Sunday, October 31, 2010 0 comments

DELETE—The sales rack at Bloomingdales

by Brittany Geragotelis

Once a week, my guest blogger (who shall remain nameless...okay, not nameless...let's call her
Ms. Sassy Pants. Sassy for short) stops by to share all the things in her life that deserve a big, fat DELETE. Anyhoo, her majesty is back and giving us some tips to surviving a trip to Bloomingdales—on a big sales day. Check out what she had to say and then come up with a few DELETE's of your own.

This weekend I decided to catch up on a few errands and participate in some retail therapy. The sun was shining, the streets were clear and the City was quiet. It was the beginning of a beautiful Sunday afternoon—or so I thought. In actuality, I'd stepped into my worst nightmare: a sale at Bloomingdales.

Watching women sift through garments on a sale rack is like watching starving rats fighting for the last piece of cheese. It's not to be entered into lightly, and in most instances should be considered a full-contact sport. But no worries, I was totally prepared. I had armed myself with not one, but TWO large coffees, sprinkled in some intolerance, a dash of PMS and a pepper of common sense; everything I needed to ward off a day full of DELETES.

While navigating a department store there are five unspoken rules that need to be followed. Any violation of these rules will result in being escorted from the premises. Well, not really, but you WILL get a big fat DELETE.

ONE: If someone is positioned in front of a sales rack, has gotten there first, and has begun to dig through it, you must wait at least 30 seconds to approach the same rack. Failure to adhere to this rule could cost you a limb or an eyeball (whichever you prefer). Do you really think you can get away with barging in? Go ahead and take your chances…DELETE!

TWO: Closely following rule number one, do NOT invade someone’s personal space while they are shopping. If ANY part of your body is touching me or I can smell your pits…DELETE!

THREE: This goes out to the “fragrance” girls: Do I look like I want a sample? Do I give off the aura of a filthy wench that needs just a little spritz of eau de whatever, to turn me into a lovely princess? Because that is going to solve all my worldly troubles…DELETE!

FOUR: Don’t bring your pet into the store...unless it’s your boyfriend or husband…DELETE!

FIVE: Overly-aggressive salespeople…be wary. They can sense a weak will like bees can sense fear. Unless I ask for help...you best steer clear! DELETE!

So, it's safe to say that Ms. Sassy Pants certainly wears the pants when it comes to strategic shopping. Arm yourself, have fun and at the first sign of trouble, all you have to do is DELETE! See you next week!

5x5,

B.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 2 comments

Up to mischief this Halloween

by Brittany Geragotelis

I've always loved Halloween.
It's not my favorite holiday (That would be Christmas, followed by Friday the 13th), but it's definitely in my top five. The truth is, there are two things I like about it. One, it's a day devoted to scariness. The air seems more electric, you get startled a little easier at noises, you start to believe that ghosts, vampires, aliens, ghouls and things that go bump in the night might not be fiction. I love that on Halloween (or really any time that weekend), you can turn the TV to any channel and land on some slasher film starring some masked man chasing after young coeds, documentaries that manage to catch a murder on tape or ghosts haunting people, houses and families. In other words, it's AWESOME.

The other reason I love this holiday is because I revel in the idea of dressing up in a costume and being something else—someone else. A fantasy version of me, if you will.

And no, I don't mean a fantasy version in the slutty kind of way. In fact, I sort of feel like it's cheating the holiday when people dress up as slutty nurses, slutty bumblebees or slutty M&M's (Oh yeah, that's right..someone somewhere actually managed to make a chocolaty desert candy sexual. Now that takes some real skill...or just a drunk college girl who decided to wear the little kid's candy costume sans pants....). Take a look at a few of this year's gems:

























































































Come to think of it, I actually kind of like the Freddy Kreuger look....But back to the real costumes. I love becoming someone else....just for the day/night. Over the past 9 years since I moved to NYC, I've sported a variety of costumes: some really imaginative, some funny and others....a bit obscure. But all were fun! Here's what I've dressed up as in the past:
















A cheerleader























A punk rocker




















Mary Kate & Ashley Olsen






















Illyria from "Angel"
























Blair Waldorf from "Gossip Girl"


Today is my last day in the office before Halloween, so my staff and I decided it would be fun to dress up. My costume this year? Michael Jackson from his Thriller video. What do you think?























So what are you going to be this Sunday? Leave your comments above and then go have a treat for me! If you send me a picture of you in your Halloween costume, I'll post it on my blog! E-mail pics to thebookslayer@gmail.com

5x5,
B.
0 comments

Random thoughts from a "Glee" star....

by Brittany Geragotelis

I really hate to say this, but I wasn't all that thrilled by last night's episode of "Glee." And as I reflected on why this may have been true, I realized that it's because I've never actually seen Rocky Horror Picture Show. I'm sure everyone out there who's seen the show loved the special Halloween ep FOX aired last night. But alas, I think that besides the phenomenal writing, incredible acting and inspiring messages, part of the draw of the show for me is singing along to the tunes.

I love that "Glee" does such a great job of mixing in old-school hits with current smashes....guaranteeing that I'll love most of the music they play on each ep. And yes, I am that kind of watcher. I totally sit there, singing along with every song I know, sometimes drowning out the actual singers on the show. To be honest, I don't know how Matt puts up with watching it with me sometimes...but that's his cross to bear, I suppose.

So, I definitely think that part of the reason I wasn't as drawn to this episode was because I simply couldn't sing along. For the first time ever in the show's history, I had never heard a single one of the songs the cast sang. Oddly, Matt wasn't a fan, either, and he, too, has never seen Rocky Horror. Coincidence? I think not. Could the real magic be in the music? What do you think?

For those of you out there who also found themselves without a tune to sing last night, here's a little consolation prize. I recently stumbled upon Dianna Agron's personal blog. A fan of the beautiful actress, but not knowing a whole lot about her, I spent some time browsing her posts (which mostly include art, videos and random thoughts). If you're as intrigued about her as I am, take a look...you'll even get a chance to read her note responding to the recent GQ scandal. I promise, it won't disappoint.

And lastly, here's my favorite quote from last night:
Kurt: "So, what are you going to be for Halloween this year?"
Brittany: "I'm going as a peanut allergy."

5x5,
B
Monday, October 25, 2010 0 comments

Can celebs really write?

by Brittany Geragotelis

Now, it's no secret that I'm celeb-obsessed. In fact, I was in the elevator with a co-worker yesterday and told her that I'm not fond of history-based TV shows like "The Tudors," because it's hard for me to find relevance in the stories in regards to my real life; but shows about the history of celebs? I'm all over it!

So, it's not surprising that I actually really look forward to reading books "written" by celebs. I know that for a lot of authors, this idea of a celeb penning a book is a point of contention. The argument being that a majority of them don't actually write their own books. That Ghost Writers tend to do most of the writing and the celebs chime in or add a few paragraphs here and there. And who knows, maybe that's true.

I can understand writers who feel that pang of unfairness that comes along with how easily celebs are offered book deals, though. To think of all the thousands of writers out there who just want to catch a break and land their first deal, but because they're "unknowns" they'll never get the chance...well, it's a little frustrating to say the least. But does this mean that there shouldn't be a place on the bookshelves for celeb-driven books? Of course not. Because the truth is, the public wants to read them. And I do believe that some celebs have true writing talent (I know it's not fiction, but Tori Spelling's books are some of my favorites of all time). Why should celebs be considered any less worthy of having people read their stuff than anyone else?


On this note, I'm trying to keep an open mind as I start to read Hilary Duff's debut book, Elixir. I'm a fan of Hilary's, so I'm hoping it's good, but I have to mention that it seems that she did have a little help from another writer who's given credit on the title page (but not on the cover; interesting.). How much did she write herself? That's a good question....either way, I'm excited to see what it's like. Here's the book summary:


"Seventeen-year-old Clea Raymond has felt the glare of the spotlight her entire life. The daughter of a renowned surgeon and a prominent politician, she has become a talented photojournalist who takes refuge in a world that allows her to travel to many exotic places. But after Clea's father disappears while on a humanitarian mission, Clea begins to notice eerie, shadowy images in her photos of a strange and beautiful young man—a man she has never seen before.

When fate brings Clea and this man together, she is stunned by the immediate and powerful connection she feels with him. As they grow closer, they are drawn deep into the mystery behind her father's disappearance, and they discover the centuries-old truth behind their intense bond. Torn by a dangerous love triangle and haunted by a powerful secret that hold their fates, together they race against time to unravel their pasts in order to save their lives—and their futures."


Sounds interesting, no? What do you think? Is it going to be a hit or a flop? Do you think you'll pick it up or boycott it because a celeb's attached?

Also on the way: Lo Bosworth's The Lo-Down ("The Hills" reality starlet publishes a tongue-in-cheek look at the dating do's and dont's); Kardashian Konfidential (Kim, Kourtney and Khloe Kardashian have come together to pen a family autobiography which includes fun facts and style tips.); Nicole Richie's second fiction book Priceless: A Novel (The former "Simple Life" star is back with another tale of celebrity and scandal.); and Starlit: A Novel by Lisa Rinna (This book, written by the soap and now reality show star tells a "fictional" tale of three struggling actresses trying to make it big in Tinsletown.).

5x5,
B.


Sunday, October 24, 2010 2 comments

DELETE—Food shopping in NYC

by Brittany Geragotelis

Once a week, my guest blogger (who shall remain nameless...okay, not nameless...let's call her
Ms. Sassy Pants. Sassy for short) stops by to share all the things in her life that deserve a big, fat DELETE. Anyhoo, her majesty is back and wondering why going to the store is such a pain in her ass. Check out what she had to say and then come up with a few DELETE's of your own.

If there's one thing I hate more than people, it's food shopping…or Facebook…but we can address that another week. If you haven’t had the pleasure of navigating the isles of the New York City “grocery store,” let me tell you kiddies—it’s chock full of DELETES. The food stores here are about the size of a newsstand on steroids. Sprinkle in some lovely New Yorkers and you can see where this is going.

So, let’s start with the cart. You know, the one that has the handicapped wheel. The one that insists on bearing right, when with all your might you're trying to navigate forward (hmmm this is sounding strangely like my last relationship). Now, some genius has decided to create the mini-cart (which I never approved by the way). These mini-carts were designed so that you could pull them behind you like luggage. But in the hands of an elderly couple or a 5-year-old, they can become deadly weapons. One word…DELETE!

Next, we have the infamous Sunday circular. You know, the one that lists all the specials for the week. Unfortunately all the bargain shoppers feel it necessary to stand in the middle of the aisle—the aisle, I might add, which is so small that you’d be lucky to fit two starving supermodels down it side by side. So, the bargain shoppers stand there, holding the paper, arms fully extended, eying their next coveted item. You just can’t get away from these people. They're everywhere! Standing in front of the cheese counter; the meat counter; the cleaning supplies. For the love of God it’s an epidemic! So, imagine what it's like for me to navigate around little Miss Super Saver while I'm trying to get to the ice cream. I’m on a mission here, Missy. Move your ass before it gets DELETED.

And finally, you have to love the check out. Here are a few items that made the list this week, which most certainly deserve a big fat DELETE:

The woman in front of you who price-checks every item she has. Hey, buddy, maybe you should apply for a job since you seem to like playing cashier for the day…DELETE.

People who bring 10 items to the 8 items or less lane. I don't care who you are, you’re not that special and yes the rules apply to you, too…DELETE.

Parents who let their kids scream for candy and hang off the cart like monkeys. Give them the bleeping candy and let us wait in peace…DELETE.

The guy you're stuck behind in line who doesn’t have enough money to pay. Really? Weren’t you the one reading the circular a few minutes ago? I would've thought you'd be better prepared…DELETE.

The Chatty Kathy. You know who I’m talking about. She thinks everyone's her best friend and wants to chat it up with the cashier, you and the kids hanging off the cart. Zip the lip, lady. And oh yeah, forgot to tell you…DELETE!

So until next time…shop in peace and let’s see what we can cook up for next week. Who would you DELETE during your grocery store visit? Leave your comments above!


5x5,

B

Friday, October 22, 2010 1 comments

From the mouths of babes...

by Brittany Geragotelis

Not these babes!





















These babes!






















So, a friend of mine (let's call her Mrs. Sparkle) recently started volunteering at a school as a teacher's assistant and every time I see her, she has one more story to tell me about the students she works with. And let me just say, the stuff that comes out of their mouths...well, it sort of always makes my day. Since it's Friday, I thought I'd share some of them with all of you--you know, to start your weekend off with a chuckle. Here they are.

"I want Mrs. Sparkle to be my teacher, because she has nicer shoes."
(This was said by a kid who was comparing her actual teacher to Mrs. Sparkle)

"Mrs. Sparkle, are you from Paris?"
(She's not. And has no accent that would suggest she was from anywhere but America. Mrs. Sparkle still has no idea why the student thought this.)

"Mrs. Sparkle, will you be my mom?"
(This would have been sweet if the kid wasn't in seventh grade...seems like an odd thing to say for a pre-teen.)

"I was gay last year, but now I'm straight again."
(Mrs. Sparkle says a little girl said this as if it were a lightswitch she could turn on and off depending on how she felt.)

"I know she's pregnant and all, but doesn't she know they have cute maternity clothes out there? I like Mrs. Sparkle a lot more because she always dresses nice."
(Mrs. Sparkle felt really badly about this; She and the teacher she assists were reading the kids' creative writing and found this gem in the pile, written by a student. The teacher insisted it didn't bother her, but Mrs. Sparkle felt horrible.)

What's the funniest thing you've heard a kid say lately? Leave it in the comments above! Happy Friday!

5x5,
B.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010 4 comments

When do you call it quits?

by Brittany Geragotelis

I'm about 80 pages into a book right now that's being published in February by one of the top houses out there—and I just can't get into it. It was described to me as a detective book that's sort of like "Veronica Mars," so of course I had high hopes for it.

Well, let me tell you...this book is NOTHING like "VM." In fact the ONLY thing about this book that's similar to one of my favorite shows of all time is the fact that the main character is a teen detective. But that's where the similarities end. It's not that it's horribly written or that the storyline isn't interesting, it's just that the way the characters speak is so...well, for lack of a better word, weird. In a fictional world where kids say "shite" to curse, call each other "cool characters" and say phrases like "Those Pinkertons are too nice for their own good," I simply can't identify and find the language in the book distracting.

So why am I still reading it then?

Well, to be honest, part of me hopes that it'll get better. But is this just a waste of valuable reading time that I could be spending devouring a book that I actually really enjoy? I've spent thousands of hours reading hundreds of books in my lifetime and have learned that I rarely start off disliking a book and change my mind by the end of it. In fact, I'm almost always disappointed when I force myself to keep reading until the end. So why do so many of us insist on sticking with a book that we're obviously not that into?

I think it's because that's what teachers and adults have conditioned us to do. We've been taught that you can't judge a book until you've read it. That certain books are worth reading, even if you dislike them, simply because a group of people deemed them important enough and worthy of literary study. We're encouraged from a young age, not to give up on things halfway through, that quitting or giving up on something makes us weak or bad in some way. And maybe quitting isn't the answer for some things...but books?

I had an English teacher in college who absolutely blew my mind one day when he said, "If you don't like the book you're reading, you're allowed to stop reading it. There are too many great books out there to waste your time with ones you dislike." I was floored by this revelation. I was also slightly worried that the university would revoke his "teacher's card" for giving his students permission to think for themselves and make up their own minds about what they were reading. I loved that he had the balls to say that, because he's totally right. There are plenty of books out there that remind me of why I fell in love with reading in the first place. So why am I feeling guilty about putting down this book before finishing it?

What do you guys think I should do? Give the book another 50 pages and see if it gets better? Close the pages for good and start another book? Tell me what you think and I'll go with whatever the majority says.

5x5,
B.
Tuesday, October 19, 2010 3 comments

The Power of Purple

by Brittany Geragotelis

Today, I'm wearing purple.
And why aren't I sporting my signature color (pink), you might ask? Because today, October 20th, people across the U.S. are being encouraged to don purple to take a stand against bullying, harassment and hateful speech. That's why I'm proudly wearing purple today.

This show of support was prompted by the rash of suicides by gay teens after they were bullied by their peers. The most recent victim was 18-year-old Tyler Clementi, whose roommate at Rutgers University hid a camera in their dorm room and broadcast a video of him in the room with another man live on the internet. The following day, Clementi jumped off the George Washington Bridge.

Hate and fear and ignorance of those who are even the slightest bit different than the "norm," has got to stop. And although this push of purple was spurred because of the prejudice against gay people and lesbians, they aren't the only ones out there who experience bullying and harassment. Unfortunately, there's a lot of that going around. I, myself, was bullied a lot in high school, and still to this day, have very few happy memories of that period of my life. See, I wasn't popular in school and never really fit in. A few mean girls used to threaten to beat me up after football games and would even sit right in front of me in the stands as I cheered, shouting out how they were going to kick my ass. Then, teammates would have to walk me out to the car to make sure I wasn't jumped. A few times they threw full Gatorade bottles at me while I cheered on the sidelines.

Was my experience any more serious than what the G&L community has to go through? Probably not. But the point is that there are people out there who put a lot of thought and energy into making my life miserable. And it happens much too often, to too many people. We have got to start letting people know that this kind of behavior is wrong and unacceptable. And an easy way we can start is by showing our solidarity today.

So, grab a purple fleece, a lavendar skirt, a violet headband—anything in the purple family will do just fine—and help stand up to bullies.

5x5,
B.
Monday, October 18, 2010 0 comments

Review: You by Charles Benoit

by Brittany Geragotelis

The book cover shows shattered glass, along with the reviews:
"Sharp." "Authentic, Ambitious, and Gripping." "Gut-Wrenching." "Touching." "Shattering." "Powerful." "Outstanding, Original, Haunting." "Poignant." "Amazing." "Stunning." "Devastating." "Unforgettable."

The book is called You by Charles Benoit, and based on the covers (front and back), it's nearly impossible to tell what you're going to get when you open it up. I first heard about You in the review section of a teen magazine (I think it was Teen Vogue, although I'm not entirely sure). And even then, the review was pretty vague. All I was told was that it was good, different than anything else out there and a must-read.

So, I used my special powers of persuasion to secure a review copy of the book so I could find out for myself what the novel in question was all about. And here's what I found...

This story could be yours. Well, sort of.

You is about a boy, Kyle, who has never really fit in at his school. Sure, he has friends...well, they're more like acquaintances. And he's got the girl...even though it's just as her friend. But he's also a Hoodie (this school's gothish dead-head), is bullied by jocks, has major anger issues and a strained relationship with his parents. When new student, Zack, shows up at school, life as Kyle knows it is changed forever. With an attitude bigger than Kanye's, Kyle's new buddy sweeps him up into a world of privilege, blackmail, crime and passion—and you know what that means. Someone will end up getting hurt.

The book itself was a quick read. Not at all hard to fly through and entertaining enough to keep me reading, though most of the book was quite mellow in action. I enjoyed the perspective the author wrote from. He writes the whole book as if YOU were Kyle, which helps to make you feel more connected to the character (as if you have a hand in the things he does and are experiencing the fear, anger and pain along with him).

With this said, I found the climax of the book a little underwhelming and slightly obvious. There was no shock when all was said and done and I didn't feel like the ending wrapped up the story in a satisfying way. However, I enjoyed the writing and the general story (maybe because like I said, the underlying story of feeling like we don't fit in and that life can often be cruel, is one that most of us can identify with), so I wasn't itching for it to be over. When it was though, I sort of wished I hadn't read the last few pages.

All in all, the book is worth reading. If for nothing else but the trip down high school's memory lane.

5x5,
B.
Sunday, October 17, 2010 2 comments

DELETE—Didn't your parents teach you any manners?

by Brittany Geragotelis

Once a week, my guest blogger (who shall remain nameless...okay, not nameless...let's call her
Ms. Sassy Pants. Sassy for short) stops by to share all the things in her life that deserve a big, fat DELETE. Anyhoo, her majesty is back and wondering what happened to good, old-fashioned manners. Check out what she had to say and then come up with a few DELETE's of your own.


Question: Whatever happened to manners? I’m really beginning to notice a drastic decline in the likes of common courtesy. Did I miss the memo that said, "ATTENTION: The use of manners has been DELETED from public policy. Set forth and behave like a dirty bleep-hole."

Unfortunately (as you already know) I hate people. And with this recent (or maybe not so recent) development, I’m afraid it's going to get to the point where Miss Sassy Pants (a.k.a. Miss Manners) will never be able to leave the house again. I’m going to become the fat cat lady who eats pornographically and watches too much reality TV…wait a minute…


Well, against all odds I actually made it out of the house Saturday night and met a friend for dinner. It was late and there were only three of us in the restaurant; my friend, me and a man sitting across from us. PERFECT right? Quiet and empty. We could actually hold a conversation without annoying people sitting right on top of us. WRONG! You know, sometimes I feel like I’m being punked...but I'm getting off topic.

The man sitting across from us apparently DID get the aforementioned memo, because the entire time he was snorzeling and sniffing (to put it politely) his snot back up his nose and into his throat as he ate his dinner (need a tissue, pal?). Not to mention, as he was performing his nasal gymnastics, he was also slurping his food and making smacking mouth noises. I’m sorry…Were we eating in a bleeping barn?

No wonder he was eating alone. One word for you buddy…DELETE!

Now a few more to add to the list this week:

Picking your nose in public. I don’t care what you do at home, but I don’t need to see you mining for gold while I'm eating dinner or shopping for a top. Get those sausage fingers out of your nose…DELETE!


Mouth breathers...DELETE!

Sneezing and not covering your face. I don’t need another shower today, buddy…DELETE!

Poor grammar and annunciation. For example, say frustrated out loud. It’s spelled FRUSTRATED…not FUH-strated. Or library……not LY-BERRY. WTF, people...DELETE!

Eating stinky food (or food in general) on any form of public transportation. And just so you know, the definition of public transportation includes, trains, taxis, buses and subways…DELETE!

Anyone that calls me “Mommi.” I mean, really?!? Did I give birth to you? I don't think so...DUH-LETE!

Until next time kids (because apparently I’m your “Mommi”)—behave!


What has you reaching for the DELETE button this week? Go ahead and leave yours in the comments section here!

5x5,

B.

Thursday, October 14, 2010 1 comments

Celebrity Stalking

by Brittany Geragotelis

The latest celeb to join the cheer-ranks is Kendall Jenner. Not sure where you know the name? Well, this lovely brunette beauty is the much younger sister of Kim, Kloe and Kourtney Kardashian and one of the stars of the uber-popular E! show, "Keeping Up With the Kardashians."

I recently read (on some celeb-based site) that the daughter of sports legend Bruce Jenner, and social butterfly and mom-ager Kris Jenner, has joined her school's cheerleading squad. Now, although I'm not a fan of many reality shows (you'll never catch me watching "The Jersey Shore," "The Bachelor" or "The Real Housewives" of whatever), I have to admit, I sort of love the Kardashians. They all fascinate me, in the same way that most celebs do. Theirs is such a different lifestyle than the one I live, and I wonder what it must be like to be them. Not that I want to be them (don't think I could handle the 24/7 cameras and the scary paparazzi), but it's interesting to me to think of what it must be like.


Anyways, I've always really liked both Kylie and Kendall on the show. They're the perfect blend of sweet and innocent mixed with the sassyness that only a teenager who's trying to discover who she is can have. And they're both major beauties. So when I found out that Kendall was a cheerleader, my first thought was...how can we get her on the cover of our magazine?

And my second thought was...this could be a really fun interview! There are so many things I'd like to ask her and I'd love to see what she's like sans video camera (although if they wanted to tape the shoot, I wouldn't hate the idea!). Now all I have to do is try to get in touch with Kris...which I thought would be easy, but has proven more difficult than I'd imagined. After leaving several e-mails at a few addresses, I'm wondering if I'm going to have to resort to sending them messages about it via twitter. How crazy is it that FB and Twitter have become acceptable ways for people to do business? So weird.

Anyways, if you had the chance to interview a Kardashian, what would you ask?

5x5,
B.
Wednesday, October 13, 2010 2 comments

What if you were a success?

by Brittany Geragotelis

One night a few months ago, I was listening to a few people talk about their hopes, dreams and fears, when one of them said something really profound:

"I'm not afraid of succeeding; I'm afraid of failing at a higher level."

Say what?!?!? I mean, WOW. And when I really thought about what this person meant by the comment, it made complete sense to me. See, there was a time back when I had an agent (ahhh, those were the days) when Harper Collins Childrens were considering taking on one of my books. I remember clearly the day that I got the phone call from my agent, telling me that an editor at the publishing house really loved the first part of my book (at the time, I'd only gotten about 50 pages into writing this particular novel), but wanted me to rewrite it in the first person (to better match the tone of my synopsis). My agent told me this was a very good sign and that chances were good that with the rewrite, we'd be in business.

Now, to say I was overjoyed, was an understatement. It was the first time since I'd begun the whole process that I actually started to believe it was really going to happen. An editor liked my writing enough to ask me to do a quick revision, so she could bring it to the rest of her colleagues and see if they felt the same way about it. I was so close to having my dreams come true....and for just a few moments (trust me, they were fleeting), I started to panic.

I thought: "Oh, God. What if I actually get what I want? What if they DO publish my book, and I have to go on book tours, and do interviews, and have strangers stare at me, and I end up in the tabloids for not looking cute enough when I go out to get coffee on the weekends...."

And then I came back to reality, because all I've ever wanted was to be published. It's my dream. I want to do the book signings, talk with people about the worlds I create, meet fans. I fully believe that writing is what I was MEANT to do. It's my passion. It's in my soul and I can't not do it. So why that instant fear over having my life's goal realized? I think the thing that was really driving my panic was the fear that I wouldn't be good enough, that people wouldn't like my books. I was afraid of failing in such a BIG way.

So, in that respect, it wasn't the success I was actually fearful of, I was scared of how it would feel to come that close to my dream and then fail. And fail in such a monumental way. And that, I thought, would have been devastating for me. Thus the reason for my momentary breakdown.

In the end, the editor ended up rejecting my book anyway (Duh. Otherwise, I wouldn't be looking for a new agent now!), which in a way, hurt much more than being rejected by some faceless publishing company who showed no interest from the beginning. Still, you can't go after the big rewards without a little risk. It's the laws of the universe.

Fear's gonna pop up whether you're succeeding or failing, in a rut or on a roll. The point is to keep your eyes on the prize and push past the fear. It'll be worth it when you finally get what you've always dreamed of.

What do you guys think? Scared of success or fear of failing?

5x5,
B.
0 comments

Help me get the word out there...

by Brittany Geragotelis

So, yesterday I was thinking: If I want to get my name out there as a writer and really be successful with my books, the bottom line is that I need to create an audience. It's not really enough now adays to be a good writer and publish a good book. You have to know how to get that great product out and into the hands of your readers. And to do that, you need to create a network of consumers, or friends in FB speak, or followers in the twitter world.

That's when I decided my next step in this journey to "successful published author" needs to be to start to grow my audience. My blog is how I stay in touch with my growing fanbase and let you all know about my book news. And although there isn't a ton to write about just yet, I WILL be publishing books in the near future. And when I do (either via the traditional way or by publishing myself—I know how many of you have requested a copy of a few of my books already and I'm not planning to leave you out in the cold), I need to have a large enough audience willing to read my books to really have a fair chance of surviving this brutal world of book publishing.

So, as a favor to me, if you're on Facebook, please visit my new FB fan page and "like" me. I'll be putting all of my Book Slayer updates on there from now on and you can help me spread the word about my blog. And then, if you want to go even one step further (and I'd so appreciate it), go ahead and encourage others on your FB page to check out my site (http://brittanythebookslayer.blogspot.com) or "like" me on FB, too. I truly believe that together, we can get me published.

Thanks so much for your continued support!

5x5,
B.
Monday, October 11, 2010 1 comments

Big news!!!

by Brittany Geragotelis

So, since I don't have any good and exciting news on the book front (haven't heard back from any more agents and haven't gotten an answer from any of the others who requested my full manuscript), I figured I should give you SOME kind of news to tide you over until I can get on this blog and say, "I DID IT! I DID IT! I FINALLY GOT ANOTHER AGENT!!!!! HOLY MOTHER OF ALL THINGS GOOD IN THIS WORLD SOMEONE'S FINALLY TAKEN A CHANCE ON ME!"

Then again, the news I've got for you instead could be described in a similar way:

"I DID IT! I DID IT! I FINALLY GOT A BOYFRIEND WHO LOVES ME ENOUGH TO SHACK UP WITH ME!!!! HOLY MOTHER OF ALL THINGS GOOD IN THIS WORLD, SOMEONE'S FINALLY TAKING A CHANCE ON ME!"

Hahahaha. Okay, so a bit dramatic, I know. And not exactly how I'd describe the situation (I mean, I'm a pretty good catch, after all). But the bottom line is this: Matt and I are moving in together! Let's say it together now. Yay!

After nearly three (blissful and dorky) years of dating, we've finally deemed each other worthy living companions and are planning to combine our forces and find a place we can call our own. So, where will we live you ask? Well, we're not sure yet, but we're looking into a few places. And even though we're not planning to make the big merger until January, we're planning to look at a bunch of places this weekend.

Hey, we figure, we don't want to wait til the last minute to search for our little love nest.

So, what are we looking for then? Well, here are just a few of the things that made our apartment wish list:

—Fitness room/gym in building (Both Matt and I work out regularly and it would be nice if we didn't have to leave our apartment to do it. Plus, it would save us gym memberships!)

—A dishwasher (Yes, to those of you out there who live somewhere OTHER than NYC, most apartments here don't have dishwashers. You have to do this horrible thing called, "washing your dishes by hand." I hate doing dishes so much that there was a 6-month time period where I bought plastic silverware and paper dishes, so that I could throw them out after I used them. So, yeah, a dishwasher is a must.)

—Rooftop patio/Rooftop garden (Again, not a necessity, but it would be nice to have a place to relax and/or sunbathe that didn't involve a ton of strangers leering at you while you do it.)

—24/hour Doorman (My last apartment was broken into and both of us want the added security that a round-the-clock watchman provides. Feeling safe in your home is super important to us!)

—A large kitchen with more than one counter (Matt and I cook a lot and right now, my kitchen isn't even big enough for the two of us to stand in, let alone cook in. And there's about half a counter in there. I think it's time for a big girl kitchen.)

—Laundry on premises, preferably in unit (Again, not every apartment building has a laundry room. And very few actually have a washer and dryer in the individual apartments. Not only would having one in our apartment save us time and money, but we're going to have twice as many clothes to clean between the two of us now!)

Balcony (Not a must, but think of how nice it would be to wake up in the morning on a nice weekend day and be able to sit outside and drink your coffee while looking out at the NYC skyline. A-MAZING!)

A swimming pool (Okay, I never would have put this on the list before, but Matt and I have already sort of started looking and I'm amazed at how many places actually have pools in the buildings around here! So, now that I know they're available, I kind of want one, too. Can you blame a girl?)

So, I think that's about it for now. I'll keep you guys up to date on the apartment hunt and if you can think up any other cool things we should be looking for in a place to live, leave them in the comments above.

Happy (apartment) Hunting!

5x5,
B.
Sunday, October 10, 2010 1 comments

DELETE—Staten Island and Evangelists

by Brittany Geragotelis

Just another manic Monday! Good thing I have Ms. Sassy Pants here with me to start the week off with a bang. If you haven't read her columns before, you're in for a treat! This week, Ms. Sassy gives us a rundown of all the things that deserve a big, fat DELETE. Take a look at what's annoying her right now:

Ahhhh, another week behind me…and what a week it was. Or so I thought. I sat down today with an empty slate. Nothing to report. Have I been reformed? Am I becoming an adult? Am I developing a conscious? What in God’s name is happening to me?!?! This has NOT been approved. And then it hit me: Staten Island. Need I say more? Yes, yes I do…DOUBLE DELETE!

Last weekend I decided that I was going to explore the City like a tourist. Maybe if I put myself in their shoes I wouldn’t be so quick to judge (Oh, who am I kidding?). So in my (soon to be failed) attempt to become “one of them” I decided to take a ride on the Staten Island Ferry. Oh, and did I mention I was on a date? I thought it would be so romantical to take a moonlit cruise across the river, with views of the City skyline and the Statue of Liberty lit up at night. And to top it off…it was FREE. Have you ever heard of too good to be true? Well, you can see where this is going…

I should have realized when I walked into the terminal and there was an evangelist holding a huge sign that said, “JESUS DIED FOR US SINNERS” and "REPENT," spelled upside down and backwards, that this was going to be an evening chock full of DELETES. So here's my list for the week…brought to you in part by the denizens of Staten Island.

Let’s start with Mr. Praise Jesus. You are free to believe what you choose—just don’t push it on me, pal! Especially when I’m on a date. It kind of ruins the mood. DELETE!

People who sell jewelry in public restrooms. Yes, I said it. The cleaning attendant was actually sitting on the bathroom floor making beaded necklaces and trying to sell them to people waiting in line. Dare I ask where those beads have been? DELETE!

Women who block the sink as they take photos of themselves in the bathroom mirror. Yo, Miss I’m All That, move that half-covered ass of yours and let a girl scrub up. DELETE!

Dudes with hair gel…period. DELETE!

The Staten Island dress code. Apparently I missed the memo, but the 80’s are back in full force and not in a good way. Big hair, high heels and short skirts…do I hear the theme song from Working Girl playing in the background? Nope…DELETE!


So my prayers have been answered; ironically, thanks to Mr. Praise Jesus et al. I’m still a cynical bitch with a bag full of judgment and DELETES. See you next week.

5x5,

B.

Thursday, October 7, 2010 3 comments

Is it sex confidence or just low self-esteem?

by Brittany Geragotelis

Have you heard about the former Duke student who did her thesis on all the guys she hooked up with while in school? Apparently she never meant for it to become public consumption, but sent it to three of her girlfriends and one of them leaked it to the cyberworld. In the more than 40 page powerpoint presentation, the girl describes in great detail, her sexual escapades with over 13 Duke athletes, giving pros and cons to each encounter, as well as ranking them and showing collages of pictures of each.

Some are giving the girl props for her sexual confidence and likening her "research" to a sort of "Sex and the City" girl power move. Others just see a girl with low self-esteem who's trying to make light of her promiscuity because of underlying guilt and regret. Even more are pointing out that guys do these sort of public sex "outtings" all the time, so why is this story making such big headlines?

What do you think? Sexy or sad?

5x5,
B.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010 2 comments

Love advice from the Professional Wingman himself!

by Brittany Geragotelis

A little while ago I posted about a professional wingman whose job it is to help lonely people find love. Well shortly after I posted it, the wingman himself, Thomas Edwards, contacted me and thanked me for the shout-out. So naturally, being the journalist that I am, I asked him if he'd be willing to answer a few questions for my readers. Guess what: The real-life cupid said YES and was kind enough to take some time out of his busy schedule of hooking people up to give you all a few lessons on LOVE.


Book Slayer: What do you think is the most common problem people encounter when it comes to dating?
Professional Wingman: A wise man said: “Our imaginations are limited by our experiences.” If you don’t have experience when it comes to dating then you won't really be sure what’s possible and you’ll be nervous to put yourself out there. Too many people assume the worst and they psyche themselves out.

If you shift your mindset and focus on just becoming a better person through new and different experiences (dating or not), it’ll allow you to make better decisions in the future while exuding a more confident position, which ultimately leads to greater dating success.


Book Slayer: Did you ever think this would become your job?
Professional Wingman: Absolutely NOT. Ever since I was a kid, I’d always wanted to produce video games for a living. I mean, to me, that was the best job in the world—getting paid to play video games.

When I wasn’t having any luck finding an entry level position out of college, I started to look at other passions of mine. Self-development was one of those passions and it slowly led to where I am today. Two years ago, if you
d told me I’d be making a living helping people find love, I’d have laughed in your face.


Book Slayer: Any advice on places people can go to meet someone other than at a bar?
Professional Wingman: It’s been said that less than 5% of relationships start at a bar or club. So where do you go? Everywhere else! There are TONS of places you can go to meet people. Wine tastings, social sports clubs, cooking and dance classes, sporting events, the train, the bus, book stores, coffee shops, the grocery store, a concert, the park, the Apple store—literally anywhere.

If you shift your focus to allowing yourself to be open to meeting people at any moment, you’ll be very successful. It could be as simple as unplugging your ears and eyes from your phone or iPod and looking up (and smiling, of course) when you
re walking down the street.

One of the popular ways however, is through friends. One way you can create or find these opportunities is by going to or having your own house parties and inviting friends.


Book Slayer: Whats the most shocking pick-up line youve ever heard someone say? The most effective?
Professional Wingman: The most shocking line I’ve heard someone use was when a guy approached two girls and said, “Hey girls, I’m doing a survey on attractive women being approached by average guys.” The girls looked a little perplexed but were still game for what he was going to say next. From there though, he just asked silly and funny questions that made it clear he was making an excuse to talk to them. The girls laughed and obviously liked the line but after that, he didn’t know where to go, so the conversation died. I wouldn’t suggest using that one unless you know how to shift the conversation.

The most effective line isn’t really a line. It’s just a clear, simple and direct statement: “Hey, how’s it goin’? My name is [insert name here].” Women will respect your confidence in approaching them so boldly and if your body language doesn’t falter, she’ll reward you by having a conversation. Then, it’s up to you to prove you’re the real deal and build some attraction.


Book Slayer: Whats your most memorable success story?
Professional Wingman: About three months ago, a client called me, looking for help. His claim was that he was having too many one-night stands and wanted to find a more legitimate, long-term relationship. He was in college and under 20 so bars, clubs and his college campus were out of the question for him during the summer.

Over the phone, we strategized other places he could go during the day to meet girls and how to approach them. He started off very nervous about things but slowly started to improve. He was meeting girls at the gym, coffee shops, the mall and even online. He was progressing amazingly, considering most men dread trying to meet women during the day.

Eventually, it was time for school and I knew things were going to be drastically different for him in a great way. Within a week, hed met a girl at a BBQ and they ended up having a couple of dates. He wanted to sleep with her but wasn’t sure if it was the right move, “considering his past.” I told him to do what felt right. If you really like this girl, you’ll make it work.

So then, I got a text message from him at 2:30 in the morning saying, “Mission accomplished!” I told him to e-mail me the details in the morning and when I heard from him, I was shocked to find out that he had something to confess. He told me that hed been a virgin the whole time, and the night before, hed lost his virginity. When I asked him about the one-night stands, he said that hed had many—but they were of the kissing variety. In the end, he said it felt like seeing The Matrix for the first time!


Book Slayer: Thats awesome! So, since youre a professional wingman, does that mean youre lucky in love, too?
Professional Wingman: Indeed, I am! I have an amazing girlfriend with whom I’ll be celebrating our one-year anniversary with in a few weeks. The funny thing is, she’s also an online dating coach, and at the time, I was single by choice, so I definitely didn’t see her coming.

We
d been following each other on Twitter, because we were in the same industry, and one day she sent me a direct message wanting to meet up to talk collaboration. I happened to be on my way to NYC at the time, but I decided to go back to Boston a day early to meet with her. Best decision Ive EVER made in my life. Shes an amazing woman and I’ve never been so happy.


Book Slayer: Awwww! Can you give us a few general dating tips for those who are still searching for love?
Professional Wingman: This may sound cliché, but love happens when you’re not looking. Why? Because your mind is focusing on everything else in your life, so when it comes to dating and relationships, your mindset is less pressured, which counter-intuitively, makes you more successful.

Having said that, you need to have some semblance of a plan. Dating doesn’t just happen, especially when you’re staying at home, catching up on TV shows off your DVR with your cat every night. Know what you want, find out where it is and go to the source. Go out with friends and try to create new friends. It’s important to have multiple social circles so you can have a variety of things to do, which will lead to meeting new people.

On top of all this, it’s important to push yourself out of your comfort zone and be willing to try things differently. If whatever you’ve been doing hasn’t been making you happy, it’s time to change things up. Different habits, create different results. You’re meant to find love. Truly believe that and you’ll get it!

5x5,
B.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010 2 comments

Guess what I brought back from Disney with me?

by Brittany Geragotelis

So, I'm back from Disney—I know, BOOOOOOOO! Florida was in the high 80s and sunny; New York, 60 and rainy. Disney was full of fun and roller coasters; New York is work, work, work. On vacation, all my meals were cooked for me and I had gluten-free Mickey waffles every morning; New York means I'm back to cooking for myself, trying to eat healthy, working out every day and having protein bars for breakfast.

And most annoyingly, in Florida I was healthy; here in New York, I'm sick.

The day after we arrived back in town I developed a cold which went from slight sneezing to stuffy, sore throat and cough. Now, I'm full-blown sick and wishing I had a week to recover from it. I've gotta admit, it's even harder to be excited about being back in town when you're having problems breathing out of your nose and your stomach muscles hurt from coughing so much.

But there are some good things about being back home:

*I'm catching up on all my TV shows! When Matt and I got back, we had a marathon night of TV that we'd missed while we were gone. House, Glee, Medium, The Office, Gossip Girl, America's Next Top Model, Hellcats, Private Practice, Grey's Anatomy, How I Met Your Mother, Nikita. As much as I loved Disney, I also love my must-see TV!
*Seeing all my friends again! There are about fifteen people in my life that I see on a daily basis whom my life wouldn't be the same without. I know this isn't typical of a workplace, but some of my best friends are my co-workers. Co-workers (like Toni and Marisa) have been my long-term friends and then there are my newer friends (like Jess and Kathy) who I truly enjoy seeing on a daily basis. We also just got a new addition to our team at work, Morgan, and I was totally excited to come back to see her, too (I can already tell she's going to be in that circle of friends, too)! And then there are my happy hour buddies (Tammy, Kate, Jessica, etc) who I meet up with nightly and we gab, gossip and giggle together like only girlfriends do. As much as I loved having some alone time with my man, I did miss my BFF's.
*Getting back to my routine. My mom likes to joke that I would be the easiest person to stalk (take note all you stalkers out there), because I like to walk the same way to and from the subway every day. And I'm not just talking just walking down certain streets, but I like to cross to the other sidewalk at specific places and walk on certain sides of the streets....and I don't like to deviate from my routine. As much as I loved the adventurous nature of our trip to Disney, I find comfort in knowing where I'm going to be headed every day, what's on my to-do list and that at the end of the day, I'm going to be snuggled up with my honey watching whatever show's on that night and typing away on our respective computers.
*And back to this blog! I tried my hardest to post blogs while I was away, but most days Matt and I were both so exhausted, I could barely keep my eyes open, let alone write one of these. And though keeping up this blog takes work and time, I really do enjoy writing it. Especially when I know that you all like reading it—that's really what makes it all worth it!

So, I guess it's not all that bad to be back here in the bustling city....now if I could only get over this stinking cold!

5x5,
B.
 
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