On… three things

I went to LA last week and sold another show to a studio!  The deal is being worked out right now, so I can’t go into too many details. But I can’t wait to get started. I also sold a show to a cable network recently – something set in the 80s – and just got the all-clear to move from outline to script stage.

The outline process is INTENSE and sometimes slow. But oh, so useful. I love outlining. (I wrote my first novel on a whim, with no outline, no plot, no plan, in fact nothing in my mind aside from a general desire to make my reader laugh and feel happy and understood. Sometimes I look back and think, my God woman, you were lucky to get an agent and a book deal off that thing.) I think of outlines as the blueprint for the house I’m designing and building: I have to make sure the people paying for the house are happy with the blueprint, right? So they can’t say at the end “uh, since when was there a fucking gazebo on the roof deck?”

No one wants a fucking gazebo on the roof deck.

With these two projects, and two others in the pipeline, I’m a busy little cougar these days. But I keep thinking: “man, I want to write a funny / beauty / fashion / something post for the blog.” And then I don’t because… by the time I’ve finished writing and thinking about worlds and plots and characters all day, and dealt with two very small redheaded boys, I’m wrung out like an old dishcloth. It’s all I can do to watch Younger, read about the most recent evils and idiocies of the administration, say hello to Instagram, and pass out.

So, forgive that it’s short, but here’s a round-up of things I fucking LOVE right now:

app005prod& Other Stories: Maquis de Nuit

I popped in on Saturday, swiped this across my face, immediately decided that I looked like I was in St Tropez in the 1920s, only without having to deal with the tediousness of Hemingway being such a little bitch to everyone. The salesgirl told me that they only put them out that morning for the first time, and “There are only like three left! They are walking out of here!” It looks dark blue-red in that photo, but it’s more of a dark burnt brick-red. Delicious.


Etude House Moistfull Collagen Cream

I have pretty good skin. I have bad hair – very, very bad hair. But good skin. And if people ask me what I do, I am totally honest: I don’t get facials or laser treatments or anything like that (BORING and seriously who has the time?), I cleanse with cheapie-cheap Cetaphil, I wear SPF 50 or higher every day, I don’t drink wine (vodka yes, Campari yes, even beer yes – but wine, almost never, unless I’m eating a GREAT steak somewhere like Raoul’s and the steak personally asks me to drink a glass of red as its last request, you know what steaks are like). And I moisturize more than anyone else on the fucking planet. I have gone on about my love of moisturizers before, and recommended quite a few, but then I read about this as a viable alternative to the infamous-always-sold-out-expensive-AF-$130 Tatcha moisturizer, and figured, why not, it’s only $17. I’m now on my second pot. (For me to repurchase something, rather than think, eh, I’ll try something new, means it’s really good.) I throw this moisturizer on in the morning as a mask when I wake up, then remove with a warm wet face cloth an hour later when it’s time for CE Ferulic Acid (yes, I’m a convert, I wish I wasn’t, it’s so goddamn expensive, but a little goes a long way) and SPF. During the day, if I’m not going out, I just throw on a glob or two early afternoon for fun. At night, I apply it over my SKII. It’s sort of gel-like, it doesn’t have any smell, and it just makes your skin all plump and happy. Trust moi.

.41fcFbloaULMaybelline Lasting Drama Waterproof Eye Pencil in Silken Turquoise

The secret to wearing wild eye pencil colors is to throw them on like you don’t give a shit*. The messier the better. Line your waterline, smush it under your bottom lashes, scribble over your eyelid. Use your pinkie to smear it around. You can’t fuck it up, because fucked up is THE POINT. The LAST thing that you want to look like is one of those sweet, sad teens on the internet taking selfies with ‘baked’ foundation and eyes made up to look like peacock feathers, or whatthefuckever. The aim should be to look real, and like you’re having fun. This pencil, plus mascara, plus bronzer (this one, always, forever, amen) is my favorite summer look right now. It’s sort of Brooke Shields in 83, and we all need more of that.

*This is probably the secret to everything in life: don’t give a shit what anyone thinks of you, just work as hard as you can and be kind and happy. And wear turqoise eyeliner



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On… Scotty Doesn’t Know

One of my best friends from college reminded me of this song last night, from the movie Eurotrip. It’s a weird little cameo from Matt Damon, and he NAILS IT.


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On… some new books to read

I’ve been writing a lot, which means I’ve been reading a lot to calm my brain down. And I can only calm the damn thing down by reading non-fiction. I don’t know why. It’s veh annoying. But it’s true.

Here’s what I’m reading. (BTW I never recommend the books I think are kak. Only the good ones. But I don’t name and shame the kak books, either, because, eh, it’s just my opinion, and I don’t want to hurt an author’s feelings. We are very tender types, you know.)


The Chief: The Life Of William Randolph Hurst by David Nasaw

This book is thoroughly enjoyable account of a total eccentric. I started reading it because I was reading a biography of Rockefeller, and it was honestly one of the most boring books I’d ever read, not because the writing was bad – it was fine – but because Rockefeller was DULL as FUCK. Holy shit, the man was a robot. So I mentioned that to one of my American girlfriends and she said ‘oh, yah, try Hearst, he was fun’.


The Final Days by Woodward and Bernstein

I have this thing for presidencies on the verge of collapse, for obvious reasons.


Ghostbuster’s Daughter by Violet Ramis Stiel

An absolutely delightful book about Harold Ramis, written with love, honesty and humor, by his eldest daughter Violet. He sounds like he was everything you would ever want him to be, and more. Such a lovely read.


An Odyssey: A Father, A Son And An Epic by Daniel Mendelssohn

This is book is gentle and thoughtful – not a page-turned, exactly, but every time I picked it up I was happy I was reading it. Part exploration of The Odyssey, part memoir of the author’s father, and partly a rumination on time and love and death. Just lovely.


City of Nets: A Portrait of Hollywood in the 1940′s by Otto Friedrich

A chaotic, deliciously satisfying cavort through the 1940s in Hollywood. LOVED this book.


Indecent Exposure by David McClintick

Terrible title, great book.


Final Cut by Steven Bach

One of those ‘when it goes wrong, it goes WRONG’ Hollywood books.


Name Above The Title, an Autobiography by Frank Capra

For more Hollywood books, go here and here and here (I have this thing for books about Hollywood.)

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On… Queer Eye, Season Two

Watch and cry, my loves. Watch and cry.


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On… The Happytime Murders

Every time I watch this, I scream with laughter. Actually. Literally scream.

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On… some new music

Well, not new. New old music. Old music, mostly, that you probably haven’t listened to in a while, maybe ever, but you’ll totally love. Music! What I’m saying is, here’s some music for you. Handpicked by moi.

The Flaming Lips. Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots.

This is a weird, beautiful, quirky little song, unlike any other song.


Saint Motel. My Type.

I’m not sure if I love this, or really hate it. But I keep listening to it.


Blondie. Long Time.

Love Blondie. LOVE.


Cake. Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town.

I like to sing this very loudly to myself. It’s VERY dramatic. Stick to the very end to hear the ad-libs.


Dave Dobbyn. Slice Of Heaven.

This song was a SMASH HIT in New Zealand and Australia, and my cousins in Perth had it on cassette tape. We played it a lot when we visited them from HK for Christmas. Then we would sing it, acapella. Then we’d make up Nativity plays. My sister was Mary. I was the Donkey, but I like to think of myself as the writer/director BEHIND the Donkey.


Jon Spencer Blues Explosion. Bellbottoms.

Obviouslah I’m a Baby Driver fan, I’ve got a working brain. But what made me fall in love with this song was an interview with Edgar Wright, when he said he used to listen to it in his car, like Baby does in the movie, and daydream and write in his head. And the movie grew out of this solitary daydreaming. This is exactly the kind of thing I do, and totally the way I think of ideas and write. I think and think and think until eventually, my head will explode if I don’t write it all out.

The clip is the movie clip, rather than the video, because, well, it’s better.

And if you’d like to see the clip while you read the script – and why wouldn’t you? – then take a look at this amazing Instagram account.


Lemon Jelly. Nice Weather For Ducks.

Another weird song. But kind of great.


Gizzle. Get Loud For Me.

I have a feeling I posted this song before, but tant pis, as they say. It’s one of my favorites right now.


There’s no video to this song. But just trust me. It’s Turin Brakes, Feeling Oblivion, and if you’re in just the right mood, it will make you burst into tears. But the kind of tears that make you feel better about everything. I promise.

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On… the Anniversary photo, 2018 edition

We’ve been married eight years. EIGHT YEARS, PEOPLE. And we have the photo evidence to prove it.



Errol is six, Neddy is four.

I wish, in retrospect, that I wasn’t wearing a deeply crumpled old jacket, that I’d tried harder to get the boys to wear the FRANKLY ADORABLE little blazers that I bought for them for special occasions, and that we’d gotten our shit together and made it to City Hall before the sun was directly overhead. Oh well. Live and learn. You can also see that Fox has grown a lovely red beard, that Errol is extremely shy of the camera, and that I am clutching Ned’s hand rather than holding it, because he was hopping around like a bunny on the 7-ft-high podium and one of these years, he’s going to fall off.


Here we have 2017. Errol is five and Ned is three.


Here is 2016. Errol is four, Ned is two and REALLY into it.


Here is 2015. Ned is one, Errol is three. That dress is from Topshop. Where the hell did I put that dress.


Here is 2014. Errol is two and Ned is three months.


Here is 2013. Errol is one and a half.


Here is 2012. Errol is about eight months old.

anniversary 2010

Here is 2010, our wedding day.

As I said this time last year, we got married here in NYC, even though we were living in London at the time, because why not. And 2011 is missing as we were living in Zurich for the year for Fox’s job, and I was three months pregnant, so it would have been a photo of me puking and snarling at Fox.


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On… Crazy Rich Asians movie!

I LOVE this book series. (I have raved about it before.)

Cannot wait to see the movie.

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