Guest posts

Guest Post: The Apple of Amy Spalding's eye in INK IS THICKER THAN WATER

Hello everybody! Tomorrow is the release day of a fab new book by Amy Spalding, INK IS THICKER THAN WATER. I was lucky enough to get to read the book early and as Beyonce once sang, "If you liked it than you shoulda put a blurb on it." (That is how the song goes, right?)

Ink - Final Cover

There's so much I loved about INK IS THICKER THAN WATER: the characters, the humor, the cute boys (obvi), and THE APPLE.  While reading Amy's fab book, I actually got up and went to my computer to Google this movie that she puts in the book because I thought it was fictional. But it was not. And now I'm obsessed with it, but refuse to actually watch it until I can do so with Amy. So while I look-up flights to LA, Amy is going to introduce you to possibly the best worst movie ever. 

Take it away, Amy!

Thanks so much to Elizabeth for having me on her blog! Elizabeth and I met at the L.A. Times Festival of Books earlier this year, where we quickly determined we were basically the same person, particularly our passionate feelings about karaoke.

But I digress!

I included lots of things I love in Ink Is Thicker than Water, like restaurants I love in my hometown of St. Louis, mid-1960s music (especially The Hollies' "Bus Stop"), and tattoos, but none of these can really compete with The Apple.

The Apple is a movie musical from 1980, but that makes it sound straightforward and normal, and, seriously? Nothing about The Apple is normal or straightforward.

I'm a huge fan of musicals and of bad movies (if you haven't seen Nic Cage's The Wicker Man, you're only hurting yourself) and yet I'd never even heard of The Apple, until several years ago. A roommate arrived back from a showing at The New Beverly theater, all but unable to describe what she'd seen. She best described it as "a disco rock musical about the dangers of disco rock set in the futuristic world of...1994". She bought the DVD and forced the entire household to watch it.

And I'm so, so glad I did.

The Apple is the story of Alphie and Bibi, two "naive" ("naive" always means "stupid" in summaries, doesn't it?) kids from Moose Jaw, Canada, who just want to be successful singers. When they cause competition for the evil music executive-slash-metaphorical-or-literal devil Mr. Boogalow, he recruits them into his "dark" "underworld", and eventually Boogalow takes over his government mandated music breaks. Thank god for a clever group of hippies and their leader, who arrives with one of my favorite deus ex machinas ever. EVER.


Take a look at the trailer.

Well, this sounds bad, right? Maybe REALLY BAD? But the thing about The Apple isn't just that it's bad. It's so magnificently, mind-blowingly awful that it circles back around to being awesome. Every moment is either entertaining or hilariously confusing, and I must admit that I...I kind of love it.

Nathan Rabin over at the AV Club said, "The peculiar genius of The Apple is that every time it appears that the film cannot get any crazier, it ratchets up the weirdness to almost indescribable levels."

Take the title song, which features perhaps my favorite set of of lyrics in music history: "It's a natural, natural desire/Meet an actual, actual vampire."

Here's a song which is a great example of how heavy-handed metaphors can seem. PS This little ditty about speed gets stuck in my head on a fairly regular basis.

Seriously, despite how I'm compiling these clips to show you guys what an insanely terrible movie The Apple is, all I'm filled with is...a compelling desire to watch it again, and soon. Elizabeth, when are you coming over??

I'm on my way, Amy! 

Thanks so much to Amy for stopping by and please be sure to pick-up INK IS THICKER THAN WATER, you won't be disappointed. And visit Amy  online at or on Twitter @theames - she gives good tweets!

Hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving! XOXO, Elizabeth

Guest post: Abby McDonald's #GettingOver Playlist plus GIVEAWAY!

Hello all! In honor of the paperback release of Getting Over Garrett Delaney, the fabulous Abby McDonald has shared her #GettingOver playlist. As someone who counts K. Clark's "Since U Been Gone" as her go-to-jam, I love a good break-up song (see my list over on Abby's blog). Take it away, Abby!

A great playlist isn't just a collection of songs, it's a journey. And when you're trying to get over somebody, that journey can take you from where you are -- sad, wallowing, sprawled on the sofa cramming chips into your gaping mouth while watching Food Network (or is that just me?) -- to where you so desperately want to be: happy, functional, free. And awesome, obviously. So, cue up the right songs, settle in, and prepare to kick your crush for good!

#GettingOver playlist.
Part One: the wallow.
1. 14th Street by Laura Cantrell. -- a sweet ode to unrequited crushing, Laura meets her object of desire on the street, and pines. Simple, but oh, we've all been there: "You've got nothing to lose/ but I'm losing sleep."
2. Jessie's Girl by Rick Springfield. -- Yes, the cheesy classic in all it's unrequited glory. Perfect for bouncing around, yelling out, "I wish that I had JESSIE'S GIRL".
3. You Belong with Me by Taylor Swift. -- We've all been there, lord knows I have. Your crush is going out with someone else, when the perfect person is right in front of him all this time! She doesn't get him, and you're the one who winds up offering advice and support. THE WORST.

Part Two: the fight back.
5. Bye Bye Bye by N*SYNC. Yes, I went there. Why? Because of awesome, that's why! (It aint' no lie). Stamp the floor and pump your arms with this boyband classic.
6. Survivor by Destiny's Child. Because you are.
7. Gunpowder and Lead by Miranda Lambert/ Before He Cheats by Carrie Underwood.Nobody does breakup empowerment like country music, and this is a double hit of lyin'. cheatin'. no good payback. Because revenge fantasies are totally healthy!

Part Three: Moving on songs.
8. Hold On When You Get Love by Stars. A lovely, hopeful, sweet reminder of the fact it's always worth trying.
9. Begin Again by Taylor Swift."I've been spending the last eight months/ thinking all love does is break/ and burn/ and end/ but on a Wednesday/ in a cafe/ I watch it begin again."

Thanks Abby!

GIVEAWAY TIME! And now you get a chance to win your very own paperback copy of Getting Over Garrett Delaney! All you have to do is comment with your favorite #GettingOver song! I'll pick one person from random at 8:00 p.m. EST on Sunday, January 6th. US only. (And please note, I do have to approve comments of new people, so it may take a couple hours for it to show up.)

Good luck! XO, Elizabeth

UPDATE: The contest is closed, thanks to all who entered and congratulations to Anastasia!