant you ate at?
Melanie: An international tapas place in Santa Monica called Naresh's.
SME: An international destination you want to visit before you die?
SME: A country you can trace your ancestry back to?
Melanie: Ireland. Oh, and France. Big time. My family is Cajun. Sorry. Explaining.
SME: A favorite teacher?
Melanie: Mrs. Herring, 11th grade American Lit. A great old broad.
SME: Favorite color?
Melanie: Blue, today. Sometimes green.
SME: What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?
Melanie: An African or European swallow?
SME: YES!!!! We are now officially Bestest Friends!!!
Melanie: Whoo hoo!
SME: That brings us to the portrait portion of the interview!
*draws a portrait*
Melanie: It's all about the shoes! Deadly high heels. Lethal! Four inches! Please? Or else flip flops. We wear a lot of those around here, too.
SME: I went with ballet flats. I hope that's okay. (But there are flipflops on the cover of the book you're holding)
Melanie: Now I have to go buy my very first ballet flats so it will be a true portrait. My husband will not be happy. I, however, am thrilled. Field trip to the mall, kids!
LOVE the book in the pic. Great portrait.
SME: Awesome. Any time you "need" to buy a new pair of shoes, let me know what you're looking for, I'll draw a portrait with you wearing them and then you'll have no choice but to go get them.
Melanie: Ahahahaha! Finally, a way around my limited shoe budget!
SME: I'm here for you.
Melanie: This made it totally worth doing the interview. Who knew it would end in more shoes?
SME: We have now reached the final question of the interview: Top 5 reasons this is the best blog interview you've ever done. Ready. Go.
Melanie: Well, for sure 1) I get to buy more shoes now.
2) Your husband indirectly validated my love for carrot cake.
3) I discovered a new layer of my own patriotism.
4) We talked Monty Python. Love that.
5) Being on INFF because I have an actual book out has long been a dream of mine. (How long have you been doing INFF? That's how long the dream has been.) *Sniff.
SME: I have been at it for just over 18 months now. Not too shabby.
Melanie: You need to throw you blog a toddler party! Or no, that's in kid years. 18 months in blog years is like, Happy 21st! Or something.
SME: Thanks for joining us at INFF. I'll think of you as I peruse the aisles at Powells!
Melanie: Yay! Thanks for having me for the interview.
SME:*cue exit music* Well, this has been "I Need Friends" Friday. Come back next week when I will make another friend!!
I am looking for anyone and everyone, whether or not you think you are interesting. You'll get a fantastic stick figure portrait of yourself, a little promotion (if you're looking for that sort of thing) and the opportunity to tell your friends and family that you've been interviewed by SME, er... by ME!