Fighting the Green-Eyed Monster…Or Not

by Meryl Evans | Category: Books, Meryl's Notes Blog, Writing 8 comments

You Can't Drink All Day If You Don't Start in the MorningWelcome to meryl’s notes blog (this here place you’re lookin’ at) in Plano, Texas (OK, the blog doesn’t live on a server in my house — but that’s where you’ll find me… in Plano, not in the server). We’re honored to be a stop in Celia Rivenbark’s WOW! Women On Writing Blog tour. Here’s a bit about fellow southerner Celia… Yes, Texas counts as the South not the West! (Stay tuned in this long post if ya wanna win this book!)

About Celia Rivenbark

Celia Rivenbark dishes essays about the old south, the new south, and everything in between in her fifth book You Can’t Drink All Day If You Don’t Start in the Morning. In addition to a collection of essays so funny you’ll shoot co’cola out of your nose, Celia gives readers a treasure trove of Southern recipes and the hilarious stories behind them.

For eight years Celia wrote for her hometown paper, the Wallace, NC Enterprise. She covered everything from weddings to funky fruit to dead bodies (sometimes all in the same day). But the big city beckoned so Celia packed her bags and headed to Wilmington, NC and the Morning Star. More weddings but eventually she achieved every Southern girl’s dream. She was paid to be a smart ass (a.k.a. write a humor column).

Along the way she found herself a husband (the sports writer, of course–they are the cutest guys at the paper!), a beautiful baby daughter and a gig as a stay-at-home mom. After her 3,000th diaper change, Celia starting writing a humor column for the Sun News in Myrtle Beach, SC. After all, what’s funnier than 3000 dirty diapers? Laugh along with Celia on her WOW Blog Tour–dates are listed at www.wow-womenonwriting.com/blog.html. Visit Celia at www.celiarivenbark.com.

This gal is funny. Put down your drink unless you don’t mind that liquid in the nose thing. Here she talks about the green-eyed monster. Oh my goodness. I’ve met that thing a few times myself and it ain’t purty, but I shush it and play nice. I do, too! Anyhoo… All yours, Celia… No, please leave the server there and start typin’. 🙂

Fighting the Green-Eyed Monster…Or Not by Celia Rivenbark

I’ve always wanted to be one of those classy people who heaps genuine praise on my published friends. I want to gush and purely ooze heartfelt wishes that their Amazon ranking never rises above 1,000. Low is good in Amazonland, you know.

I want to be that person but I’m not very good at it. Because, the horrible truth is that I am painfully, shockingly, horrifically jealous when a writer-friend does better than me.

Which happens a lot since you ask.

Sometimes, though, I try to do the right thing. Listen up.

A couple of years ago, I was attending the Southern Independent Booksellers Association convention in Orlando. About 15 of us author types were doing what amounted to speed-dating. We’d already speed-eaten a couple of tiny ham and cheese on yeast roll thingies before being told to work the crowd, spending 10 minutes at each table, charming bookstore owners from across the Southeast.

All the other authors were familiar to me. We’d traveled in the same circles more than once. It was not, to use a cliché that I just love for no real reason, our first rodeo.

But there was a shy, quiet fellow at our authors’ table. As we wolfed our mini-subs and got ready to rumble, I decided it was my Christian duty to drag him into the conversation. He barely made eye contact. Poor lil fella, I thought. He’s overwhelmed by all of us big-shot authors. Clearly he was a convention virgin.

Is it enough to say that I talked the poor man’s ears off, sharing my sorta-vast knowledge of all things regional book tour? Is it enough to say that he listened quietly and politely even, at one point, smiling a bit?

Is it enough to say that all of a sudden the convention chair walked up and began to talk to the poor soul, earnestly complimenting him on his Pulitzer AND his National Book Award?

Oh. Let me just take my impossibly dumb ass and lumber across the room to charm the book-buyers. Who by now were all atwitter about having such a distinguished guest in their midst.

I’m not being small when I say I can’t remember his name. They say the mind forgets truly intense pain.

Since then, I’ve chatted up David Sedaris and John Updike. And, no, I didn’t ask Updike to detail my car or mistake Sedaris for a hungry drifter and offer to buy him a Hardees Thickburger, which, let’s be honest, he really looks like he could use. Bless his heart.

Three years ago, my book made it to the final five in a national humor contest. Sedaris won. Funny, skinny bastard.

Ditto another book a couple of years later. Oh? What’s this? You really think Jon Stewart and gazillion-member “staff” is more deserving? Okie-freakin’-dokie.

This summer, my most recent book made it to the final three for the best nonfiction book of the year in the South. But what’s this? Another Pulitzer winner beat the snot out of me to take that one. I HATE HIM.

Oh, just joshing. I’m sure he’s a delightful fellow and there is absolutely no truth to the rumor that he is covered entirely in scales below the neck.

Yes, I want to be magnanimous, gracious and giving but, as you can see, it’s not working out too well. If they gave out Pulitzers for simply being a foul-mouthed, small-minded egotist, I’d win. Nah, who am I kidding? Kanye would beat me on that one.

Meryl here again. Good stuff, eh? You can get more goodies like this from You Can’t Drink All Day If You Don’t Start in the Morning. Ah, good thing I always have a cuppa Joe first thing in the morning… oh wait, that’s not the kind of drinking she’s talking about, is she? Back to bidness, you wanna win my copy of this book, dontcha? Yes, the things I do for you. Oh, it’s a great book (here’s the book review for all to see) not some lousy one I’m willing to dump on someone else.

Leave a 50+ word comment in this post by 11:59pm on October 13. That’s all ya gotta do to be entered to win this book. Share a story or whatever strikes ya. The objective and robotic Random.org will pick the winner.

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8 comments

  • Posted by George Angus