Friday, September 29, 2006

on computers and books and more

Hello there...

I'm Aimee Friedman, author of A Novel Idea, the romantic comedy about a book group, high school, crushes gone awry, hipster fashions, a mysterious writer, and several near-miss kisses.

As an aside, isn't the cover adorable? I love Amy Saidens's art.

When the fabulous Jennifer Echols -- founder and pioneer of this brand-new blog -- asked me when I could post, I told her I'd do so this weekend. I had an image of myself curled up on my bed with my laptop on my knees, a mug of cocoa in one hand, the sound of click-clacking keys filling the room while afternoon light slanted through the window.

But that isn't going to happen. Because, this morning, my laptop died.

I wouldn't say it died a full-on death (it's like that great line from The Princess Bride: "He's mostly dead.") because it kept sputtering, and flashing its lights feebly, and trying to communicate with me. I found myself talking to it, encouraging it, patting its smooth silver exterior, pushing buttons hopefully. Nothing. I know certain writers who name their laptops -- I've never done that, but in that, I felt I was hovering over a dear and ailing friend. My dear Dell -- we'd been through so much together. Four novels, several short stories, countless revisions, plane rides to Paris, train rides upstate, tears and gladness, anxiety and elation, hopeful emails, MySpace name it. In some ways, my laptop knows me better than almost anyone. Is there something scary about that realization? Is this some sort of comment on our era? Who knows?

But there is something nice, something comforting, about writing longhand. Presuming my dear Dell did pass on to the Microsoft Windows in the sky, I will have to resort to writing longhand until I purchase a replacement. I wonder if I even know how anymore. When I was younger, I used to fill spiral-bound notebooks. Now, I can't quite work without that click-clack noise.

So, I wish you all a weekend of cocoa and late afternoon light and healthy, happy laptops, and maybe, just maybe, some time spent writing in a notebook again, like the old days.


Thursday, September 28, 2006

Greetings from Florida!

Hello to any and all Ro-Com readers. Greetings from Florida, my name is Jamie and I am the author of Animal Attraction. Before I go any further, I want to thank Jenn so much for setting up this blog. It's going to be really fun getting together this way. I love talking about writing and I had so much fun writing this book. (I'm just starting a new one, keep your fingers crossed and I'll let you know if it starts to develop into something fun.)

Unlike the other writers here I don't have a fancy web page or even a My Space account. I'd like to say that it's because I'm arty and mysterious, but that's not why. The truth is, my computer skills are about as good as my dating skills were in high school. (If you've read the book you know what that means.)

For starters, we're all just kind of introducing ourselves. I have spent most of my life in Florida (except for the first two years in Italy and the college years in California.) I grew up in a small beach town just like the main character in Animal Attraction. I love writing books, but my day job is writing and producing television shows. If you have any younger brothers or sisters, they may be familiar with the kids shows I've written like Jojo's Circus and Clifford's Puppy Days. Your parents might have seen some of the shows I've done for the History Channel. And, depending on your age and your memory, some of you may have watched the series I used to write like The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo on Nickelodeon and Mickey Mouse Club on Disney Channel.

They were all fun to work on, but I don't know if any was as much fun as writing Animal Attraction. I would love to hear from any of you that may have read it. Any and all feedback is greatly appreciated. I'll make sure to check and post regularly.

Thanks again

Welcome to our blog!

Happy birthday blog! Today, you turn 2 days old. Awwww.

And welcome readers! It's good to see you here in this nifty online space. I am thrilled to be a part of this blog, and promise to try really, really hard to post something from time to time. But the great thing about this blog is that all my favorite writers--the fabulous Simon Pulse Romantic Comedy authors--will be posting as well! That's so much pressure swiped away, just like that. Thanks cool writers, and I look forward to your posts and stories.

To introduce myself, I am Erin, the author of Dancing Queen and Prom Crashers (which will be in stores in February 2007...can't wait!). If you have more questions or curiosity about who I am, you're welcome to visit my website at to read more. There are some pictures and a bio and not a whole lot more than that.

So until next time I come to play in this space, please enjoy the posts of these other authors -- and I'll see you again soon.


Is there any romance in blogging?

Apparently there is--right here in fact. So glad to be able to talk to everyone. Can't wait to hear what you all think about Ripped at the Seams, She's Got the Beat, or any other books I've written. I'd soooo love to hear about anything you've got to say actually. Thanks Jenn for setting up the blog I'm so happy to have such a fun way to procrastinate while I should be working on books! :)

Hey if any of you are going to be in NYC on October 15, come on down to the Great Read in Bryant Park. I'll be at the Target concert stage, and signing there as well. I don't have the schedule yet, but will let you know. Would love to meet ya!


New Interview about getting to GETTING TO THIRD DATE

Some Chatty Stuff About Me

I've been fortunate to participate in a few interviews here and there.

Today, Little Willow has one at her site

Last month, Veronika at Veronika Asks also interviewed me on her fabulous site

I neglected to put the link out there (bad me...I tend to be shy about publicizing good things about me, but I just realized, this is really posting good things about these booklovers, Little Willow and Veronika!).

I'm going to link to these interviews on my website in the (relatively) near future, but my webmaster has been studying for a physics test all week, has a calculus exam coming up, and is taking three computer programming classes that require using the computer for schoolwork rather than frivolously updating his mother's website :-)

Don't forget to check out their awesome sites after you read about me.



Wednesday, September 27, 2006


Many thanks to Jenn for the excellent idea of a RoCom blog. Since my own experiences in romance are mostly of the comedic variety, I was drawn to this series since its inception. 30 GUYS was based loosely on a game friends and I would play whenever we were going through a dating dry spell: force yourself to talk to a brand new guy a day. It was harder (for me, at least) than it sounds!

GETTIN' LUCKY, which comes out this April, is about a karmic-obsessed girl who discovers that her boyfriend has been cheating on her with her best friend. Needless to say, she ditches them both, and finds new friends in the form of a weekly just-for-fun poker night (did I mention she lives in Las Vegas?). Of course, just when it seems like things are turning around for Cass, her boyfriend tries to horn in on her game--and all bets are off....

Thanks again to those of you who read 30 GUYS, and I hope you keep an eye out for LUCKY and all of the other fabulous books in these series.


Hi, everyone! I’m Jennifer Echols, author of MAJOR CRUSH, which was released in August. Yes, that’s me in the photo, lost in deep serious thought about my writing. I’m also the blog administrator. I actually came up with the idea for the blog last spring. I figured that after my book came out and I got a big head, I would need some way to stay connected to the masses.

Well, I’m sorry to report that my head hasn't grown one millimeter, because the day my book came out...nothing happened. A marching band didn't come to my house and spell out MAJOR CRUSH on my front lawn, as I lied to my friends. And there wasn't a parade for me through downtown Birmingham like there was for Taylor Hicks. Maybe for my second book. *shrug*

No, I’m still just puttering around my house. Writing. Putting together 1,000,000-piece Lego sets with my little boy. Revising. Getting the phone cord caught in the vacuum cleaner. Editing. Gazing into the refrigerator and feeling shocked that it is empty. Somebody should cook something! I wonder if my mother is busy? ♥

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Look Ma! I can blog...

Hi, and welcome to this great blog (thanks to Jennifer Echols...her books is out in 2007...look for it).

I'm not exactly sure what to say in my first post here, so I'm going to keep it short.

My Simon Pulse romantic comedy is GETTING TO THIRD DATE. It's about secret crushes and being friends, and falling in love--all while learning to navigate the first semester of college life.

I'll have more to say later, I promise. And if you have any questions...just ask!

Shopping list!

Here’s a complete list of the Simon Pulse Romantic Comedies published so far. They’re all still available in bookstores--if you don’t find them on the shelves, ask the store to order them for you. Happy reading! ♥

How Not to Spend Your Senior Year
By Cameron Dokey

Rule #1: If at all possible, don't pretend to be something you're not. Specifically, don't play dead. Trust me on this one. I did it, so I should know.
Jo O'Connor has spent her whole life moving around. When it comes to new schools, there's not a trick in the book about starting over that Jo doesn't know. But life is about to teach her a new trick: how to disappear entirely.

Rule #2: Always expect the Spanish Inquisition, no matter what anyone else does.
They have to move again. Now. This very night. Jo knows better than to argue. Her dad is the key witness in a major case against a big-time bad guy. But Jo just can't resist one last visit to the school where she's been so happy. All she wants is to say good-bye. That can't cause any problems, can it?

Rule #3: Never assume you can predict the future.

Now Jo's one last visit has landed her smack in the middle of a ghost story. Specifically, her own. By the time it's over, she'll have a whole new set of rules about what's real, what's make-believe, and -- most of all -- what's important.

Royally Jacked
By Niki Burnham

Valerie's life is pretty good. While she's not the most popular girl in school, she does have decent grades, great friends, and a potential boyfriend. All a girl could want.

Then her mother announces that (1) she's gay, and (2) she's leaving Valerie's dad for her girlfriend. Not what Valerie envisioned for her future. And just when Valerie is getting over this bombshell, her father tells her he's gotten a new job as protocol chief for the royal family of some obscure European country.

Valerie's world has come unglued. She can either stay in Virginia with her mom and her ├╝ber-organized, veggie-burger-eating girlfriend, or go with her dad, leaving everything she knows for some place she's never heard of. Valerie opts to go, and quickly discovers that it was a mistake -- until she meets the prince, and all bets are off!

Ripped at the Seams
By Nancy Krulik

There's a new fashion designer in town, and "Fashion Don'ts" have never been more in style!

Sami Granger is fresh off the bus from the Midwest when some crazy person in the bus terminal warns her that life in New York City won't be what she always dreamed of. But Sami's determined to make it in an industry that is notoriously hard to break in to. Nothing she ever learned in her small town can prepare her for her first job working for a hot-shot designer: He steals her designs!

Now the only place that will hire Sami is a trashy lingerie store that she's too embarrassed to tell her old-fashioned father about. Will a visit from her father land Sami on the catwalk, or out on the sidewalk?

South Beach Sizzle
By Suzanne Weyn and Diana Gonzalez

Is Enrique trying to win her over -- or just trying to win?

Road trip! Lula Cruz has her last summer before college all mapped out. She's checking out of NYC and checking in to the sizzling hot "SoBe" scene with her best friend, Jeff.

When their day jobs get to be a drag, they spice things up by entering a local band contest. And spicy it is! Turns out that the hottie Lula keeps running into is also her band's toughest competition! Enrique might seem like the perfect guy, but as things heat up Lula has to wonder: Can she trust her biggest rival with her heart?

By Caroline Goode

Dating in high school is like reality TV. It can get pretty surreal.

Between the strict social ladder (geeks' lockers left, jocks' to the right), and silly, pointless rules (no hand-holding, no kissing, no breathing!), high school is the single worst place to find a boyfriend. And Laura Sweeney is no exception. She hasn't had a date since...well, ever.

Desperate times call for desperate measures. So Laura is calling in the big guns. She needs guidance. A proven "get the guy" strategy. Luckily she knows exactly the expert to call. He's a matchmaking mastermind who actually has the bow and arrow to prove it. Let's just call him...Cupid.

Spin Control
By Niki Burnham

Valerie Winslow never thought life in the tiny country of Schwerinborg could be so great.

But then she never thought she would be dating the prince of Schwerinborg either! Georg, a real prince, is also her first real boyfriend.

And then everything falls apart. Georg's decided they need to cool off for a while and her dad's sending her back to Virginia to visit her mom.

Valerie's bummed -- until she decides to go out with her old crush, David Anderson. David may not be a prince, but maybe he'll take her mind off of Georg -- or will he?

She’s Got the Beat
By Nancy Krulik


Miranda was the quiet type...until she moved to Austin. Home of the hippest college rock bands, Austin, Texas, is a scene. And Miranda is dying to break out of her small-town shell. So she decides to do something totally un-Miranda: learn to play the drums.

When crashing the cymbals, the girl's a wild child! Plus there's a perk to her new gig: a cute bass player. Unfortunately Mr. Bass Man isn't exactly looking for love. Can this rocker chick change his tune? Or does finding her own rhythm mean sacrificing true love?

30 Guys in 30 Days
By Micol Ostow

Practice makes not-quite-perfect

Claudia Clarkson just cut the cord from her high school love-you-forever boyfriend. Sure, she misses Drew. But with so many eligibles on her new college campus, why study ancient history?

Problem is, Claudia's lived in la-la-loveland for so long that she's completely forgotten how to meet boys -- and how to flirt.

Then her roommate proposes a solution: Meet one new guy every day for thirty days. Consider it "target practice" for when Mr. Perfect comes along. Claudia's game, but she definetely hasn't got game. In fact, Flirting 101 could be her toughest course to pass...

Animal Attraction
By Jamie Ponti

The Season of (No?) Love

Jane's life is one giant Conspiracy, with the whole world plotting to keep any chance of romance far, far away. Her social history (17 years, 0 boyfriends) is proof positive of that. But this summer, she's determined to crank it up.

Jane's snagged a gig at the local theme park as part of the star attraction -- the Mermaid Show. But then the Conspiracy strikes, and she ends up starstruck in a furry beaver costume all day long. Hard to breathe, let alone flirt....Can Jane figure a way out of the beaver suit and into the arms of her summer love?

A Novel Idea
By Aimee Friedman

Required reading has never been so hot.

Once upon a time there was a Brooklyn hipster named Norah. Unlucky in love, and short on extracurriculars for her college apps, Norah decided to start a book group. She knew the perfect locale -- a local indie bookstore with a crush-worthy cutie manning the soy latte counter.

When the first meeting arrives, Norah gets a page-turning surprise. The attendees may be bookish, but there are also a few hotties! Most noteworthy: sweet, literary James. He's like a modern Jane Austen hero.... Only, how to snag him?

Ever the romantic heroine, Norah devises a secret plan. And if it works, Norah may just find her "Happily Ever After" love story. The End.

Scary Beautiful
By Niki Burnham

Chloe Rand's life is great.

She has a serious boyfriend, she's about to start her junior year of high school, and she has a tight group of girlfriends. But when her boyfriend moves across the country and decides the long-distance-relationship thing just isn't for him, Chloe's devastated. Worse, she soon learns that when you're the prettiest girl in school and totally unattached, everyone starts treating you differently. Girls don't trust you, guys aren't sure what to make of you, and everyone assumes you're either spoiled, dumb, or both.

Chloe realizes that she's been living the last few years in a bubble and decides to do something about it. But when she falls for Billy, a total geek, will it make her situation better...or worse?

Getting to Third Date
By Kelly McClymer

Could a forgotten cutie be Katelyn's newest catch?

Katelyn Spears is a firm believer in the two-date rule. First dates are so awkward; every guy deserves a second chance. But a third? Not unless he's got serious Romeo potential.

Enter Tyler. Tyler thinks Katelyn's rule is too harsh. He dares her to go back through her Little Pink Book and grant a third date to all the two-date duds. Oh, and she should report back to the whole school via her newspaper column.

Standing by her policy (and determined to prove Tyler wrong), Katelyn makes a few phone calls. But will any of her old flames rekindle a romance?

Dancing Queen
By Erin Downing

Who needs Prince Charming if you've got a rock star?

It's official. Olivia is a superfreak. Sure, she may have landed the hottest internship at an ├╝bercool TV music station. And yes, she's chilling with A-listers in London all summer. But when she meets her very first pop star, she gets caught in a revolving glass door and falls smack down on her bum -- all in one quick motion.

Luckily, Rocker Boy thinks Liv's quirks are adorable. He takes her clubbing at the hippest spots! Liv may be clumsy on solid ground, but on the dance floor she sparkles. The summer's just begun and she's already captured the spotlight -- and a celeb's heart, too. Now if only she was sure he's the right guy...

Major Crush
By Jennifer Echols

Marching to the beat of a different drum...

Tired of the beauty-pageant circuit, Virginia Sauter tosses her tiara, pierces her nose, and auditions for the most unlikely of roles -- drum major of the high school marching band.

Virginia wins, but is forced to share the title with Drew, whose family has held the position for generations. Sure, Drew is hot, but because of his superior attitude, he and Virginia are constantly arguing. That is, until they share more than just their half-time salute...

But as the drum major's heated competition turns to sizzling romance, explosive rumors threaten everything -- including the band's success. Love seemed to be a sure hit, but Virginia and Drew may be marching straight into disaster.

By Niki Burnham

When it comes to love, how many chances do you get?

Girl meets prince. Girl loses prince. Girl gets prince back -- right? Well, that's what Valerie is hoping. She's back in Schwerinborg after spending some time with her mother in the good ol' US of A, and hopes that sparks are still flying between her and Georg. At first it looks like things are going great, until a ski trip to the Alps has Val and Georg's romance hitting some moguls. Could Val's love life be heading for a face-plant?

Love Undercover
by Johanna Edwards

True love needs no disguise.

Kaitlyn Nichols craves a little mystery and mayhem in her life. Having a top-secret agent for a father should do the trick, but unfortunately Dad is no 007, and danger is nowhere on the horizon.

But all that changes when Mr. Nichols brings home Blaine, a seventeen-year-old hottie who’s about to enter the Witness Protection Program. Suddenly Kaitlyn’s in the perilous position of protecting the cutest guy she’s ever met!

When Dad enrolls Blaine in her high school, it’s up to Kait to detect the girls who want him... and the guys who want to kill him. Meanwhile, Kait’s about to discover that there’s one thing she can’t protect--her heart...

Prom Crashers
By Erin Downing

Will you go to the proms with me?

It was love at first sight for Emily and Ethan. But then Em lost his number, and with it, lost all hope of finding a real boyfriend before the end of senior year. All she knows about Ethan is his first name, that he has a super-cute smile, and the fact that he’s going to a prom this month. Which high school? That’s anyone’s guess...

Em enlists the help of her three best friends, who quickly score some formalwear and hail a limo. Together, Emily, Charlie, Max, and Sid vow to find Ethan, to find a cure for senioritis, and most importantly, to find true love--one hilarious prom night at a time.

Gettin' Lucky
By Micol Ostow

Looking for love in Las Vegas...

Cass Parker is a big believer in luck, fate, and all things karmic. So she’s devastated when she walks in on her supposed best friend macking with Jesse, the guy she’s in total "like" with. Talk about bad karma. Vegas is just full of cheaters, she concludes, even the locals.

But Cass refuses to sulk. She finds new friends, and even gets invited to join their weekly poker night--totally casual and not-for-profit, of course. They seem pretty chill, and Cass definitely needs to get out more. So after consulting her horoscope, she gets in the game.

But when Jesse turns up for a final showdown, it turns out that Cass isn’t so good at bluffing--not when it comes to matters of the heart...

The Boys Next Door
by Jennifer Echols

Cute, available, and one cabin over.

Lori lives for summertime at her family's lake house. She spends all season wakeboarding, swimming, and hanging with her friends--including the two hotties in the cabin next door. With the Vader brothers, Lori's always been one of the guys.

But while Lori and the "baby" brother, Adam, are inseparable friends, she can't deny a secret crush on Sean, the older Vader boy. This year Sean's been paying Lori a lot of attention, and not in a brotherly way.

But just as Lori decides to prove to Sean she's girlfriend material, she realizes that her role as girl friend to Adam may be even more important. And by trying so hard for the perfect summer romance, she could be going way overboard...

In the Stars
By Stacia Deutsch & Rhody Cohon

Which do you follow: your head or your heart?

When Sylvie loses the diamond from her late mother’s ring, her best friend Cherise insists it’s a sign that love is about to enter Sylvie’s life. Yeah, right. Sylvie doesn’t believe in signs—she only star gazes through her telescope. But she also knows Cherise won’t drop it, so to humor her Sylvie agrees to date the next boy who asks.

Sure enough, a new guy in school appears and Sylvie’s the object of his affection. Maybe Cherise was right after all? But when the sparks don’t fly and Cherise thinks she’s just scared, Sylvie ends up confiding in an old friend. Could finding the perfect guy be as rare as catching a shooting star?

Crush du Jour
By Micol Ostow

When a girl bites off more than she can chew...

Laine barely has enough time for herself, much less for romance. But she's always hungry for more projects--so she decides to start up a cooking class at her local community center. As it turns out, Seth, the guy co-teaching the class with her, is not just cute, but downright delicious!

When Seth offers her a waitress job at his family's restaurant, Hype, Laine can't resist. Just as Seth finally warms up to Laine, Laine finds out that Callie, another waitress at Hype, is cooking up a plan to steal Seth for herself. But tensions really reach their boiling point when Laine's restaurant critic mother writes a scathing review--of Hype! Will Laine have to put love on the back burner again?

The Secret Life of a Teenage Siren
By Wendy Toliver

Geeky to gorgeous in sixty seconds...

Roxy’s about to turn sixteen, but life isn’t so sweet. As a band geek, Roxy can barely get the cute guys to notice her, much less go out with her. Then, on her birthday, Roxy is transformed into a siren: seductively beautiful with the power to control all men. She though sirens were an ancient myth, but suddenly Roxy can get any guy she wants with just a few notes on her flute.

There are only two rules: don’t tell anyone about being a siren, and don’t fall in love. When she starts dating Zach, the guy everybody’s crushing on, Roxy realizes she could get used to this siren thing … but how can she keep herself from falling in love?

Love, Hollywood Style
By P. J. Ruditis

True love doesn't always follow a script …

Tracy Vance’s love life is a total flop. Sure, she has a cool job as a tour guide at a real Hollywood movie studio, but when it comes to her personal life, she can barely get her crush, Connor, to notice her.

Then Tracy gets a brilliant idea: Why not win Connor’s heart with some help from the big screen? Taking her cues from her favorite chick flicks, Tracy puts “Operation Ro Com” into action, and it actuallyseems to work!

But Tracy soon realizes that getting the leading man isn’t the same as keeping him. Maybe things never work out like they do in the movies—or do they?

Something Borrowed
By Catherine Hapka

She’s ready to catch the bouquet, not steal the guy!

When Ava gets dumped by her boyfriend, she’s pretty upset. He wasn’t the love of her life of anything, but with her sister’s wedding—a.k.a. the social event of the season—just two weeks away, Ava’s got to save face by finding someone cute and fun to bring as her date.

With the clock ticking and no dates in sight, Ava asks her best friend if she can “borrow” her boyfriend, Jason, for the night. Ava’s never been a big Jason fan, but he’ll look great in a tux and at least she’ll have someone to dance with. But it doesn’t take long for Ava to realize she’s got him all wrong…

What do you do when Mr. Right is wrapped up in a package that belongs to your best friend?