…Worth That Thousand Words…

Quote of the Day: “If it’s not pretty, it doesn’t matter…” — Tim Gunn, Project Runway

Ladies and Gentlemen, I introduce to you the cover of the paperback of my book HUNG. The paperback will be released all over the country on September 12, 2006. If you didn’t have a chance to pick it up in hardcover, now’s your chance to get it. You can pre-order it HERE at Amazon.com and get it mailed to you when released, if you’d like. If you have read it in hardcover—and you liked it—tell your friends!!!

I know some of you are thinking, Where’s the hunky dude’s chest from the hardcover edition of HUNG? He’s gone, back to wherever those sorta dudes go when their moment in the sun is over…No, just kidding. There was a decision made to change the cover for many reasons. Paperback covers always get changed, always look a tad different from the hardcover version, but in this case, it had a little something to do with how the book was getting perceived, how it was being considered, how it sold. It actually sold well in hardcover (thanks to all you peeps who bought it!), but there were people, mainly men (black and white), who told me, in letters and emails, to my face, to people I know, that they’d never buy a book with a naked dude on the cover. Of course, part of me thought: They’re loss. But then it also seemed like there were media people who didn’t want to read the book for coverage or review, because they assumed HUNG was just something sexy and frivolous. It is sexy and frivolous but it’s more than that too, and maybe without the nude dude on the cover HUNG won’t be as able to be dismissed outright and might be considered as a cool, interesting book with some (I’d like to think) valid and thoughtful things to say about American culture and race and masculinity. Maybe some dudes, some peeps in general, now won’t be put off by the cover. I know that you can’t please everybody, but hey, let’s see how it goes. No, you can’t please everybody, but you don’t wanna turn folks off either, not when you wanna sell some books and get your words out to the world. And at the end of the day, the book wasn’t about the hot guy’s chest. It was about this sorta-hot guy’s mind…only kidding…I’m very hot! — at least a recent email I got from a fan of HUNG says so, and, as I’m getting old, I’m going with it.

SPEAKING OF HOT DUDES: The HUNG commercials are getting filmed after all. And since that’s the case, I need some hot brothas to appear in the ads as well as some of the mailing material going out to the world about the book. The ads are take-offs on Sex and the City, funny and sexy and may require some “nudity” (NO PRIVATES EXPOSED!!!), and some spoken dialogue. If you consider yourself hot or know some guys who consider themselves hot—particularly in the face and chest area—let me know. They might get cast in a series of funny, hot online ads for HUNG. Unfortunately they won’t be getting paid (not a lotta money, anyway) but they wil get tons of exposure online and in press materials. If interested, anyone should send a picture and short bio to me at this email address: TheSPBQ@aol.com with “HUNG ADS” in the subject line.

Pop Culture Is Fundamental: As usual I’m reading twenty books at a time. But the one that seems to be occupying my time most of late is a cute, hilarious tale of sexy single womanhood. It’s called Last Night a DJ Saved My Life, by Lyah Beth LeFlore. TV-wise, other than my Project Runway and Big Brother 7: All-Stars obsessions (though now that Kaysar’s gone, the eye candy is severly diminished), I’m hooked on two DVDs, one of a current show I ignored the first time around Weeds and the other an old show that I ignored back in the day, Dark Angel. Weeds is smarter and more surprising than I expected it to be, even though I find Elizabeth Perkins’s neighbor character more fun than Mary Louise Parker’s weed-slinging lead. And I love her sons, grieving over the loss of their pops (played by that kat who was Denny, the sexy heart patient who stole Izzy’s heart on Grey’s Anatomy) as they’re trying to get through adolescence. The scenes between the older son and his deaf girlfriend are sublime. I’ve loved Justin Kirk for years and it’s nice to see him bug out as the crazy brother-in-law. I’m not so into the black folks who were selling Mary Louise her stock, particularly the smart-mouthed, metaphor-dropping mama, but then, when do these writers ever get black folks right? (Except for Grey’s Anatomy). Same with Dark Angel—I love Jessica Alba’s multi-ethnic supergirl shtick, but how annoying is that black dyke chick, Original Cindy, who refers to herself in the third person? I love that homegirl’s an out and proud lover of women who goes for hers but must she be soooo head-swingingly smart-assed that she cuts everyone down all the time? I get it: STRONG BLACK WOMAN. But after a while she starts to come off as INSECURE, POORLY-WRITTEN EXCUSE FOR WHITE GUILT. Thanks for the episode where her old girlfriend came back on the scene and Cindy had to show some real emotion.

(MY) SPACE BAR: I’m now on myspace.com. Thanks to Mr. Shawn, intern-extraordinaire at GIANT magazine, you can get HUNG info and other cool stuff about me at myspace.com/ruhung. All the bells and whistles aren’t completely up yet, but you can still stop by…become my friend…add a pic…have some fun…

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