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Posts tagged ‘Entertainment’

Leanne Shirtliffe: Don’t Lick The Minivan (and other things I never thought I’d say to my kids)

moving the podcast – interview from May 22, 2013


Leanne Shirtliffe is a busy woman! And still she took a big chunk of time out of her evening to sit down and talk to me about her new book Don’t Lick The Minivan!

After we figured out how to work the Google Hangout thing, we talked about her writing process, depression and raising twins. And she gives us a special sneak peek at her upcoming projects!

Leanne Square

0:00 ~ “I guess I’m an author” (meet Leanne)Book Cover
8:00 ~ the writing process
18:00 ~ sappy files, depression and found humor
28:00 ~ a husband, twins and lazy parenting
40:00 ~ what’s next for Leanne

Connect with Leanne

on her blog
on Twitter @LShirtliffe
on Facebook 

Buy the book!

Also!! Renee Schuls-Jacobson is giving away a copy of Leanne’s book. Hop over to read her review and find out how to enter!
Hint: tell her something naughty.
You’ll stay to read the other stories, trust me.

Items of Interest:

Writing Lessons: On Characterization, with Leanne Shirtliffe (more about changing how her husband was originally portrayed)
Don’t throw your pee out the window!
(my review of my review of Don’t Lick The Minivan)
Leanne Shirtliffe answers her fan mail (a bit of video cut from our interview)

Cassettes and Karaoke

I am moving soon, so I’m going through all the bits and pieces of life I’ve gathered in the last…well, since childhood. I am a sentimental pack-rat, and though I’ve been systematically decluttering my home for the last few years, I still have a lot, lot, lot of old stuff.

One of the things I’ve brought with me through move after move are masses of old cassette tapes. I’ve already gone through all the store-bought music, tapes we wore out in high school and the ones I’d sing with at the top of my lungs as I rode through the country in college. Today I started working on the make-your-owns, all the mixed tapes, and songs I recorded off the radio when I was a pre-teen, and the albums I transferred to tape way back when cassettes were the next new best thing ever.

I also unearthed, in these stacks of tapes, some of those SuperStar deals, you know, where you’d sing in a little booth and they’d give you a cassette of the recording. Just like live karaoke now, some people were super, duper awesome. And others weren’t. But it was fun to listen no matter which type they played on the loudspeaker.

I’ve always loved to sing. If I could have one single wish for my life, for something I would change about myself, it would be to have a beautiful singing voice. Even if no one else ever heard it. I just feel so much joy when I’m singing. Except that I can’t sing, lol. It’s not quite as joyful a noise, when it’s mostly just noise.

My voice has never been strong, but I could at least carry a tune when I was younger. Mostly. I was always in chorus throughout my school years, and I sang solos and duets in a couple of concerts. I even had a solo in the senior musical. An uncomfortably high-pitched, shaky solo, but I did it, dammit. Overall, though, my voice was best suited for the chorus – where it could blend in!

And then after I stopped singing (and smoked for years), my voice got worse and worse. I pretty much can’t even hit the right notes anymore. Ah, well…what are you gonna do? Keep my voice in the shower, I guess.

In any case, it was fun to hear those old SuperStar cassettes again, probably for the first time since that summer. But kind of painful, too – to my ears! And my pride, lol. I was pretty horrid and could have used a chorus in that booth with me. Unfortunately, there were several cassettes to go through. The amusement park where I worked had an employee party one night that included free recordings. My friend Cybille and I worked the studio for the party, but managed to fit in time to do a few recordings ourselves. Maybe too much time, haha.

But it was super fun, and listening made me remember all those fun times. And remembering was good.

I’m even going to share the fun, if you want to have a laugh yourself:

If you notice in the picture, it says “better”, and believe me that was the better version. And that haircut stuff is from an Eddie Murphy Buckwheat sketch on SNL. Good times, haha.




Mama Said There’d Be Days Like This

Grown-ups have days like this too!

To quote from the awesome Galaxy Quest, “Never give up! Never surrender!”



Movie Quote Monday – Die Hard

Not everyone considers Die Hard a Christmas movie, but I do.

For one thing, it takes place at a Christmas party. There’s even a tree…that falls over after the roof explodes. But still, Christmas.

And the hero, John McClane writes “Now I have a machine gun, HO HO HO” on a dead guy’s shirt. So Santa! Christmas!

And throughout the film, there’s all kinds of talk about miracles…

Hans Gruber: It’s Christmas, Theo. It’s the time of miracles, so be of good cheer.

Ok, so those are the bad guys.

But hey, that’s okay too, because even the bad guys believe in the magic of Christmas!


Do you think Die Hard is a Christmas movie?

Or are you a die hard Christmas purist – it’s only a Christmas movie if the movie is about Christmas?

Do you believe that Christmas is a time of miracles?

Are you a good guy or a bad guy?