Monthly Archives: July 2008

A Comment on Comments or How Spammers Ruin it for Everyone

Hey all,

I hope this post is able to stick. I’m having a bit of techie trouble on the site. My admin told me that we were getting a bunch of wildly inappropriate (read x-rated) spam on the site’s comments EEEEK!!!! and that unless I have a 24-7 monitor, even with the security in the comments section, it can’t guarantee that it won’t happen again. So comments are donzo. Sigh. And apparently we’ve lost comments on the most recent posts. Arrggh. I did so enjoy hearing from everyone and especially the raging controversy over Jerry’s poem. 😉 You can still email me at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) read and respond to all the emails!


Sick Kid

Disneyland was great, but exhausting. Am I becoming a one-note mom? I find everything about motherhood exhausting except for those magical awesome moments when you play with your child and she laughs and it’s just… it’s awesome. I once read a study that said the most grueling boring chores of life is childcare, but the most magical, transcendent moments in life are with your child… So as hard as it is, it’s also the most wonderful thing in the world.

And the scariest thing in the world is when you have a sick kid, like we did the morning we were leaving the Happiest Place on Earth. Suffice to say, we were covered in puke from 8AM until 4PM, when we got her in a proper hospital. I’m usually a pretty even-keeled mom, I don’t really panic too much and try not to over-react and be over-protective, I have two nephews, so I’ve kind of seen a lot with my sister’s kids and know not to panic. But when the kid started vomiting Exorcist-style and didn’t stop…well, PANIC BUTTON was pushed and we zoomed into the nearest ER.

We were in a not-so-nice part of town and when we first entered the hospital we were like, Omigod, where are we, Iraq??? It was really the dirtiest, most neglected and saddest hospital ER’s we’ve ever seen. Part of us wanted to zoom back to our regular hospital but the other part was really worried about the kid and figured, okay, so the hospital doesn’t look that great, but maybe it’s better if SOMEONE sees her now. The hospital was one of those “community” hospitals where they have to take people in even when they don’t have insurance.

We stayed there for a few hours while they took Mattie’s vital signs and gave her some medicine that would help the vomiting. But then they started saying they wanted to do blood work, x-rays and put a catheter on the kid… and Mike’s and my warning bells just started lighting up… by that point the kid hadn’t vomited in two hours, and we asked if it was okay if we took Mattie to our regular hospital if they were going to do all this work on her, we’d just feel more comfortable if they did it in our regular hospital..(also we did not want to end up in the news as another TRAGIC HOSPITAL story. you know? it looked like that kind of place.)

The nurses were all very nice and told us that was fine with them and we zoomed back to the comfy, hotel-like confines of our regular hospital, which is one of the nicest and most acclaimed hospitals in the world (Huntington Memorial in Pasadena – which looks like a Four Seasons hotel) and the experience was just 100% different. For starters, we saw the attending physician immediately, and Dr. Gregory had a really great bedside manner with the kid, and calmed us all down. (Whereas at the community hospital we never even got to see a doctor for HOURS. Actually we left without a doctor ever seeing us. It was all nurses.) And Dr. Gregory told us there was no need for bloodwork, x-ray or catheter because after talking to us and checking out the kid, he figured it was just a viral infection that went to her tummy and should clear up in a couple of days.

The medicine the community hospital gave Mattie also made her feel better, and the anti-nausea medicine from Huntington also helped, and she was soon running up and down the aisles demanding crackers. And she didn’t throw up at all anymore.

We were just so relieved that she didn’t have to have any of those invasive procedures…and we were also just so horrified at how unequal medical care is in this country. Mike and I pretty much live in this sheltered, comfy bubble, and my dad’s been in and out of Huntington with his surgeries and chemo and we have really really great care… he gets the best drugs and his doctors are so aggressive and great… and we almost take it for granted… it really sickened me how the level of care at the community hospital was so low and awful compared to what we got at the fancy, rich hospital.

It just shouldn’t be like that. This is America right??? There were tons of other really concerned and panicked parents at the community hospital and I just felt ill thinking of how that hospital has to treat their patients—who are CHILDREN. Blood work, x-rays and catheters on a 20 month old who doesn’t need it seems gross to me, when all the kid really needed was a real doctor to treat her symptoms and figure it out. you know???

When I was in school in Manila, our private school would make it a point to expose us to the lesser fortunate parts of the city—we had to visit the slums, the orphanages, and the metal wards—it was part of the school’s philosophy to make their privileged students aware of how privileged they were, and how that wasn’t the case for a lot of people in the world. Our experience at the community hospital was like that—-we saw what it was like for people who didn’t have insurance, and theoretically, we’ve always believed in universal healthcare anyway, but we’ve never really experienced what it would be like if WE ourselves did not have it. It’s scary, people, it’s really scary. I think what made us book out of there was when the crackhead in the next bed (i’m sorry: she really looked like a crackhead though) told us “this is the worst place in the world.” and we looked at each other and said, YEAH, WE’RE OUTTA HERE. Which is not a disserve to the staff—all of whom were so helpful and kind and obviously doing what they can in very, very reduced circumstances…and it looked like the nurses really didn’t want Mattie to have to have all those procedures either, but it was standard procedure with sick kids at that hospital. Isn’t that insane??

Anyway, I’ve go to tend to the sick kid now and try to get my books done and Revelations just came in for third pass edits (which means it’s all set out like the book – it looks gorgeous!!! by the way and my editor says it’s her favorite one yet… so i hope those are all good signs.)

Also -emails have gone out asking for Poetry contest entrants’ addresses – so please send yours in now! And the finalists and top 3 finalists should be contacted by today. I just got the large box from Hyperion with all the chapter samplers, so our fulfillment center (ie, my little brother, who will always be little to me even though he is 29 and just graduated columbia business school and newly engaged to be married—anyway, he’s helping me out this summer while he’s got some free time before he starts his big finance job in nyc) is ready to go.

take care everyone.


Grand Prize Winnahs!!!

And now, here are the overall winners! Dah, dah, dah, dah….

Third Place: A Blue Bloods Story by Caitlin H.

A lot of the poems we received re-told the Blue Bloods story, and I liked this one the best because of the clever rhymes and it had a killer ending as well. Very charming. Congrats Caitlin!

A Blue Bloods Story

Listen New Yorkers, and you will hear:
The story of the Blue Bloods living here.

They go to Duchesne Prep you know,
And in the dark, they even glow.

There’s Mimi, Jack, Schuyler and Bliss:
But there’s no need to worry, unless they give you that Sacred Kiss.

There’s Oliver, Schuyler’s best friend and conduit, but listen:
A conduit has nothing to do with being an electrician.

Mimi and Jack are bonded they say,
But with Schuyler in the picture, there’s going to be hell to pay.

Schuyler is a half-blood, haven’t you heard?
Daughter of Gabrielle and a Red Blood, isn’t that absurd!

Red Bloods, Blue Bloods, Silver Bloods are all the same?
Oh, no, no, no, no, honey, not in this game.

Lets start at Mimi’s party after the ball,
That’s where everything started to fall.

Blue Bloods attended with their fashionista smiles,
While others could only get in after awhile.

Look over there, come on, come quick.
Who’s that guy kissing that Van Alen chick?

Is that Jack Force? What is he doing!
Did Mimi see and is that why she’s stewing?

Back at school we meet a new mate:
Kingsley Martin, who should have no problem getting a date.

After Valentine’s Day things started to crack.
Because of Kingsley and Mimi, and the spells they turned black.

Mimi got caught, oh what a pity.
And a small earthquake rocked New York City.

Now who is to save her, and who is to blame?
A Blood Trial will tell us, and give us the name.

Listen dear people for it is clear:
A battle is coming, and the book of Revelations is near.

-Caitlin H.

Second Place: Blue Bloods Banter by Shaina S.C.

This is a poem I liked very much—the voice is very clever and cool. The imagery is unexpected and very vibrant as well, and I thought it was also very original. Shaina, you got me at the first two stanzas.  Love!!

Blue Bloods Banter

Grab a pair of fangs-
Still sticky from Halloween
And those Batman wings
Stitched to your spleen.

Please, are you kidding me?
Has your head gone soft?
You’d never see a real vamp out like that-
Seriously, just take it off.

Take a good look, Red Blood-
The truth’s in plain sight-
The Blue Bloods are walking
Around in daylight.

We’ve conquered the media,
The billboards, and-by all means-
When we’re not out sucking blood,
We’re wearing your jeans.

We’re strutting our stuff-
Though you’d never suspect it-
But we can’t get enough
Of the limelight tonight.

Can’t you hear your veins
In the moonlight…
Throbbing and throbbing-
We like it-we love it-
So just one little bite?

You can’t make it; can’t fake it-
‘Cause this is how it goes.
So stop playing Batman
And watch us pros.

-Shaina S.C.

And the winner of the poetry contest is Jerry W. with her poem “Revelations”.

Jerry’s poem is inspired by the song “Revolution” by the Beatles. I loved this poem because it made me laugh out loud, is very clever, and reminded me of something I would have done to win a contest. This is VERY me. So Jerry, congrats, (Jerry is a very cute girl btw, I remember her from the Blue Bloods party in New York. Hi Jerry!).

And without further ado, the winning poem:
(Sing in the tune of “Revolution” by the Beatles)

You say you’re giving away “Revelations”
Well you know
We all want to get sneak peeks
You tell me that it’s based on innovation
Well you know
We all want to get sneak peeks
But when you talk about competition
Don’t you know you can count me in
Don’t you know it’s gonna be alright
Alright Alright

You say there’s only one solution
Well you know
You can always photocopy more and mail it to everyone (MDLC: I did think about that Jerry!)
You ask me for a contribution
Well you know
We’re all sending you the best we can
But when you tell us to give as much as we desire
All I can tell you is sister you’re lighting our fire
Don’t you know it’s gonna be alright
Alright Alright

You say there’s only one grand prize winner
Well you know
we all want to convince your mind
You tell me I need to use my imagination
Well you know
I always think outside of the box
But if we go around boasting and playing foul
We ain’t going to make it with Mel-DLC anyhow
Don’t you know know it’s gonna be alright
Alright Alright

-Jerry Wang

Well, all right!! Thanks Jerry, thanks Caitlin, thanks Shaina, and thanks to everyone who sent in a poem, or is just enjoying reading these poems on the blog.

I write the books to please myself first and foremost, but I’m so glad you all like them too…

Q: Mel, you just ran an awesome poetry contest, what are you going to do now????


Everyone don mouse ears and sing the Em-Eye-See song. See you when I get back. It just occurred to me that since I write these Blue Bloods books for Hyperion (which is owned by Disney) I am actually a Disney employee in a sense. So in a way, I’m going home!


Top Poems (General)

Here are some poems that don’t fit any category, which I liked a lot since they took an unexpected POV or structure.

I liked the imagery in this poem, especially in the last line, just seemed very cool in a vampire-y sort of way. Nice.

Silver, Blue & Red

Wet Diamond drops
Sparkling on the floor
Shinning silver
In the sunlight

Scented flowers
In the wind
Glowing blue
With moonlight

Pearls of love
Scented with Roses
Drops of Red
Coming through.

-Joanna F.

The writer says this poem is in the voice of a Red Blood who’s about to receive the Sacred Kiss. Very cool. I have a soft spot for poems about clubbing and the nightlife, so this appealed to me very much.

Time to Party

Party’s jumpin’
Music’s thumpin’
Time to go wild.

‘Cause the moon’s replaced the sun
We’re gonna have some fun!
Time to freak out.

At Block 112, now we’re dancin’
Bitches are prancin’
Time to get down.

Boys dance over
“Gotta have ‘er”
Time to show off.

We start kissin’
But something’s missin’
Time for more.

He starts bitin’
So excitin’
Time for blood.

Best BF ever
Smart sweet and clever
Time for love.

-Ashleigh H.

The writer of the following poem submitted a bunch that I liked very much. I liked this one the most because of the title and the last line, which I find just so cool.


The cruel joke of it
Impeccably dressed blood fiends?
They can’t just be privileged;
Establishing new species,
Is okay, too…

-Amanda M.

This one was a clever one, and it’s hard to do these poems without forcing some of the lines, but this one reads well and works in the structure. Nice.

Blood veins tell of the past
Love unexpected
Unity of a twin bond
Eternal life

Brutal death of a fellow classmate
Lucifer’s downfall
Occult evil lurking
Odd prophecy set upon Schuyler Van Allen
Duchesne Academy for the wealthy and privileged
Sunset years a danger for Silver Bloods approach.

-Kaitlin J.

The writer of this poem wrote that the poem was no way an insult to the book or to me, but she just wanted to examine the flipside of the Blue Bloods’ world. Catharine, no worries at all! I liked the poem a lot because it deals with the subtext of my book…how things are not as they seem. 

Mirror Image

Welcome to Duchesne, school for the privileged
(Playground for snobs.)

Meet our students, leaders of tomorrow
(Self-centered, apathetic, pleasure-seeking adolescents.)

Examine our values and morals
(Prestige, exclusiveness, wealth.)

The things that matter most: dedication, loyalty, pride
(Prada, Marc Jacobs, Dolce & Gabbana.)

We are the Blue Bloods, ancient and all-knowing
(Doomed and delusional.)

We pride ourselves on our dedication to the best for humanity
(Lest humanity best us.)

-Catharine K.

This one is about the hardcover edition of Blue Bloods and is apparently dedicated to me. 🙂  I liked this one a lot because of its originality, and hey, I have a bit of Mimi in me. Flattery gets you everywhere.


The markings
On her neck
Caught my eyes

The letters
On the cover
Made me unlock
The pages

Called me to read
And I fell
Into another world

Loosing myself

-Saba H.

Awwww. Very cool! Next up: The Top Three Poems!!!


PS- We are just starting to send out emails asking everyone for their addresses. Be patient, you will all be contacted! 🙂

Top Funny Poems

A lot of the poems we received were very funny and clever, and I really want to thank you all for making me laugh and bringing me hours of entertainment. It was really, really hard to choose. I chose these poems because they really captured my sense of humor.

The last line of this poem always makes me cackle!

School of the Beautiful

look at me.”
It’s Mimi!

Holy cow,
She looks just…wow!
Sky’s gone from goth to KAPOW!

“No really ya’ll,
it’s just a little modeling call!”
Oh Bliss is such a doll!

Oh dear God,
look at his bod.
Ooh Jack, give me the nod!

Silly Red Bloods,
good looks are for immortals!

-Jen C.

Limericks are fab, and I thought this one was fun:

Jack, A Limerick

There once was a hot vampire named Jack,
With a jealous sister who always had his back.
Until he fell in love with another girl
Which made Mimi hurl.
The poor, hot, handsome vampire named Jack.

-Jaclyn G.

The first and last lines of this poem always makes me laugh. Since it came in untitled I have a suggested title: Jack’s Dilemma.

Jack’s Dilemma

Let’s face it, that whole “your mom’s so hot” joke is overplayed
But Gabrielle is my soul’s light in ways that cannot fade.

Yet her daughter Schuyler has a hold that could lead me far astray
If only I weren’t so freaked by what my twin Mimi would say.

I know I’m hurting my destined mate as I close her from my mind
But I’m protecting her from images of Schuyler she would find.

Do I embrace Death and Destruction though my fate may (literally) bite?
Or turn my back to all I know and go into the Light?

Two amazing girls to choose from but I don’t know who.
I know I sound a spoiled brat but what’s a guy to do?

-Kasi H.

I particularly loved all the poems about Mimi’s vanity and bitchiness. They were hilarious! I think I liked this one the most because of the last line. It just says it all…

You All Wish You Were Me-Me

Queen of New York, she has it all
Had the hottest date for the 400 Ball.

Rules the place known as Duchesne School,
She can make even Schuyler’s rags look cool.

Can get any guy she wants, though she only wants one
Still she leads them on, just for fun.

If someone were to claim her other half,
They’d suffer the impending doom of her wrath.

Schuyler’s had her eyes on Jack and now she’s moving in—
Though she might try, she’ll never win.

Her closet boasts labels from Gucci to Chanel,
Get on her wrong side and she’ll make your life a living hell.

Wherever she goes is the place to be,
I’d be jealous of her, except she’s ME!


You guys really are the best!!! More poems to come….including the grand prize winnahs!

Top Michael/Gabrielle Poems!

We got a lot of entries about Michael and Gabrielle (aka Charles and Allegra) – I’m so glad you guys find their love story as intriguing as I do! In fact, their story is the crux of the Blue Bloods arc, I think. Why did Gabrielle choose to love a human? Why does Michael ask for her forgiveness? Mmmm…stuff to ponder. You’ll have to read the rest of the series to find out!

This poem reminds me of my own poetry, and I like the last line a lot.

My Unending Love

I loved you, you know
I was devastated when
You chose him
I couldn’t believe you would
Defy our destiny.

I loved you, you know
As I was meant to
You loved me for a time
As well, until
He came along.

I loved you, you know
Until he stole your heart
Away from me
Away from my warm embrace.

I loved you, you know
You destroyed me
When you bore him a child
I was yours and you were mine

I loved you, you know
I told you I didn’t love you

I lied.

-Mary Kate A.

Again, the last line of this poem KILLS me. Love!! Also, it’s really hard to write a poem that rhymes that still has cleverness and tells a story.

From the beginning of time they were meant to be
Sharing a blood bond that was plain to see.
And all this time he’s still wondering why
Why did she leave him without a goodbye?

Angels in heaven answer his cries
Give him a reason why the truth became lies.
And when the steel from his heart begins melting away
Give him a reason to continue to pray.

For he has lost a soul mate; a human played and won
The person she once was is now lost and gone.
The savior of the People, the angel Gabrielle,
Resides inside a coma, trapped in a shell.

They promised each other forever, but she left him all alone
And he became Charles Force, a man whose soul is stone.
Now the steely magnate, the one they fear
But deep inside the crevices, he cries his tears.

So he’s here today, holding her hands in his
Why won’t he resurrect her, why did it come to this?
He knows her life depends on him, her last remaining breath—
It’s almost ironic for he’s the angel of her death.

-Shan S.

As my Aussie/NZ relatives say, NOICE!!!! Very cool people. Next up: Top Funny Poems.


All You Need is Love (Poems)

Dudes and Dudettes,
There are still a bunch of winners to be announced! So if you didn’t make it yesterday or in the semis, you might be one of the finalists! Or one of the grand prize winnahs!!

Today I bring you the top love poems. I’m a sucker for a good love poem, and I really enjoyed reading all of them.

The majority of the entries dealt with the Schuyler/Jack relationship. I liked this one the most because it was simple and it ended really well. This is about Jack.

Green eyes like emeralds;
They burn with insatiable fire.

Only one thought lingers within,
Only one girl,
Only one holds his heart.

An uncontrolled passion;
A passion deeply concealed.

A love that runs deep beneath the glassy surface;
A fear that runs deep beneath the glassy surface.

Only one thought,
Only one person, can give him his Light.

-Lila N.

And this one is from Schuyler’s POV. This poem reminds me of the kind of poetry I used to write. I like the repetition of “I can’t” in the last lines, and I think it ends really well too.

My heart is pumping at the speed of light
My hands are vibrating
My palms are sweating
My brain tells me to scream but my mouth stays closed
I can’t tell what I’m feeling
I can’t say what to do
I can’t think of the answer
Just of you.

-Jessica H.

There were also a ton of poems about Mimi and Jack’s relationship, and this is the one I liked the most, because it showed Mimi’s serious side, and her heartbreak.

I want you to know
I love you with all of my soul
And every life we’ve lived
Every single touch and sweet kiss
Has proven we’re still strong
For centuries still to come.
But now everything’s gone wrong—
I thought I was the only one.

-Kassy P.

We also got tons of poems about Schuyler and Oliver, which were very sweet and had a different flavor from the Jack/Sky poems. It was interesting to me that the poems about the Jack/Sky relationship dealt with him being tortured because he was torn between Sky and Mimi, or Sky being tormented because she couldn’t have him, whereas the ones from Oliver’s point of view were more confident about his love. I’m not going to say if you guys are right about this—you’ll have to read the book to find out! But I did like these poems a lot because they were so sweet.

I love the title and the last lines of this one:

My Sky

Her eyes are so gentle,
Her touch makes me shiver,
Her smile could light a darkened path,
Or melt a frozen river.

She knows me better than anyone,
And for her I would gladly die,
I am her Oliver,
And she is my Sky.

I know how I feel,
I have always loved you,
I know this is wrong,
But I want you to love me too.

She is a vampire,
I am only a guy,
But I could be her sun,
She could be my Sky.

-Natalie K.

This poem reminds me a lot of e.e. cummings, who is one of my favorite poets, hence this poem really spoke to me:

She yelled ‘let’s sink the sun
And dance in the night
All the other stars may shine
But the sun must go’

And he replied with ‘anything for you, dear’
And ran off in search of rope
To catch the sun
Even though he was afraid of the dark.

– Darylove

This one is from Schuyler’s point of view. I thought this was well done, although I wonder if Schuyler’s a bit more ambivalent in her feelings towards Oliver than this poem imagines.

First taste

His neck:
So tender,
So soft;

His smell:
So luscious,
So succulent,

I listen:
His heartbeat
Soars rapidly,

I feel:
Starvation consuming
My heart.

My lips:
Touch skin,

The crimson
Dashes through me
To veins
Of blue.

I push:
Away, from
Hunger, for love.

And there
He sits,
Astounded and dazed:

My love.
My life.
My joy.

-Macy P.

Yay!!! You guys are the best!!! I really love all these poems, more to come tomorrow….


The Winnahs!! First Batch!

As I was judging the poems, trying to figure out the Top 35, I realized I really liked ALL the poems in the Top 55, and that I wanted to honor everyone (and it ended up being a Top 51 since some of the poems were written by the same authors.)

So 25 semi-finalists will receive the chapter sampler AND a lipgloss in “Vixen”! Because you are all vicious vixens!!

Big kisses and congrats to the following:

Diana H., Danny R., Lily C., Byankeegirl28, Cara L., Lauren L., Maddeline V., LehPrincess, AudreyTran, Carolyn L., Nel M., Alysse S., Blair B., Shayla E., Nikki M., xmegggss, Sutton F., Gabrielle C., Tiffany L., Alyson N., Gabrielle S-N., Allison G., Kali O., Hannah W. and Amy S.

Then I ended up with 26 Finalists, 23 of whom will receive the chapter sampler and a lipgloss six-pack “Fiesty Kitten” by Urban Decay! (Mwowwwrrr!)

The top three winners will win, in order: Third Place: $50 Gift Certificate to Sephora.Com, Second Place: $75 Gift Certificate to Sephora.Com, and First Place: $100 Gift Certificate to Sephora.Com. I’m a former beauty editor, and I can’t think of anything more fun than being able to spend money on make-up.

I will be publishing the Top 26 poems every day this week (um, until Thursday, because I’m on vacay on Friday—we’re taking the kid to Disneyland, toodles!)

First off, I really want to thank everyone who submitted a poem. It just blew my mind that there were so many entries (I mean—three hundred!! How fracking cool is that??) And they were all REALLY REALLY good. It was so hard to choose a favorite, even 26! And please know if your poem did not make it into the finals, it does not mean your poem was not good (it was!!!) everything is subjective, and these are the poems that spoke to me the most.

One thing you will notice is a lot of the winners wrote shorter poems, the simpler and more succinct ones had a better chance of winning because it’s just SO MUCH HARDER to make a long poem very good all the way through. Whereas you can really polish a short simple gem of a poem. Also, it’s very hard to write a clever rhyming poem. I also tended to favor poems that had an unexpected POV. A lot of the poems that came in re-told the plot of the books, so the poems that had more of an original viewpoint tended to speak to me more.

Congratulations everyone! You will be receiving instructions in your emails. Thanks for playing and I hope we can do this again soon.

Just a note: I did some minor editing on the poems for clarity purposes.

Today I give you the top poems about Schuyler.
I loved these poems about Schuyler, because I could feel the love the writers had for the character.

I liked the lyricism of this one. It almost reads like a song, it’s so pretty:


Skin of summer stars
Veins of deepest sapphire blood
Heart of the Angels.

-Melissa C.

I loved the last lines of this one. I also liked the imagery and playing with the colors—in my book the colors are very important aren’t they? ☺


Green is a powerful color,
The color of emeralds,
The color of money,

The color of envy.
That potent hue surrounds her,
In the inaccessible eyes of her crush,
Replicated in his egotistical, hostile twin.

Flecks of green, in the eyes of her best friend,
Always there to support and soothe.

Green are the eyes in the distance,
In the perfect reflection of her face: her mother.

Not entirely perfect.

This girl has the eyes of a man she never knew,
Her eyes are blue.

-Gabrielle W.

I thought this poem was a neat description of Schuyler’s internal conflict. Very nice:


I’m falling,
Your name.

The lights,
The fame,
Am I
The same.

Real human,
Blue Blood illusion.

My heart’s been,

It’s splitting,
It’s quitting.
Not that it mattered.

Split in two.
Am I red,
Or am I blue?

-Melissa B.

These next ones are the top haikus. I think it’s so difficult to write a great haiku, and I was really impressed by these.

This first one deals with the thoughts of one of Mimi’s human familiars. I thought it was an original point of view and I liked how simple and resonant it was.

A ceremony,
Ancient and filled with my blood
My last tie to her.

-Katie M.

This one I liked a lot because again, it was simple and succinct, telling a whole story in a few lines. 


Memories combine
Drift into another world
Let this life begin.

-Alyssa B.

Yay! And that’s all for today. Look for more winning poems tomorrow!


Top 55!

Okay, we’re down to the Top 55!

Sorry it’s taking so long – but I really want to read the poems very carefully and consider the merits of each one. I’ll post the Top 35 next week and everyone who entered the contest will receive an email with instructions. Thanks for your patience!! Chapter samplers and prizes should be going out by the end of next week.



The Nose Knows…Scents and Memories

I have narrowed the winners down to the Top 117! I know, I know, but it’s SO HARD to choose. But I think I’ll just keep narrowing down until I get a Top 35.

In other news, I am still sans Birkin. Instead I’ve been workin’.

The Birkin fever has abated somewhat. (I mean who has the time to go to Beverly Hills and grovel for a handbag? Not me, right now, I’ve got deadlines I tell ya, deadlines!)

But I did do some retail therapy at the Neiman Marcus sale. I’m feeling big chunky jewelry lately. Oh man, does this mean I’m entering my Stevie Nicks phase? Some wise gay man said that the older a woman gets the bigger her jewelry becomes. That we’re all destined to be Mrs. Roper with her muu muus and ropes of turquoise. LOL! Anyway, I bought this exQUIsite necklace – three layers of chunky chunky CHUNKY turquoise, quartz and moonstone. GORGEOUS by Stephen Dweck. And on sale ($693 from $1800). And a HUGE takes-up-half—my-ring-finger carved turquoise ring ($336 from $700). Which I wore to dinner at Paperfish last night with my crisp white DVF dress and my white Escada high-heeled sandals (free! they were a gift from the designer – they sponsored my Fashionista Files book tour).

I also bought a Marni dress that looked like a sack on the rack but looked really slouchy and cool once you put it on, like super-rich-hippie chic, a steal at $400 from $1200, and a See by Chloe dress – a printed little shift dress $240 from $700.

Then my friend Minty and I went to Barneys and had a super socialite sighting—all three Miller sisters! Pia Getty, Marie-Chantal of Greece, and Alexandra Von Furstenberg. They were all blonde, tan, and TINY. Alexandra was wearing this really cool almost florescent-orange blouse with a black bow on it (Marni?) and the smallest pair of jeans I have ever seen. She was SO THIN. Pia had on a lavender shift dress, and Marie-Chantal was wearing some kind of white cashmere sweater and a skirt. They were all there with their kids and nannies and shopping all over Barneys. Minty joked that we should be European paparazzi. It was really sweet—they were just a bunch of sisters hanging out with their kids, shopping. They all have really good hair: like buttery buttery blonde with caramel low-lights. M-C’s was the most platinum I think. How do they get their hair to look so “undone” and yet look so perfect? It was very “wild, blonde mane” but also you could tell very expensive.

Anyway, I also bought several new perfumes from Jo Malone, I had run out of my staple Tuberose, which smells like happiness—just so fresh and clean but also quirky enough to keep it interesting instead of just pretty. I get so many compliments whenever I wear this. It simply smells DELICIOUS. But I thought I’d branch out a bit and buy some new scents – so I bought a bottle of the Lotus Blossom & Water Lily and a bottle of the Dark Amber and Ginger Lily. The Lotus Blossom smells like sunshine and the Dark Amber is really sexy and smells like a woman who knows her way around nightclubs and chilled martinis and money.

The other day at Fred Segal I also bought some new perfumes – Rose de The from France, which is what I’m wearing all the time now – it smells like summer in Provence and from Serge Lutens I bought Datura Noir, which smells like St. Barth’s at sunset-kind of loamy and sultry and mysterious and rich, like you just stepped off a hundred-foot yacht.

I’m a bit on a perfume kick right now as you can see.

It’s so funny how you can trace your life in the scents you wear -in junior high there was this French baby perfume we all adored, I can’t remember the name of it-ugh-but I begged and begged my mom for it to buy it for me at Rustan’s in Manila. Then in high school I was an Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche girl, then in college: sophomore year was all about Fendi (the signature scent: very woodsy), then junior year was all about Chanel No. 19 and senior year Chanel Cristalle. Chanel No. 19 and Cristalle always reminds me of being young in New York—lots of good memories.

I can even remember the scents my friends used to wear: Fendi reminds me of Molly, a fabulous sophisticate who introduced me to nights at Au Bar, dancing in velvet cocktail dresses with piles of fake pearls, and her now-gay ex-boyfriend Constantine, the two of them had this jet-set lifestyle of standing table at nightclubs and their own apartments in Manhattan—they were very the movie “Metropolitan” – the UHBs – Urban Haute Bourgeoisie (all that at nineteen! And I wore Fendi because Molly did and I wanted to be just like her.) My BFF Jennie used to wear Issey Miyake (the signature one) and Carolina Herrera after college. Mmmm. Those girls smelled good.

When I first started dating Mike I used to wear Barneys Route du The, which is still his favorite perfume of mine. (Very light and girly and pretty.) So that perfume always reminds me of us when we first met.

I don’t like cologne on guys too much, I really think it has to smell subtle and almost like nothing at all—just a hint of clean-smelling manliness. My dad used to wear Paco Rabbanne and I still think that smells great-like security and home. I heard about this fabulous Creed cologne that I must get for Mike. He used to wear this Emporio Armani cologne we got from a swag bag, which smelled fabulous, but it’s gone now. 🙂

Now the smell I love most is the baby after her bath. She smells so good you could just eat her right up. Maybe it’s the California Baby lavender scent, but I think it’s because she smells like love.