Lonely Hearts Club fun and an outtake!

Hello all! Between all the awesome notes I've been getting from the Brazilian and Spanish release of LHC and the fact that I've been listening to the Beatles a lot lately (preparing to see Sir Paul McCartney next Friday, which happens to be my BIRTHDAY!), I thought it was time for me to post another LHC outtake!

In trying to find the outtake I was looking for (there are SO many drafts of that book), I stumbled on some things that I thought LHC readers would find fun:

The original first line was from the song "Eleanor Rigby." The book was going to open up with just: "Aah, look at all the lonely people..." But that seemed a little depressing.

THEN the first line was, "A wise poet once said, 'Boys are stupid. Throw rocks at them.'" I still like this line, but think Penny's declaration of not dating boys works the best.

I'm pretty sure I've mentioned this more than once, but Ryan's last name comes from Jack Bauer. (And I recently got to tell that to Kiefer Sutherland!!!! - read about that here). But a lot of the other names of characters came from friends and family. All three of my siblings are in the book: Eileen, Meg, and WJ. Plus there is an infamous paragraph on page 65 which has only names of friends. And the characters of Amy, Jen, Erin, and Laura are all named after close friends. So be warned, if you're a friend of mine, I will most likely use your name at some point!

Just some fun facts for you... Now on to the outtake!

As some of you may know, there were many, many, oh so MANY drafts of LHC. So I have a lot of scenes that got cut during the many, many, oh so MANY years of working on the book (read the first outtake I posted here). One of my favorite scenes involves a funny (if I do say so myself) interaction between Tracy and Diane. Originally, Tracy was obsessed with a fictional actor I named Jack Jackson, and he was number one on Tracy's annual boyfriend list. But in the end, I decided to cut the celebrity infatuation because I felt it was more important for her to have a crush on someone she would've had a chance with. Not that us mere mortals don't have a shot at celebrities... :)

Please note, LHC was originally written in present tense (which is why the below isn't consistent with the final book), and it hasn't been edited or copyedit.

Enjoy! XO, Elizabeth

“What I’m about to show you is going to change your life,” Tracy says to Diane.
Diane’s eyes grow wide and she leans forward in her chair.

I roll my eyes and grab a magazine off of Diane’s bedroom floor and do my best not to laugh.

“Okay Diane, the most important thing about Netstalking a celebrity is that you have to try to find a couple of good sources that may or may not show up the first time you do a search. For example,” Tracy starts vigorously typing away on the keyboard, “when I first discovered Jack, I went online and there were all these fansites run by these deranged teenage fans.”

I roll over on Diane’s bed so I’m not facing her computer. How exactly does Tracy classify herself if not as a deranged teenage fan? She bought a $300 bracelet to match Jack’s!

“And all these fansites had were the same pictures and facts about Jack everybody knows. But then one day I discovered this girl in London who lived near the set of Jack’s new movie The General and she had these daily blogs and Jack sightings. It was simply amazing.”

I can’t help myself, I turn back just so I can witness this, it’s like a car crash. Tracy looks so intense and Diane, well she really seems to be into this. She is even taking notes.

“So that started the Where in the World is Jack Jackson website, and now people all over the world contribute.”

Diane nods, “So how do you know if people are telling the truth?”

“Good question,” Tracy remarks in serious tone. “Well, that can be a bit tricky. Obviously there are some girls who think that they are dating Jack and will post about them going on vacation, but we all know where he’s filming because that information is easy to find.”

A sound escapes my throat. I just can’t take how serious this is all sounding.

Tracy turns around, “What are you laughing at? I believe the only reason you have a high-speed internet connection at home is so your parents can Netstalk the Beatles.”

“Yes, and since when is being like my parents considered a sane thing?” I respond.

Tracy goes back to the keyboard. “See the benefit to you liking Johnny Patton is that he should have an official website, most rock stars do. A-ha, there it is.” Tracy clicks on a link and soon Diane’s computer is filled with photos of singer Johnny Patton and his latest single is filling the room.

“Oh, I’ve never been on his website before!” Diane exclaims as she starts going through the blogs and photos posted.

“What? Never! You’ve never even….” Tracy can’t seem to comprehend that anybody would not try to find a website of someone they like.

“Well, have you seen him in concert at least?”

Diane shakes her head, “No.”

Tracy looks at Diane incredulously. “Well, you absolutely have to see him in concert. Penny will always go to a concert, she’s even seeing that Tyson guy’s band this Friday. And, of course, I’m always supportive of my friends so you know I will go with you.”

Yeah, supportive of delusional fantasies.

Tracy puts her arm around Diane. “Oh Diane, there is so much I have to teach you.”