Fashion and Fantasy

I took yesterday off. After turning in the first draft of THE ASHLEYS 2: JEALOUS?, my brain needed a break. I’ve got Angels on Sunset Boulevard 2: THE STRIP on deck as well as BLUE BLOODS 3: REVELATIONS, which I plan on writing at the same time, which is how I wrote AOS 1 and BB2 (MASQUERADE)–that worked for me last time so I hope it works again.

Ever since I became a mom, one of the things I miss most is READING. When I’m writing my books, I try to absorb everything I can from the culture–I listen to tons of new music, watch lots of TV shows, read everything I can get my hands on. But with the baby, all that time–that extra, wool-gathering, looks-like-procrastinating time, is just GONE. I have a stack of magazines waist-high that I have not read since she was born. And oooh, how I MISS reading magazines. I love magazines. I love the escapist, perfect-glamorous-life world they offer.

I think that’s why I’m both a fashion and a fantasy addict. Because fashion is as much a fantasy as sword-and-sorcery or vampires.  I’ve always loved designers who were cutting edge, over-the-top and insane. On my desk right now is a tulle "corsage" from AsFour. Those of you who follow fashion know that one of them left the group in a huff and now they are called ThreeAsFour. (Which in my mind, is just brilliant!) Anyway, this tulle corsage is about a foot tall and wide. It is also a ferocious shade of fuschia. (That’s a tongue twister!)

I j’adore this tulle corsage. I wore it to a fabulous benefit in Central Park a few years ago, with a loud, psychedelic vintage ballgown that I bought at a Cleveland thriftstore for $2. Cleveland has the BEST thriftstores–I found a vintage cowgirl dress there for $10 that I later saw hanging in a Soho store that was selling for $350. Anyway, the tulle corsage was $300 or something, and I only wore it that once, on my hip, at the benefit. And now it just rests on my desk and once in a while my nephews come over and bat it across the room because they think it’s a particularly hilarious toy.

So many of my clothes from my fashion-editor years are similarly hysterical. My mom once asked me if I was trying out for the "What was she thinking" section of the tabloids when she saw what I was wearing to an awards show. (Let’s just say it made me look like a Jedi who’d lost her mind.) And yes, I think so many of the celebs featured in the "What was she thinking" section look BETTER than the boring clone-drones in the "best dressed" section.

Good taste is boh-ring and pernicious and I’d rather look ridiculous with my poufy tulle corsage than look "good" wearing some dress everyone else is wearing…

But the sad thing is that now that I live in L.A., there is no reason to wear kooky clothes. Oh yeah, some of the LA fashionistas do it, like the fabulous Lisa Eisner (no relation to Michael), whom I interviewed for Bazaar once and when I lamented that fast-forward fashion has no place in the land of sunshine, she told me she’d have dinner parties in the hot summer and throw her vintage furs over her Gucci floor-length gowns. Now, I would love to do the same, but there’s something about the heat that just makes you want to throw on flipflops and leave it at that. (Which I do. Right now I’m wearing an AC/DC t-shirt and Proenza shorts and Haviana flipflops).

Everytime I turn in a book it feels so anti-climactic. There’s so much hurry-hurry-hurry to get it done and then once it’s out the door and emailed to my editor, all I want to do is collapse. I just turn into a zombie. We’re going to the beach this weekend (breaking out the YSL caftan I bought for St. Tropez–I have YET to get to St. Tropez, since the baby came and we couldn’t travel–hopefully we will be able to get our butts out there next year) and then Palm Springs the week after that and Santa Barbara the week after that. Lots of traveling and tanning in my future…

Happy weekend everyone!