New Post on Scary Mommy Today!

My Rotten CookiesI’m so excited to be back on Scary Mommy. I have a new post up there today called It’s Time For Us To Embrace A New Kind of Fairy Tale. It’s all about what got me to write the My Rotten Stepbrother books, specifically the crummy examples most fairy tales set for girls. Check it out and let me know what you think!

And don’t forget… it’s just two days until the books come out and My Rotten Release Day Chart Twerk! Mark your calendars and order your copies at 12pm your local time, this Tuesday, August 1, 2017!

Finally, if you’re in the New York area, stop by my launch party at Anderson’s Book Shop in Larchmont on Tuesday, 8/1 at 6pm. There will be books, stickers, signings and adorable little cookies like the ones in the picture above. I’d love to see you there!

Announcing: My Rotten Release Day Chart Twerk!

blogbookhead_3If there’s one thing I’ll never fail to procrastinate about, it’s promoting my books. I mean, I worked really hard on them, I’m super proud of them, and I wrote them hoping lots of people would enjoy them. But taking that step to say, “Please buy them” just feels kind of, y’know, icky.

Promotion is the writers’ equivalent of a root canal, a tax audit, or sitting through a marathon of all 97 Transformers movies back to back. I would do just about anything short of colluding with Russia to get around it.

So I’ll make this quick.

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Maddie – loves fairy tales, can’t stand her stepbrother

My books are coming out, and I think you’re going to love them. They’re fun, irreverent twists on four beloved fairy tales, with lots of humor and heart. They’re great for kids and fun for parents who like to read to kids. They answer questions like “What if the glass slipper fit one of the wicked stepsisters before Cinderella got a chance to try it on?”, “What if Belle wasn’t beautiful?” and “What if the seven dwarfs were kick-butt karate masters?” You can read more about them here.

 

Obviously, I’d love to see them sell a bunch of copies. Then, hopefully my publisher would order more books in the series and I’d get to spend even more time with these characters I’ve grown to love. So that’s my pitch.

Um… please buy them?

Since there are four books, you can take your pick! Cinderella, Beauty & the Beast, Aladdin, Snow White. Buy whichever one is your favorite fairy tale, and you’ll see how Maddie and Holden mess it up and then try to fix it. (If you want to read them in order, Cinderella is book 1, but reading them in order isn’t essential.) Check one out and see if you like it — or heck, just grab all four at once! That’s a great idea, too! (Ick.)

 

Have I convinced you?

Well, wait! Don’t do it yet!

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Holden – can’t stand fairy tales, loves driving his stepsister nuts

Here’s the thing: if everyone who’s planning to buy one or more My Rotten Stepbrother books does so at roughly the same time, they’ll make a much bigger splash. They’ll rank higher and get more attention, which could lead to more people discovering them. I did this with my memoir Mommy Man, and it made a huge difference. Thanks to all you awesome readers and followers, that book went to #1 in its category, #2 on Amazon’s Movers & Shakers chart and #260 overall. (That’s right. It was in the top 300 of every single book on Amazon!)

So I’m asking you to do me a huge favor. If you’re going to buy one or more of the My Rotten Stepbrother books, please do it as close to 12pm on their release day, August 1st, as you can.

If Amazon is your preferred vendor, then do it there. But if you like to support brick and mortar stores or another online retailer, then please stick with them. Anyone who sells books in 2017 is OK by me. Or buy the eBook if that’s what you prefer. Those are great, too. FYI a fuller list of vendors and links to their My Rotten Stepbrother pages can be found here.

And of course, if you’re coming to one of my events, I’d love for you to wait and buy the book(s) in person so I can sign them and support the stores that are hosting me.

august1Tuesday, August 1, 2017. 12pm your time, wherever that is. Or as close as possible to then as you can manage.

Mark your calendar, follow my tweets or leave a comment below if you’d like to be reminded by email.

OK, thanks for listening to my shameless sales pitch. See, that wasn’t so painful after all. And I did it without any help from the Kremlin. Yay me.

(Ick.)

 

Does Belle Have Stockholm Syndrome? Emma Watson Responds – and so do I.

mrsr-beauty-and-the-beast

As pretty much everyone in the universe knows by now, Disney’s live-action version of Beauty & the Beast comes out on March 17. And as readers of this blog know, my book My Rotten Stepbrother Ruined Beauty & the Beast (along with 3 other books in the series) comes out August 1.

beautybeastdisneySo I was really excited to read this interview with the new Belle, Emma Watson, from Entertainment Weekly, where she addresses the tricky subject of whether Belle’s love for the Beast stems from Stockholm Syndrome, a psychological condition where prisoners fall in love with their captor.

“Belle actively argues and disagrees with [Beast] constantly. She has none of the characteristics of someone with Stockholm Syndrome because she keeps her independence, she keeps that freedom of thought.”

– Emma Watson, Entertainment Weekly

It’s a great point, although I address the subject a bit differently in my version. In My Rotten Stepbrother Ruined Beauty & the Beast, Holden, the rotten kid in the title, enjoys needling his fairy tale-loving stepsister by pointing out plot holes in her favorite stories. With Beauty & the Beast, one of the things he mentions is how messed-up it is that Belle falls in love with a creepy recluse who’s holding her prisoner.

Yes, I’ve written a kids’ book about Stockholm Syndrome.

It’s all presented in a fun, kid-friendly way, of course. Holden insists that there’s no way Belle really loves this guy, and soon, the feuding step-siblings are thrust into the tale, where they become characters who have to give the story back its Happily Ever After. Holden is a lawyer who has to defend the Beast against kidnapping charges, and his step-sister Maddie is Belle, whose father is trying to deprogram her and get her to date other men.

I love that Emma Watson put so much thought into this topic, and after you see the movie, I hope you’ll check out my version of the story for a whole different perspective, with an unexpected fairy tale ending all its own.

Coming Soon: My Rotten Stepbrother Books!

I’m happy to announce that my new book series for kids has a publication date! The series is called MY ROTTEN STEPBROTHER RUINED… and will be available from Capstone Publishing on August 1, 2017. The books are about a girl named Maddie who loves fairy tales and her obnoxious stepbrother, who loves pointing out the plot holes in her favorite stories. His gripes are actually pretty spot-on… so much so that he breaks the stories, and the two feuding step-siblings have to go into the stories to try to fix them and give the characters back their happily ever after. It’s a fun series for kids around age 6-10 with lots of humor and surprises.

I’ll post when they’re available for pre-order, and I plan to do some events and live readings around the release. There may even be some chart twerking involved. In the meantime, you’ll notice some changes to this site as I focus on promoting my new career as a children’s author!

Here’s a little more info on each book in the series, along with the official cover reveals! The artwork is by an amazing designer named Aleksei Bitskoff.

mrsr-cinderella

Book 1: MY ROTTEN STEPBROTHER RUINED CINDERELLA

Holden points out the ridiculousness of a man needing a shoe to track down the woman he supposedly fell in love with. Wouldn’t he remember her face? And don’t a lot of women have the same size foot? What a bad plan!

Soon, he and Maddie are thrust into the story, only to find that the Prince is now engaged to a Wicked Stepsister, and the Fairy Godmother is a little miffed that Cinderella disobeyed the one rule she gave her and stayed out past midnight. Will Maddie and Holden be able to set things right, or will Cinderella remain a miserable housemaid forever?

mrsr-beauty-and-the-beast

Book 2: MY ROTTEN STEPBROTHER RUINED BEAUTY & THE BEAST

Holden doesn’t get it: if the Beast gets cursed for being shallow, why is he allowed to break the spell by marrying a total babe? If that’s the case, has he really learned anything? And how do they know Belle’s feelings are real? Maybe she has Stockholm Syndrome, where prisoners fall in love with their captors.

The next thing they know, Holden has become a lawyer in a fairy tale version of France, forced to defend the Beast on kidnapping charges. Maddie is a confused Belle, convinced by her dad to play the field and see if there are better options out there than a short-tempered monster who held her in his castle against her will. Together, they explore where beauty really comes from and figure out if Beauty & Beast were really destined to be together.

mrsr-aladdin

Holden thinks Aladdin has it all wrong. He can wish for anything, and all he wants is for a princess to fall in love with him? Lame! If he had three wishes, the first thing he’d wish for is a million more wishes. Then, a hoverboard. Oh, and having no parents would be great, too.

Well, all his wishes come true when he becomes Aladdin, and for the first time, he has no interest in fixing the fairy tale. Life with a genie waiting on you hand and foot is SWEET! How will Maddie convince him to give all this up so Aladdin can marry the princess and they can go home? It won’t be easy, since she finds herself thrust into the story as a camel, and her rotten stepbrother refuses to use one of his wishes to change her back to a human.

mrsr-snow-white

Book 4: MY ROTTEN STEPBROTHER RUINED SNOW WHITE

Holden has been messing up fairy tales so often that now Maddie can’t help doing it herself. She’s playing Snow White in the school play, and she can’t help wondering why the princess doesn’t just gorge on some greasy food and give herself acne to get her jealous stepmother off her case. Holden has his own thoughts, like how Snow White should be training the dwarfs in karate so they can kick the Queen’s wicked butt.

Soon, Holden is the Huntsman, Maddie is Snow White, and a major showdown is looming. Plus, the step-siblings are given the chance to break the spell that sends them into all these fairy tales once and for all. Plus, Holden gets to make a decision that could get his annoying stepsister out of his life for good. What will he choose?

* * * * *

Can’t wait for you to read these books. I’ve had so much fun writing them, and they’re already garnering rave reviews from my own kids. More details soon!