The initial email looked like any other. But the subject line was anything but ordinary: POSSIBLE TODAY SHOW APPEARANCE.
The email that every author hopes for!
After a brief wave of nervousness, followed by a happy dance, and a few calls and emails between the perky Today Show segment producer, Lindsay, and my publisher, Overlook Press, the plans were set. Kathie Lee and Hoda would interview me at 10AM on Wednesday, September 30, about friendship breakups-a subject near and dear to my heart and one of the main topics of my book, Best Friends Forever: Surviving a Breakup with Your Best Friend.
My black pantsuit was pressed and bagged should such an occasion arise. My head was wrapped around it too. After a recent radio tour with more than 20 different stations across the country, I was confident that I knew my book and my subject well but I had no idea about the questions that I would be asked on live TV. That was the good news–because I didn’t have to prepare!
The experience was a hoot! A black Mercedes limo picked up Vida (the dynamic Overlook publicist), my son Boxer Boy (nicknamed for his favorite home attire), and my hubby Jerry and drove us to 30 Rock (yes, that 30 Rock!) If you haven’t been there, it’s a wonder art deco building that only looks more beautiful over time.
I was told to arrive with dry hair and no makeup at 9AM. Four pairs of hair stylists and makeup artists (who told me that they only do TV hair and faces) got right to work on me and other guests simultaneously. The chairs were set up, salon style, four in a row with a refrigerator and snacks nearby for my guests. No pictures were allowed of the primping room. Kathie Lee walked past us into her dressing room while I was seated. Since each TV segment is about 5-7 minutes long, I tried to figure out how many heads are done in those chairs each day. Many.
Then I was ushered into the green room and met my fellow guest, anthropologist Helen Fisher, an experienced talking head. There was a tempting spread of goodies (but who could dare eat and ruin her lipstick?) and multiple TV sets so you could watch the segments preceding yours.
Within minutes, Helen and I bonded and were led to the chilled studio set that looked like a Manhattan living room (there was even a kitchen set behind the cameras for cooking segments). Kathie Lee and Hoda were knockouts: charming, chatty, and beautifully attired. They welcomed us warmly and then we were on!
The only thing I can compare the experience to is my wedding. After all the anticipation and excitement, it went so fast. But the memories made it like a Polish wedding that goes on forever: warm calls and emails from friends, relatives and fellow writers who had seen me on Today. Jim, from Virginia, said that he had seen me on the treadmill in the gym. The women at Donna Hair Design huddled around the computer at the front desk. My mom watched it with a caregiver in her apartment. And my former office colleagues watched it live at work. We were picked up in a Lincoln Town Car and taken back home like Cinderella. Then the downloads began as I posted the video clip on Facebook and Twitter. The joy of being on live TV with an audience estimated at around 5 million viewers was only exceeded by the spike in my book sales! Now I’m definitely ready for Colbert and Oprah!
If you are the last person who hasn’t seen the video, you can watch it now:
The “behind the scenes” pictures can be
seen on Picassa: http://bit.ly/btMZp.
Category: IN THE MEDIA