An HGTV show called Red, Hot and Green remodeled my bathroom when I lived in L.A. The big “reveal” was exciting and horrifying all at the same time. What if it was ugly? What if I didn’t like it? How would I mask my disappointment in front of the cameras, and more importantly, in front of the smokin’ hot host of the show, Carter Oosterhouse? (See photo to the left.)
Okay, so that isn’t Carter Oosterhouse, but what was the point of spending 20 years in L.A. if I can’t drop a name here and there, like…BRYAN CRANSTON?!!!! (Coolest guy on earth.)
Carter Oosterhouse and Pam
THIS is smokin’ hot Carter Oosterhouse and me. Also tres cool. And oh, so handy.
My book cover reveal is making me a little anxious, like I was back in L.A. when they transformed my bathroom and turned the camera my way. What if you don’t like the cover? What if you think it’s stupid? What if people don’t get it? I know I’m not supposed to take any of this personally, so I will tell you that graphic designer Deborah Tyszka is 100% to blame, and as Charlotte would say, “It’s not my fault.”
Ms. Tyszka worked tirelessly to give us a cover that conveyed the quirkiness of Charlotte’s character—her awkwardness, but with charm. When Ford model Bella B showed up with a pink Band-Aid on her knee, Deb Tyszka jumped on it. “Keep the Band-Aid,” she told Bella as she was about to remove it. “It’s totally Charlotte!”
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Deb introduced subtle touches of mysticism into the book’s design. Those symbols in the background (and in white beside the words Feng Shui) are the Chinese symbols for wind and water, which is the literal translation of Feng Shui.
I love the cover—I really do, but the inside front flap of the hardcover dust jacket is my absolute favorite part of the design. What Deb did with the fonts and the placement and the schmutz! I laughed so hard that I tinkled just a little when I first saw it. She’s a genius.
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Writing is a quiet occupation. On the days when I’m writing I am alone, living in my head, and there is no outside world. Everyone is different, but that’s pretty much my M.O. In my wildest dreams I never would have imagined the massive team of people involved in getting a book off the ground once it is in the process of being published. If I were to list them it would look like the closing credits of Titanic.
I’m learning more and more every day about this process, and I appreciate more and more the hard work of everyone involved. If it takes a village to raise a child, it takes an army to produce a book.
So this is it. The cover. My baby. I hope it’s tantalizing enough that you want to read the book.
Have an auspicious day!
And if you want to see Carter’s handiwork in my bathroom, check out this clip from the HGTV show Red, Hot and Green.
Charlotte Nightingale, the central character in Pamela Ferderbar’s charming debut novel Feng Shui and Charlotte Nightingale, has serious shar chi (“poison luck”) in the realm of feng shui. From her dead-end job as a cashier at a shady auto repair shop to her mendacious boyfriend and run-down L.A. apartment sans working plumbing, Charlotte thinks her luck can’t get any worse. But it can, and it does after she attends a family dinner in honor of her younger sister’s recent engagement to a successful plastic surgeon, only to have the evening go horribly and unexpectedly awry. Providentially, however, she has Kwan, a Chinese take-out deliveryman, in her corner, surreptitiously rearranging her home in proper feng shui style in the hopes of improving her ill-fated karma. Told with witty humor and genuine candor, Feng Shui and Charlotte Nightingale is a lighthearted and captivating tale of fulfillment and redemption.
Ferderbar was born and raised in Wisconsin. She recently returned to the state to live full-time after a hiatus on the West Coast. Ferderbar will discuss her book Feng Shui and Charlotte Nightingale at Boswell Book Co. at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 16.
Boswell Book Co.
2559 N. Downer Ave.