Saturday, March 25, 2006

The Celebration Continues...

Since Vanessa's too busy with work to post, I thought I'd post some pics on my sale celebration.

After five long years of waiting, we finally cracked a bottle of Veuve Clicquot...the most amazingly good champagne!



And I got these gorgeous flowers...



...and balloon...



...from my wonderful friends in the New England RWA chapter. Thanks gals!!!

And thanks to everyone who has e-mailed and sent cards! It means the world to me! Have a great weekend!!

Marley = )

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Weekend eye candy...

Need I say more...a puffin...

Friday, March 17, 2006

We interrupt The Adventures of Vanessa Virtue...

...to bring you some news from the publishing world.

I'm immensely pleased to announce that I got a FOUR BOOK deal on Thursday afternoon from Penguin Putnam's Puffin Books for a YA chick lit series on collegiant sorority girls. Well, Publishers Marketplace says it better...

******
CHILDREN'S: YOUNG ADULT
Debut author Marley Gibson's four untitled books in a series about a group of collegiate sorority sisters, to Angelle Pilkington and Karen Chaplin at Puffin, in a nice deal, by Deidre Knight at The Knight Agency (world.) Deidre.Knight@knightagency.net
******

Deidre blogged about it on her agency site and my dear, wonderful, sweet friend (and critique partner), Diana Peterfreund announced it before I could even walk in the door this evening. But that's fine! I'm overwhelmed and humbled by sooooo much support from everyone.

As for the deets: Deidre asked me to put together a proposal for Puffin, so in about 5 weeks, I put together the partial, the character sketches and the outlines for three books. The wonderful editors at Puffin (my editors!!) loved what I did and we got the offer of four books with options for more in the sorority girl series. It's only a partial right now and I'll be writing extra hard for the rest of the year, but I couldn't be happier. It's an aggressive writing schedule, but I'm psyched to do it and I hope people will like the books. Just so happy that after five years of writing and submitting, we've finally hit pay dirt!

Thanks to everyone who has e-mailed and I can't begin to explain what your support means to me.

Hugs,
Marley = )

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

When the lights go down in the city...

Vanessa here...

And when the lights do down, it's time for me to go home. But noooooo....

Did I skip the pub crawl Friday night? Hell to the no. Not only did I go, but I had a grooving good time, hobbling along on my Brokeback Mountain foot. And, mama even got hooked up. His name was Collin and he was literally fresh off the boat from Ireland. Cute through my wine goggles. The accent just melted me. Apparently I was quite the flirt with him and I don't know whether he was just fascinated with my broken foot or my charming personality, but I gave him my number and hope he'll call me.

Sorry for my absence and thanks for sticking with me. I promise to be back in form after I heal completely.

In the meantime, I've been tagged by the lovely and talented Elizabeth Mahon...so here's her meme...

Four Score!

Four movies you would watch over and over:
French Kiss
Moulin Rouge
The Night We Never Met
It Happened One Night

Four places you have lived:
Boston, MA
Arlington, VA
Las Vegas, NV
Montgomery, AL

Four TV shows you love to watch:
Grey's Anatomy
America's Next Top Model
My Name is Earl
Project Runway

Four places you have been on vacation:
Cape Cod
New York City
Orlando
Montreal

Four websites you visit daily:
Brooklyn Bunny
Google
Yahoo
New York Times

Four of your favorite foods:
Turkey club sandwich
Clam chowder
Grilled corn
Salmon in any form or fashion

Four places you would rather be right now:
Antigua
Asleep
In bed with Mark McGrath
Paris

Four friends you are tagging that you think will respond:
Diana Peterfreund
Jennifer Echols
Shannon McKeldon
Mel Francis

Hang loose,
Double Vee

Thursday, March 09, 2006

On to something more interesting...

Vanessa here...

And no, I won't gross you out with further pictures of "My Left Foot," although, I have to say it looks a lot worse than it is. I managed to walk last night without a limp. Course, this morning, it hurt like blue-blazing hell...so...

Instead of talking about my foot, I'll talk about my...food! See, change one letter and you get a whole new blog topic.

I'd promised to share my jambalaya recipe with Pam and have been remiss to do so. (Been a little occupied with popping percocet.) But, I thought I'd share my Mardi Gras party recipes with you. Yeah, yeah...I know it's past Mardi Gras, but anytime is a great time to have some yummy food. Think of making this over the summer and serving it to a group of friends. It'll be tres impressive. (And Diana...yes, you can make this too!)

And the best thing about this recipe is it's a Weight Watchers recipe...so it's not so bad for you.

Here we go...

Jambalaya

1/2 pound skinless boneless chicken breast cut into chunks
1/2 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, small, chopped
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
2 celery stalks, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup long-grain white rice
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (College Inn is the best)
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 pound turkey kielbasa (or chorizo) cut into 1/4 inch slices

Makes 6 servings
325 calories
8 grams of fat
7 WW Points

Get your mise en place together...that's the French term for having all of your ingredients, bowls and utensils necessary for a dish’s preparation in place and ready to start cooking. Here's mine...


Sprinkle the chicken and shrimp with the Cajan seasoning. Heat the oil in the large nonstick deep skillet (I'm using a paella pan) over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is browned and the shrimp is opaque in the center - about 4 minutes.





Transfer chicken and shrimp to a bowl.

Add the onion, bell peppers, celery and garlic to the skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently until tender, about 8 minutes.



Stir in the rice, cook 1 minute. Add the broth, tomatoes and thyme. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the rice is tender - about 20 minutes.



Add the chicken, shrimp and kielbasa (or chorizo) and cook until heated through, about 3 miutes.



Serving size is about a cup and a half and it's waaaaaaay yummy!!!

Oh, and don't forget my King Cake! That took forever to make, but it was well worth the effort. And I found the hidden coin!



Next Mardi Gras, you'll have to come to my party! I promise not to break any more bones.

Hang loose,
Double Vee

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

My left foot...

Vanessa here...

Still hangin' on the couch. I've been working from home, which is cool because I don't miss out on any of the e-mail news and gossip, but I get to work without being interrupted.

Thanks for all the e-mails and concern over my left foot. And for all of you naysayers and disbelievers, well, all I have to say is take a look at my foot...Day Five:


Now do you believe me? As if the black, blue and yellow bruising isn't enough, I could seriously go for a pedicure. My poor foot. I even apologized to it in the shower today. William thought I was crazy in the bathroom talking to myself....no, just my foot. (Okay, that sounds worse.)

Griz and I are supposed to go on a Pub Crawl Friday night. I'm told there are going to be a lot of cute boys there. Don't know whether I should just suck it up and go and try to be cute and charming or if I should avoid it, for fear I'll break the other leg or something. I guess I'll go. Why not? Maybe someone adorable will offer me a ride home or something. That'd be nice.

Hobbling off to the kitchen to find something for dinner. We have left over spaghetti sauce, Egg Beaters, Super Pretzels, shoestring fries and left over Hurrican mix. What to make out of that?

Hang loose,
Double Vee

Monday, March 06, 2006

Just for the fun of it...

Vanessa here...

Still nursing the broken foot and staying at home hopped up on some good narcotics. Prescription ones, thank you very much.

Not very many coherent thoughts today. More like Vanessa's Percoceted Potpourri...

Here's a funny quiz to make you laugh.

Then there's this video that almost made my cry! (It'd be funnier if it weren't true.)

And, stolen from Diana P's blog, a little meme which was fun to do...

9 lasts:
last cigarette: college
last beverage: Diet Coke
last kiss: it’s been so long, I don’t remember last movie seen: Gone With the Wind on TNT last phone call: printing vendor for a brochure we’re doing last cd played: Mariah Carey’s new one last bubble bath: a week ago last time you cried: Thursday, when I broke my foot

8 have you evers:
have you ever dated one of your best friends: no
have you ever skinny dipped: no
have you ever kissed somebody and regretted it: Of course...beer goggles...
have you ever fallen in love: yes.
have you ever lost someone you loved: yes.
have you ever been depressed: hello, I’m female.
have you ever been drunk and thrown up: of course!

7 states you've been to:
1. Nevada
2. Virginia
3. Maryland
4. Massachusetts
5. Alabama
6. Texas
7. Vermont

6 things you've done today:
1. worked on marketing mass e-mail
2. ate an egg and cheese sammich from Au Bon Pain
3. had two Diet Cokes
4. showered, washed hair, brushed teeth
5. read up on Oscar news
6. rearranged the serenity garden on my desk

5 favorite things in no order:
1. surfing the net
2. trying out a new recipe
3. discovering a yummy (cheap) wine
4. flirting with a cute guy on the T
5. dimples on a guy

4 people you can tell [almost] anything to:
1. Griz
2. William
3. My sister, Victoria
4. My boss, Aislin

3 wishes:
1. meet a cute guy who likes me
2. go to San Francisco
3. pay off my student loan

2 things you want to do before you die:
1. go to Italy
2. meet someone famous

1 thing you regret:
1. That my parents are Republicans. = )

Let me know how you like the quiz, video and meme! Consider yourself tagged...or better yet, why not post your answers here in the comment section. It'll keep me entertained as I heal.

Hang loose,
Double Vee

Friday, March 03, 2006

Physiology 101...

Vanessa here...

Thanks for all the posts, e-mails and concerns over my broken foot. Much appreciated! Wow...you like me!

For a little more explanation...here's a Physiology 101 on the bones of the foot. There are 26 bones in your foot and believe it or not, when you break a small one, it doesn't take months to heal, rather weeks, depending on how strong your bones are.

Now, here's an illustration. See the dark spot? That's the done I broke.




















I reported yesterday that it was one of the metatarsals, but that was wrong. It was a phalanges. Yes...like Phoebe's alter ego, Regina Phalanges.

But you see how tiny it is. Who knew it could hurt like blue-blazing bullshit, though? My foot it purple and sooooo swollen. I'll never get a boyfriend looking like this.

So, I'm staying home, taking my Percocet and resting.

Thanks for the concerns...you guys are the best! Better than the horrible people on the T!

Hang loose and hobble,
Double Vee

Thursday, March 02, 2006

The $hit-rain continues to fall...

Vanessa here...

Unbelievable, folks...just... Un. Be. Lievable.

Guess who broke her freaking foot today?

Yeah...Vanessa "Grace" Virtue...that's who!

It wasn't my fault, though. So, I had to go downtown this morning before work to pick up some proofs at the ad agency. I get to Arlington Street and the escalator doesn't work. (What? I'm lazy!) I'm in the line to go up the stairs and people are in this terrible hurry, so I bound right along.

Then, I get up to the top and am heading to the surface.

There's someone behind me.

I feel like I'm being chased. I speed up.

Mr. Cell Phone Bastard is behind me, so I hold on to the railing and twist to get out of his way. He f*cking knocks into me, causing me to go off balance and...fall UP the steps.

Like...OUCH!!!

And the son of a bitch never stops!

Immediately, I knew something was wrong. I tried to take a step. Nothing. Another one. Ouch! I hobble up the two remaining stairs and stand there, bent over chanting, "oh, my God....oh, my God..."

This nice, young Asian woman stops and says, "Are you okay?"

I say, "No, I'm not."

Then she walks away.

HELLO!!!

As I'm bent over trying to figure out what to do and how to walk this (are you ready for this?) panhandler comes over and asks me for change!

I said, "I'm just in a little bit of pain here..."

Tool.

GOD...I love this city! Only in Boston would get friggin' panhandled as you're doubled over in pain. At least he didn't call me a "c*nt-face" like I've been called before. (Insert heavy sigh.)

I sit on the wall of the Arlington Street Church and call William at work. Twenty minutes later, he arrives to get me and we head to the hospital. They wheel me in immediately and the doctor takes one look at the swelling and says, "Yeah, that's broken."

Broken.

My foot.

Now, I'm in this lovely, fashionable (not!) walking cast that William lovingly refers to as "the elephant foot" and I have an even prettier hospital regulation cane.

And wasn't I just saying the other day that Griz is the poster child for Shit Happens? Hmmm...maybe I need to rethink this.

Cards, candies, flowers and balloons can be sent to me at my Cambridge home.

Hang loose,
Double Vee...the gimp

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Advice to Boston's panhandlers...

Vanessa here...

So, after living in Boston for a while and getting used to the locals and the different clans of people, the student population that ebbs and flows and the specific pockets of the city, I have to say, there is one group that could use a lot of help in crafting their schtick: the panhandlers.

Now, I've lived in DC where there are some seriously sad, poor people and I've been to New York where you're hustled in certain parts of the city. However, I've never experienced the amateurish and down-right hostile panhandling I've witnessed here in Boston.

Here's my advice to Boston panhandlers (all based on actual interactions)...
  1. When soliciting money from me, do not block my entrance into the T station, not moving and daring me to go around you.
  2. Please don't sit in front of a church and shake a Starbucks cup at me and call me a "mother f*cking c*nt-faced bitch" and expect me to ante up to you.
  3. Don't ask me for"any spare change, please..." and then, after I dig in my purse and drop in a handful of change you stand there and pick out the pennies and throw them on the ground with a disgusted look on your face.
  4. I beg of you not to go from car to car on the T screaming at the top of your lungs, "Ladies and gentleman, I ask that you open up your hearts and open up your wallets today to assist me." Dude...it sounds like you're about to rob us!
  5. I prefer that you don't say to me as I'm going into Wendy's, "Instead of going in there where you'll just get food that will make you fatter, give me some money." Oh, right...offend me. That's the way to get assistance.
  6. Don't pick up a stack of the free newspapers and try to sell them to people for twenty-five cents. Tacky, tacky, tacky.
  7. If I'm sitting there with my headphones on, eating my lunch and reading a book, please refrain from banging on my table to get my attention and ask me for money.
  8. It probably doesn't help your 'cause to sit in the train station with a sign that reads, "I have nothing. Please help out." While sitting there shuffling through your iPod?!?!?!
  9. Best not to spit in or near my general direction when requesting cash from me.
  10. I don't need you to compliment my hair or my shoes to get money, only to call me vulgarities when I pass you by.

Now, you probably think I'm a royal bitch for not helping people less fortunate than me. Let me make it clear that I don't carry cash as a general rule. But, I also donate to charities very heavily. I gave to the tsunami fun, as well as the Katrina efforts and a whole slew of animal organizations, Red Cross and HIV foundations.

It's just that these Boston panhandlers are simply vile, rude and way too damn pushy. If you just clean up your acts and follow my advice, you might rack in a lot more funds.

At least this guy's not bullshitting you...

Hope this helps.

Hang loose,
Double Vee

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