2014: Bring it on!

happy_new_year_champagne_stemware_2014What a year 2013 has been! From turning 40 to our publishing deal with Atria/Simon & Schuster to getting through all five seasons of Breaking Bad, it's been a year of big things. And as I bid 2013 adieu tonight while watching the ball drop in Time's Square from the comfort of my couch, I'll be thinking about the things--big and small--that I'm most excited about in 2014.

Oh and because we had to do ONE LAST GIVEAWAY this year, leave a comment about what you're excited to do in 2014 and be entered to win a bundle of surprise books! We'll choose the winner on Sunday, January 6th after 12pm PST.  Happy New Year, everyone!

1. Juicing!

Yes, you read that right. I'm that wife who asked for and is ecstatic she received an appliance for Christmas. A good friend said to me, of course you did, you're forty and you're a mom! Welcome to the club.  The hubs and I are so overly-excited about the endless possibilities this juicer will bring us you'd think we'd just won the lottery. I'll definitely be reporting back on the kale, carrot and ginger concoction I plan to try first.

2. More binge watching

We just watched the finale of Breaking Bad two nights ago. (So. Effing. Brilliant.) And I may never watch TV the same way again. In fact, I know I won't. Not having to wait a week to find out what Walter White was going to do next was one of the best things that has ever happened to this highly impatient person.  The only question is what TV show should I binge on next? Recommendations, please!

3. More blowouts

I know Liz and I have talked incessantly about and posted, er, a lot of pictures of our obsession with having someone else blow dry our hair--DryBar, oh how we love you! This blowdry thing *might* have even ended up in the book we're currently writing: The Status of All Things. I realize I'm not J-Lo and probably don't need as many blowouts as I think I do (you know, like 3-4 a week), but if any of you know a way for me to wash my hair as little as possible while still making it look great, please let me know! I smell a dry shampoo obsession coming in 2014.

4. Changes to our website

2014 will mark the 5th anniversary of this site. That's cray-cray! Oops, forgot that's one of the 7 things I'm supposed to stop saying because I'm over forty.  Anyway, be on the lookout for a redesign as well as new features! And important news about our new domain name! Stay tuned...

5. Getting published

This is so big that Liz and I don't have the words for it yet. In fact, we probably never will. All we can continue to say is we're grateful to be living our dream and so happy to have your support and  that you put up with our shameless plugs. Like these:

See you in 2014!


Diary of a Debut: Revision Hell

Liz and Lisa writing revisonsThere have been A LOT of exciting things going on around here lately. Did you hear?  Simon & Schuster bought TWO more books from us!  Yep, that means they are stuck with us for THREE novels. (We love a publisher that isn't afraid to commit...)  So, in addition to Your Perfect Life, which follows two childhood best friends who switch bodies at their 20 year high school reunion (June 2014), we are currently revising Famous Last Words, about a celebrity who kills herself and the tabloid reporter who's blamed for sending her over the edge. And then we'll be digging in on book #3! (Details coming soon. In fact, if you haven't already, you should subscribe to our newsletter to make sure you're getting the latest news.)

Bottom line? We are incredibly thankful and still wondering how the hell we got here! But as excited as we are that S&S is going to publish Famous Last Words, there's one thing we that we aren't so excited about.  The part of the process that strikes fear into our hearts:


We kind of hate on them. And each other while we work on them.

Well, hate is probably too strong of a word.  Let's just say we'd rather get a full body wax or watch a Teen Mom marathon while getting said wax.

We've mentioned before that our editor and agent are uh-mazing.  But with an amazing editor and agent comes incredibly thoughtful and smart notes that you NEED TO LISTEN TO because those notes will take your book to the next level.  Many notes that have us thinking, duh, why didn't WE think of that or that or that? *bangs palm onto forehead*

Thankfully, after writing together for 5 years, we've finally reached the point where we no longer argue for hours over one word or whether or not a character should wear a trucker hat.  So, this time around, we feel we've honed our editing skills (and attitudes!) and have been volleying the manuscript back and forth like Venus and Serena at the US Open. In fact, we *think* we see the light at the end of the tunnel. Thank GAWD!

And we've  learned a few new things about each other, too. Yep, that's right, after over 25+ years of friendship, there are STILL things to discover! You see, Lisa can be bit OCD and Liz a bit ADD.  Put those together and what do you get?  A very interesting editing experience.

Oh, and before we forget, leave a comment on this post and you'll be entered to win a copy of Anita Hughes' Lake Como!



What Lisa says: Wow! Nice job on these edits!  Your descriptions were awesome!

What Lisa means: I *might* have taken out a *few* things from your last edit and turned the boyfriend into a flea-market shopping hipster. Oh, and I may have said the leather couch you put in his home was "cliche."


What Lisa says: When you get into the manuscript, you'll see I have a few "questions."

What Lisa means: I am questioning EVERYTHING. No stone will go unturned!


What Liz says: I MUST have the manuscript by Saturday morning at 6am--not a moment later! I'm going to work on it ALL day.

What Liz means: I'm going to sleep in, then post all my Hawaii pics on Facebook, play Candy Crush, try out a new recipe and then watch that new episode of Catfish before cramming ten hours of editing into two. But no worries!


What Liz says: Oh, ya, I totally read through that, it was genius!

What Liz means:  I skimmed it over a thirty second period while posting pictures to Instagram. I can't remember exactly what I read, but it seemed fine! Let's move on to the next thing!

As always, thanks for taking this journey with us. We couldn't do it without your support! Leave a comment below about your own writing experience or anything that's on your mind and be entered to win a copy of Anita Hughes' Lake Como! We'll choose the winner after 8am on September 2nd.




Diary of a Debut: 5 reasons to have a writing retreat in Vegas

Vagas_nightWe're still pinching ourselves that our book is going to be published by Simon & Schuster/Atria Books next year. As Lisa's two-year-old would say, O-M-G. As Lisa and Liz would say O-M-EFFING-G. Did we mention EFFING? So there we were. Sin City. Lisa with her Beats by Dr. Dre hugging her ears and Liz with her shiny new Macbook air polished and ready to go. Lisa with her never-before-listened-to-but-oh-so-perfectly-planned-writing retreat-playlist filled with umpteen songs to inspire her but who would only end up playing Undermine from Nashville(SUCH a great show!) on repeat for thirty-six hours instead. Liz with her gossip magazines scattered about for "research." (Stars without make up can be very motivating!) Both trying not to think about the dinging of the slot machines thirty-seven stories below.

The screams of people winning at the craps table. The multiple bars with cocktails at the ready. You see, we might now have a dream agent. We might now have a dream publishing deal. We might now be living the dream of writing our second novel. But...

We are also moms. Moms who NEVER GET OUT.  Moms who, after seeing multiple bachelor parties streaming through the lobby as they checked into Mandalay Bay, had to exercise MAJUH will power  in order to stay in their room and meet their word count goal. And you know what? Not only did we meet that number (and then some!), but we'd do it all over again (well maybe not the sharing a bed part--more on that in a minute!).

And so begins our Diary of a Debut--the online journal chronicling our road to publication. We'll also be snapping photos along the way and sharing them on Instagram. (Follow us there: LisaandLiz.)

And of course we have a GIVEAWAY. Leave a comment and be entered to win a bundle of 15 *surprise* books! We'll select the winner this Sunday, January 20th after 3pm PST.



1. You could get randomly upgraded to gigantic suite so large that you wonder if Mike Tyson, a tiger--or God willing--Bradley Cooper-- will round the corner at any moment. And while neither of us woke up with a missing tooth or a baby in our safe, we did have quite an adventure. Dedicated to our craft and feeling palpable pressure to perform, we spent the entire time in one small corner of the suite. Why? Because that's where the only desk was located, of course. Apparently, most people don't come to Vegas to write. The 12 flat screen TVs unwatched, the second and third bathroom unused, the minibar *sniffle* untouched, we pecked away at novel number two. (Check out the view from our room in the pic!)

What Lisa learned: JUST SAY NO when you get upgraded to a palatial room with a steamer shower (gotta get me one of those!) and an incredible view of the Vegas strip--only before seen through the eyes of a doe-eyed girl vying for a rose on The Bachelor, when you are told that there is only ONE bed that you're going to have to SHARE.  Lisa, with her ear plugs secured tightly is ready to get her first full-night of uninterrupted sleep in months was awakened every hour by Liz, who was tossing and turning because she couldn't sleep through the noise of the elevator shaft nearby and drunk ass people stumbling back to their rooms. #getLizearplugsforchristmas

2. When you need to take a "break" the people watching alone is enough to inspire the next three books Let's just say being holed up in a room--albeit 2500 square feet large--can get claustrophobic. (Bradley Cooper still hasn't shown up! And this has nothing to do with anything, but did you know he's fluent in French?  ) The walls start to close in when the pressure to write that book your aforementioned dream editor and agent are hopefully going to swoon over, when that pressure is so overwhelming you seriously consider chucking that MacBook Air into the jacuzzi tub, heading down to the casino and ordering a bloody mary (extra spicy, please!) instead. But you don't--mostly because one of you (ahem, Lisa) is a nazi and has imposed a strict rule: we cannot even breathe in the stale smoky air of the casino until we've met our word count goal. But because she's not a totally meanie and, at one point, suffered from a case of writer's block so bad she wondered if she had in fact switched bodies with a qualified author while writing THE TOAST, gives in and allows you to take a break and stroll through the casino. Stroll.

Not stop. Not sit. Not order. And so we head downstairs in our sweat pants (because if you wear something cute who knows what could happen?) but immediately curse ourselves when the first encounter we have  is with two smokin' hot guys who also happen to write for Esquire magazine. And despite the sweats--or maybe in spite of them--we still get our flirt on because maybe they'll write about our book! #flirtinginsweatpantssucks

40-is-the-new-20-t-shirt3. Getting carded can inspire 5,000 words Before you fall into (a shared!) bed after a long day of writing, you might just be inspired by the encounter with the Esquire guys and change into something sassy. And you might just make your way back down to the bar for a nightcap (or two). And when you do, you might nearly fall off your bar stool when you are asked for an ID. Did we even bring them down with us? we bemused, rifling through our purses.  Turns out, getting carded can be quite inspirational! After celebrating plowing through the first day, only breaking for Starbucks, we wrote 5,000 more words. (Who cares that the bartender was probably required to inspect the drivers license of anyone who appeared to be under 50.) #we'lltakeit


RoomServicebreadbasket-1-of-1-14. Room service never tasted so good--not In an unexpected twist, the gluten gestapo (a.k.a. Liz) joined us on our writing retreat. Apparently, just before heading to Vegas, she decided that she was no longer going to consume wheat. And neither was anyone around her! Cut to the first time we order room service. Two cobb salads, please. The salads arrive, looking delicious. But so did the bag of warm bread that came with them. Lisa reaches out to grab one, and her hand is instantly batted away. "You can go ahead and take that," Liz says to the server. Lisa watches the bread basket leave, tears in her eyes. They couldn't drink. They couldn't gamble. And now they couldn't even have bread? And don't even get her started on the gluten free waffles that were consumed. Good thing we are in Vegas and the food choices are endless. There may or may not have been a secret hamburger WITH THE BUN consumed when Liz wasn't looking. #wheatbellyisunattractive


5. After you meet your writing goal, dancing like you're 21 again never felt so good.  The reason we were in Vegas was not just for a writing retreat. Liz was also hosting her hubs 40th birthday party there later that week.  So we decided to arrive early, write, then drink our faces off! And party we did. Let's just say we cleared out the dance floor, (and not in a good way) our arms flailing, sipping from our drinks, dancing to remixed versions of songs by MC Hammer and Ace of Base that the horrified twenty-somethings looking on had never heard of. No matter that we were celebrating like we'd finished our second book, not just made a dent in it! #anyreasontohaveacocktail

As far as what happened next? I think the sign proudly displayed on the inside of Lisa's Spirit Airlines plane said it best: Vacuum sealed to hold all Vegas Secrets

THANK YOU for taking this journey with us. We couldn't do it with out you! Here's to the next 55,000 words!

xoxo, Liz & Lisa



Sarah Pekkanen's Beginning Again

Y'all know how much we love Sarah P, right? And not just because she was the very first author we interviewed on CLIND. We just love her insightful, sweet and heartfelt novels, not to mention the fact that's she's a ridiculously kind and generous person.  And know what else we love?  The fabulous novellas that she gives us in-between--because girlfrin' knows we can't wait until 2013 for The Best of Us! (Which, btw, is her best yet, you are going to L-O-V-E it!)

So obviously, we're totally stoked that her latest novella, Beginning Again is out TOMORROW.

Here's the scoop on it: Things have always gone perfectly for Corrine Brown—until now. She’s separated from her husband of less than three years, and going solo to her baby sister’s wedding in Minnesota. As happy as she is for Ilsa, the weekend is long and lonely, and she’s eager to get back to her life in LA…until she realizes that her life, as she’s known it, is over. Forced to reinvent herself just when she thought was finally settled, Corrine soon learns that sometimes, the most rewarding adventures are the ones that we least expect.

A continuation of the original short e-stories All Is Bright and Love, Accidentally, but told from the point of view of a new character, Beginning Again is a heartfelt take on what happens when one happily ever after fades—and another begins.

Sounds juicy!  And the best part?  IT'S ONLY .99! Yes, you heard that right.  Less than that big ol' bag of popcorn your kids always bug you for while at Target!  So go grab a copy.  Now.  Don't make us beg--we promise you'll be happy you did.

xoxo, L&L


Amy Hill Hearth's 5 Things I'd Tell The Teen Me

Our guest today: Amy Hill Hearth Why we love her: Her writing is delightful!

Her latest: Miss Dreamsville and the Collier County Women's Literary Society

The scoop: Eighty-year-old Dora, the narrator of a story that began a half century earlier, is bonding with an unlikely set of friends, including Jackie Hart, a restless middle-aged wife and mother from Boston, who gets into all sorts of trouble when her family moves to a small, sleepy town in Collier County, Florida, circa 1962.

With humor and insight the novel chronicles the awkward North-South cultural divide as Jackie, this hapless but charming “Yankee,” looks for some excitement in her life by accepting an opportunity to host a local radio show where she creates a mysterious, late-night persona, “Miss Dreamsville,” and by launching a reading group—the Collier County Women’s Literary Society—thus sending the conservative and racially segregated town into uproar. The only townspeople who venture to join are regarded as outsiders at best—a young gay man, a divorced woman, a poet, and a young black woman who dreams of going to college.

Inspired by a real person, Miss Dreamsville and the Collier County Women’s Literary Society will touch the heart of anyone and everyone who has ever felt like an outsider longing to fit in.

Our thoughts: We think you'll love this heartwarming tale.

Giveaway: THREE Copies!  Leave a comment and you'll be entered to win!  We'll choose the winners on Sunday, October 21st after 6pm PST.

Fun fact: Amy has written several very interesting non-fiction books, check them out!

Where to read more about Amy: Her website, or Facebook.


1.     Being an outsider or outcast can make you strong.

2.     Ask more questions. Don’t accept lame answers.

3.     Be kind to everyone, but never, ever allow yourself to become a doormat.

4.     Don’t wear your trendiest clothes and wildest hairdo for your class picture.

5.     Seek advice from older people. They really do know more than you do (most of the time).

Thanks Amy! xoxo, L&L

BIG book deal news & BIG giveaway

Are y'all sitting down? We've got news.  BIG news. Our manuscript, The Toast, sold to Greer Hendricks at Atria Books! *jumps up and down and pees pants a little bit*

We signed with the fabulous Elisabeth Weed of Weed Literary last week (she reps a ton of our fave authors!) and received the a-mazing news that our book sold just days later.  In fact, our heads are still spinning as we write this because we've been girl crushin' like crazy on both Greer and Elisabeth for years!  Needless to say, we are excited, thankful and scared shitless all the same time. (To put it in perspective, all we can manage to say to each other all day is some combination of OMG, holy sh*t and WTF?)

The Toast will hit bookshelves in early 2014.  It's about two childhood best friends who wake up the morning after their 20th high school reunion to discover they've switched bodies and ultimately realize that sometimes it takes living someone else's life to appreciate your own. (And just in case you were wondering, it's NOT autobiographical!)

Ok, so get prepared y'all because we're about to get our sap on.

Thank you.  Yes, you. Each and every one of you who are reading this post.  It's because of your sassy comments, your kind words and your support-- not only of us but of Chick Lit Is Not Dead--that we are here today.  Whenever we got really down, all we had to do was pop over here and see how much y'all still LOVED reading good books written by women.  And it was that love that helped us keep our chins up all this time.

So, to show you how much we appreciate your awesomeness, (and because we are complete giveaway WHORES), we are giving away not one, but two HUGEASS STACKS OF BOOKS.  See for yourself. They're not just big, they're HUGEASS.  You know the drill: leave a comment and we'll enter you to win. We'll choose the winners on Sunday, October 7th after 6pm PST.

Now we're off to do the only thing you can do when you sell your first book: GO TO LAS VEGAS! We'll be the ones drinking champagne at the blackjack tables and, well, everywhere, sucking in our stomachs at the pool cabana and hanging out with Carrot Top. (Long Story!)

xoxo, L&L




Five Things Liz & Lisa didn't know about...Sarah Pekkanen

We've made no secret about the fact that we LOVE Sarah Pekkanen. Her debut novel, The Opposite of Me, will be published by Washington Square Press, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, next week.  But before it hits bookstores, she's holding a Sarah Spike Day with a big raffle for everyone who pre-orders her book this Wednesday, March 3. So, what's in it for you if you pre-order The Opposite of Me on 3/3?  Here are the raffle prizes:

  • A gift bag containing five hot new Simon & Schuster releases
  • Five high-end, cotton t-shirts from Heart Threads Clothing ( You pick the size, color and secret message printed on the inside of your shirt and worn close to your heart. Five winners!
  • A 30-minute phone consultation with Sarah, in which she'll explain, step-by-step, how she got signed by a literary agent and publisher. This will include an editorial critique of your manuscript of up to 40 pages. If you're not interested in writing a novel, you can gift this prize to anyone you choose.
  • This last prize is one a character in her book, Lindsey, would especially like:  A $35 gift certificate to MAC cosmetics (Lindsey is a fan of their eyeshadow) and a gorgeous red bustier from Affinitas Intimates. It would probably look best on a woman, but we won't pass judgment if the guys want to win it!

If you want to be entered in Sarah's raffle, here’s what to do:

1) On Wednesday, March 3, order The Opposite of Me online from places including, or If you buy more than one book, you’ll get more than one chance to win.

2) Email your receipt within 24 hours to this address: and make sure to put CONTEST as the subject line.

3) Wait to hear if you are one of the winners!

Now for the even bigger news…#1 New York Times bestseller Jennifer Weiner, author of seven blockbusters including Best Friends Forever and In Her Shoes, which was made into a major motion picture staring Cameron Diaz, is supporting The Opposite of Me by holding an extraordinary giveaway of her own! Please visit Jen’s website for the details of how she is giving a free, autographed copy of one of her books to everyone who orders The Opposite of Me!

Remember, these are separate giveaways. So you can enter Sarah's raffle, or Jen’s giveaway, or both! The possibilities are endless!

If you’d like to read the first chapter of The Opposite of Me, a Redbook magazine book club pick, it’s on Sarah's website, And trust us, it's as good as everyone is saying it is!

And just when you thought things couldn't get ANY better, we also asked Sarah to share five things we didn't know about her.  And, if it's even possible, we think we love her even more after reading them!  We think you will too.

Five Things Liz and Lisa didn't know about...Sarah Pekkanen!

1. I was rejected as a contestant on Wheel of Fortune, despite the fact that I have a Rain Man-like ability to solve puzzles with no letters showing. I’m still bitter; I really wanted to spin that wheel!

2. I wrote part of The Opposite of Me at Chuck E. Cheese. I’ve got three young boys, so I bring my laptop with me wherever I go and squeeze in snatches of writing time. I’ve got this system down at Chuck E.’s: I keep all the tokens on my table and my kids have to come to me every time they need one. So they’re checking in every couple of minutes, and in the meantime, I’m pecking away on my laptop.

3. The Opposite of Me isn’t even the slightest bit autobiographical. The first thing people ask me when they hear the premise of my book – it’s the story of twin sisters who are complete opposites – is whether I’m a twin. Nope; I don’t even have a sister. But I've always been intrigued by the complex relationships my friends have with their sisters, so I tried to make the relationship of my main characters, Lindsey and Alex, as juicy and competitive and loving and tangled as possible. I've heard about twins who are so close that they create their own language, and can feel each other's pain from miles away - but I wondered what would happen to twins who were completely different. What if two sisters had nothing in common, but were constantly being compared? How would that shape their relationship?

4. I started writing books when I was a kid. A few years ago, my niece discovered an old letter I’d written on Raggedy Ann stationery asking a publisher when my book, titled, “Miscellaneous Tales and Poems” would be published. I carry that letter with me every time I go to New York to meet with my publisher, as a reminder that dreams really do come true. Well, at least some dreams. Brad Pitt has yet to show up on my doorstep wearing nothing but a toolbelt and a knowing smile and asking me if I need anything fixed. So maybe it’s only G-rated dreams that come true.

5. When I'm not writing, I love to run marathons and study Latin and organize the clothes in my closet by color and season. Naw, not really. I watch reality TV and eat too much chocolate and worry if my butt looks fat in my favorite jeans.

To read more about Sarah, head on over to or become a fan on Facebook.

xoxo, Liz & Lisa