Posts Tagged ‘love junkie’

First foreign translation rights sold! Prague, here I come!

Friday, January 2nd, 2009

What a beautiful way to start the brand spanking new year. JOTA of the Czech Republic has bought translation rights to publish LOVE JUNKIE! Travel has always been a huge passion of mine, and a steady inspiration to my creativity. So the thrill of having LOVE JUNKIE embraced by another culture, and the chance to have the story translated into another language, is beyond awesome. Plus I’ve never been to Prague, or anywhere else there, but I have always wanted to visit. Any country which installed a literary president for so many years wins my heart. Now I have a great reason to finally experience the land of Vaclav Havel, Milan Kundera, and of course, Franz Kafka. Who are your favorite Czech writers? What are your favorite works of these writers? What about other Czech artists? Prague is also the home of  Jan Svankmajer, the surrealist artist and animator whose brilliant work has inflamed my imagination for years with such masterpieces as “Alice” and “Faust.” Happy New Year to all of you! Thanks so much for your support. Please keep spreading the word about LOVE JUNKIE if you dug it. Write Amazon reviews. Nudge your friends to read, buy books. Forgive me. We authors must bare ourselves in these crass commercial ways today. It’s largely up to readers and authors to help a book stay in print, and available. I’m grateful for your incredible responses and your help, and also to all the insightful, thoughtful and excellent reviewers who’ve read my book and reviewed it. I feel incredibly lucky. Here’s to a fabulous, adventure-filled, creative and prosperous new year with tons of travel whether exotic and faraway, or local, or simply in the ever-on-tap imagination!

Here is a short bit from Svankmajer’s “Alice” for your mind’s pleasure:

Alice…through the desk drawer…

Love Junkie Book Launch Party!

Monday, December 15th, 2008

After a fabulous hometown L.A. launch week, with readings at Barnes & Noble on the 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica, Book Soup in West Hollywood and Village Books in the Pacific Palisades — it was time to celebrate.

Where better than the heart of Chinatown, legendary cinematic metaphor for the city’s secret dark and twisted self.

Better yet, the party erupted at KGB Studio, where garish blue and red curtains cut the space into strange arterial corridors, bisected by disturbing paintings titled only “Dementia.” One of the scintillant guests, Tiffany Naiman, fresh from a stint at Oxford, pierced the demented veil, telling us that the artist doubled as her kitty litter salesperson. Only in L.A. Only in Silver Lake. The party plot thickened.

As authoress of LOVE JUNKIE, I was exiled to a corner, bound by scary clown portraits on all sides. As I sat in my red silk sheath dress, a lurid blue sky background serving as kitsch backdrop — a snaking line of lovely and supportive and generous friends wound around the bowels of KGB bearing books in hand for me to inscribe. As I inked, a looping brand new VidLit of “Blind Date,” an excerpt from Chapter 4, played on a laptop. This was a sneak preview peek of the fantabulous VidLit which has yet to be released!

Skylight Books manned the book sales table. Flaunt Magazine, helmed by Andrew Pogany, sponsored the party, offering free copies of their current mag issue, which sports a review of LJ. Valley Diva Sandra Tsing Loh and her mysterious manservant Frier McCollister slung delicious and lethal drinks concocted with Sandra’s persona vodka sponsor, Modern Spirits, especially for the party. The list included:  TK (Must check with Frier for exact names, ingredients…) So the line was jolly and well-lubricated — for those who could drink spirits. Helping sling cocktails:  Lou Mathews, my writing mentor, car mechanic and master chef. Camp Phyxion proffered the musical dimension, playing old skool love addiction tunes on a monster boom box. They kept the aura of L.A literary love aurally ashimmer.

We spotted luminous artistic spirits & glitterati guests amidst the red-blue curtains such as:  Janet Fitch, Mark Danielewski, Samantha Dunn & Jimmy Camp, Dr. Suzy Block, Chloe Webb, Ann Magnuson, Meri Nana-Ama Danquah, Bruce Bauman, Emma Forrest, Lori Precious, Hope Edelman, Seth Greenland & Susan Kaiser Greenland, Stan Kent, Alan Wieder, Gary Phillips, Blair Tindall, Pam Ward, Malina Saval, Jim Stein, Bloomsbury heavyweights Peter Miller and Sara Mercurio. The place was packed, and pulsing at the outerlimits of L.A. with many people having bravely crossed the La Cienega/Rubicon demarcation line between West and East side of the city. Straight into Love Junkie territory.

The committee who made this party happen:  spearheading the whole shebang:  the Belle and Beau of the bookish ball:  Linda Renaud, Daryl Reynolds. Other crucial members:  Paulette Bartlett, Anthea Raymond, Lisa Firestone — who generously supplied cases of wine from Firestone Vineyards — Marilee Albert, Jamie Rose, Chris Solimine, Kristin Herbert, Alexandra Booke, Dale de la Torre, Laurie Traktman. Several of these people sashayed through the crowds, serving steamy Chinese fingerfoods from Empress Pavilion. Cookies were cracked, and fortunes consumed. At KGB, even in the afternoon, inside all was pure night.

After three and a half hours of constant signing — my hypergraphia takes hold when I sign books, beware! — with a numb arse and a now wrinkly red silk sheath dress, I drifted to a back area to read to the remaining diehard crowd. There, the last Love Junkie partygoers lounged, and listened, sprawled on a circular black bedlike thing, while I stood in front of a painting of a woman with red outstretched legs and a stitched-up corseted cooch and read. I read, while Jesse Rhines kindly shined a flashlight on the pages. I chose to read a piece set in nearby Chinatown, one of the most perverse and painful sections of the book, and one I had never read in public before. It only seemed fitting to share something that intimate with the friends who’d made the long trek and been so beautifully supportive. As I read, without knowing it I kept knocking the painting behind me, so there was an odd and oddly synchronous and serendipitous moving backdrop to the electro-lit words.

At this point, words fail. Now I am going to shift into visual mode, and share a series of pics I shot during the party. While I was exiled, and unable to join the festivities — I did insist on taking portraits of most of the party guests who came to see me in Clown Country. Here are the photos. I hope they give you a little taste of the surreal only-in-L.A. launch of LOVE JUNKIE. Consider them an homage to all of you who came, and all of you who have supported LOVE JUNKIE. It’s hard out there for a book. If you dug the book, please spread the word…

Rachel

xoxo

Mark Danielewski and Janet Fitch getting jiggy at the private reading

Mark Danielewski and Janet Fitch getting jiggy at the private reading

Sandra Tsing Loh tending bar in demure moms-afire costume

Sandra Tsing Loh tending bar in demure moms-afire costume

Frier McCollister, Sandra's sidekick, manservant and cocktail creator extraordinaire

Frier McCollister, Sandra’s sidekick, manservant and cocktail creator extraordinaire

Liz Dubelman, mastermind and dark mistress of VidLits, and editor of What Was I Thinking? 58 Bad Boyfriend Stories coming soon!

Liz Dubelman, lovely mastermind and techno-mistress of VidLits, and editor of What Was I Thinking? 58 Bad Boyfriend Stories — coming soon! Includes “Blind Date” excerpt from Love Junkie also a VidLit!

Cosmic supadivas Chloe Webb & Ann Magnuson make the scene

Cosmic supadivas Chloe Webb & Ann Magnuson make the love junkified scene

Meri Nana-Ama Danquah channeling regal

Meri Nana-Ama Danquah channeling regal

Michael Shaner, warrior writer, and yours truly

Michael Shaner, warrior writer, and yours truly

Emma Forrest lovely in polka dots

Emma Forrest lovely in polka dots

Rocket scientist/erotica writer Stan Kent, his lovely better half Cyn, and coolgrrl blogger Kastle Waserman

Rocket scientist/erotica writer Stan Kent, his lovely better half Cyn, and coolgrrl blogger Kastle Waserman

Dr. Suzy Block, fellow Yalie:  "Lust et Veritas!" and "Boo-Lah-Lah!"

Dr. Suzy Block, fellow Yalie:  “Lust et Veritas!” and “Boo-Lah-Lah!”

Hope Edelman and Bruce Bauman

Hope Edelman and Bruce Bauman join the fiesta

Wendy Merrill is NOT Falling Into Manholes at this party

Wendy Merrill is NOT Falling Into Manholes at this party

Lou Mathews, rico suave in an apron

Lou Mathews, rico suave in an apron

Lisa Firestone, scribbler, surfergirl and super-philanthropist

Lisa Firestone, scribbler, surfergirl and super-philanthropist

Linda Renaud and Daryl Reynolds, the dynamic duo behind the party machine

Linda Renaud and Daryl Reynolds, the dynamic duo behind this whole party machine!

Gary Phillips, don't mess with my social activist/noir writing badass self!

Gary Phillips, don’t mess with my social activist/noir writing badass self!

Mike Welch, foreground, Sam Dunn and Jamie Rose, fierce and gorgeous redheads, lurking...

Mike Welch, foreground, Sam Dunn and Jamie Rose, fierce and gorgeous redheads, lurking…

Sam Dunn eight months pregnant! All the way down from Sacramento

Sam Dunn eight months pregnant! All the way down from Sacramento. Her son’s first literary event!

Bloomsbury duo, Peter Miller all the way from NYC, and Sara Mercurio, also radiant and pregnant!

Bloomsbury duo, Peter Miller all the way from NYC, and Sara Mercurio, also radiant and pregnant!

Alan Wieder wonders, how am I going to explain the title of my forthcoming book, Year of the Cock, to my adorable son?

Alan Wieder wonders, how am I going to explain the title of my forthcoming book, Year of the Cock, to my adorable son? Perhaps the saucy mermaid in the painting has the answer.

Let's get down to the private reading! Jesse Rhines, Susan Bernard, Marilee Albert and others...

Let’s get down to the private reading! Jesse Rhines, Susan Bernard, Marilee Albert, Dawn Kim and others…

Marilee Albert and Laurie Traktman showing sisterly solidarity

Marilee Albert and Laurie Traktman showing sisterly solidarity

Femme Quartet of Trouble:  Tiffany Naiman, moi, Bett Williams and supergalpal Margaret Wrinkle who flew all the way in from Santa Fe to help celebrate...I am supremely blessed in friends...RRxoxo

Femme Quartet of Trouble:  Tiffany Naiman, moi, Bett Williams and supergalpal Margaret Wrinkle who flew all the way in from Santa Fe to help celebrate…I am supremely blessed in friends…RRxoxo

First Rachelville post on my mother’s birthday

Sunday, November 30th, 2008
  • Me and Ma, 1965, Manhattan photobooth
  • Happy birthday, Ma!

    I’ve been meaning to begin this blog for ages.

    My mother’s birthday is the perfect time. If you guys have read the book, you’ll know that my mother was the original love junkie. She’s been gone three decades now, and I miss her. As I said in an essay once, sometimes it feels like she died long ago, and sometimes it feels like today.

    Above is a series of pics from a Manhattan photobooth, circa 1965, of me and my mother.

    Tomorrow, December 1st, is the official publication date for my new book, Love Junkie:  A Memoir. I like to think that my mother would be proud. She was wildly talented, but never finished anything.

    Since today is her birthday, I want to conjure a memory that would celebrate her, because as troubled as she was, she was equally full of life, and joy, compassion for people, animals, creative talent, adventure, and a wacked-out sense of humor.

    One of my favorite memories features my beloved brother, Michael.

    We are in Cape Cod, at my mother’s family’s summer house. Michael is a young kid, around two, and a bratty cousin of ours has just walloped him in the knee with a plastic rake. Michael’s knee is a little torn up and he runs into the kitchen sobbing and screaming to find my mother. I am there, stuffing my ten-year-old face with fresh Angelo’s donuts. It is early morning. The framed picture of the fox hunt hangs crookedly on the wall, a shaft of sunlight illuminating a crazed-looking fox. In the other room, I can hear the tinkle of my grandfather’s martini glass. My mother hoists Michael into her lap, gives him a kiss and carefully examines the cut. “This will cure it!” she says. Then she pours the remains of her Michelob beer onto my brother’s knee.

    My brother and I still laugh about this incident. Happy birthday, Ma! Even in madness, you kept your sense of humor.

    RR

    xoxo