Friday, July 22, 2011

An evening with Jen Weiner....from a guest blogger's point of view

Amy Bromberg got to attend Jennifer Weiner's book signing in NYC on July 12th. She's here to tell us all about her experience. If you want to see what went on for yourself, check out the video of the live feed from that evening.

My Evening with Jennifer Weiner
by Amy Bromberg

Originally I had a scheduling conflict that was not going allow me to attend the signing. However, due to a last minute rescheduling I ended up being able to go. While I was getting ready to leave, I was looking for something in my night table drawer and low and behold what do I find? A $10 Barnes and Nobles gift certificate from two years ago! I ended up paying $13 and change for the book, as it was also marked down a bit from the list price. About a dollar less than the eBook! I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I was!

I got to Barnes and Noble in Union Square at 3:30 pm, with plenty of time to spare before 5:00 (in order to get good seats, I was advised to show up two hours early). I HAD to get a front row seat. I ended up browsing around Sephora, right next door to Barnes and Noble, to check out the latest beauty products to share and promote on my beauty blog.

I was SO excited when Jennifer came out. Here’s a picture of her taking last minute notes just a few seconds before she was introduced.

This was my second time meeting Jennifer. The previous time was at a panel, where Jennifer and Candace Bushnell talked to each other, about all different topics. At the end of the panel, in another room, everyone lined up to get their books signed. I felt bad for Candace because the majority of people were going up to Jennifer. This was shortly after "Best Friends Forever" was released.

She shared with us her time in LA working on all that goes into putting together a TV show. In October, Jennifer was in Paris when she received a call from the heads of the ABC Family network, asking if she would like to come out to LA to shoot a TV series. Of course she said yes.
She wrote a script called “The Great State of Georgia” a few years back. As we all know, this show became a reality where Jennifer is the co-creator and executive producer. The first thing that had to be done, upon arriving in LA, was to get a car. In Philadelphia, where she lives, she has a 2005 Honda Odyssey minivan. She really does not care about what kind of car she drives because she barely drives it. Hence when her co-producer, Kirk took her to his car dealer, Marty Weiner (spelled the same) Jennifer picked out a simple Cadillac station wagon. This was not good enough because in LA cars matter a lot, because you are always in them. She ended up getting a Lexus SUV, which the car dealer, said this is what all the actresses drive, with sort of pretensions of environmentalism drive, you can act like you care, and there’s room for stuff .

Jennifer talked about how casting works, and how all of the ladies who came to audition for the role of Aunt Honey, were 80s sitcom heroines, including Stephanie Powers, Francis Fisher, Jacque and Loni Anderson. She was star struck and was like “Oh my G-d, that’s Suzanne Somers”, and Kirk said "Please stop screaming, you’re just going to upset them." Then there’s the hiring of the people that go into putting a show together. When it came to hiring the writers, Jennifer was advised by her sister-in-law, who knows about the television industry, to not hire "yourself." (Meaning, someone who thinks the same way she does.) She has also learned a lot from the book “Bossypants” by Tina Fey.

I was the first person to ask a question during the Q and A session. I asked "Do you see any of your other books becoming movies?" Jennifer said there are two problems with this. First, concerning Hollywood, her books are not exactly comedies, and not exactly dramas...they are “cromedies”. And the other problem is the plus size aspect. They would have to staple a couple of Olsen twins together. Jennifer is trying to get a meeting with Melissa McCarthy from "Bridesmaids."

I also want to share a picture of Jennifer and me, as well as of the message she wrote in my book, which I had her dedicate to everyone at CLC!

To end things I would like to say I had an awesome time, but there were no cupcakes this year (like she had last year)....instead there were whoopie pies!

Amy Bromberg grew up in Rockaway, NJ and graduated from Montclair State University in events/meeting planning and the hospitality industry. She has been married to the love of her life since Labor day 2005, thanks to the wonders of JDate (which Jennifer Weiner fans in Minneapolis have never heard of). Her passions are beauty and skincare, chick lit, and listening to all kinds of music (except for rap). She's a huge dog lover and enjoys spending time with friends and family. Amy recently started a beauty blog, The Beauty Call, which she would love for everyone to check out. You can follow her on Twitter.

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