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Shop Talk Tuesday with Jo Knowles

Happy Tuesday! Today we have Jo Knowles joining us in the beauty shop. Jo is the author of the YA novel, Lessons From A Dead Girl (Candlewick Press), the story of an abusive friendship and one girl’s struggle to find understanding and forgiveness.


Welcome, Jo! Grab some coffee, get comfy in the beautician’s chair, and let’s get down to the gossip.

Thanks, Laura! It’s so nice to be here!! I could use some highlights and a trim.

Wow, you truly are a brave woman if you trust me with scissors. 😉 Okay, first off, when’s the last time you’ve treated yourself to a manicure?

Actually, I have NEVER treated myself to one. I’m so embarrassed! I’ve had two manicures in my life. One for a friend’s wedding—she paid. And the most recent (10 years ago) for my own wedding. A friend of mine was a little horrified that I wasn’t planning to have my nails done so she went out and bought me a gift certificate. I can’t help it. I’m guess I’m just not a painted nails kind of gal. 🙂

Nah, neither am I. What’s the most regrettable hairstyle you’ve ever had? Any mullets? Rat tails?

A few days before I started high school I cut my hair short and got a perm. I looked like a mousey Orphan Annie. It was a really regrettable way to start my high school career.

What beauty product can you not live without?

Oil of Olay hydrating lotion. I’ve been using it forever.

In my novel, the ladies have fun answering the “Hypothetical Questions of the Week” from their favorite tabloid. So here are some for you:

HQ #1: You’re a big-time celebrity who just had a baby. If you were competing for the most bizarre celebrity baby name, what would it be?

Pickle (girl or boy)

HQ #2: Paparazzi are stalking you, looking for shots of odd things authors do while writing. What do they catch you doing, hmm?

Eating Smarties for breakfast.

HQ #3: You’ve been locked in a bank vault with that guy from The Twilight Zone, so you finally have time to read! What’s the first book you crack open? (And don’t worry—no one stepped on your glasses.)

I’ve always wanted to read War and Peace?

HQ #4: If I asked the members of your critique group who you’re most like when critiquing manuscripts, would they choose Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul or Simon Cowell?

Probably Randy. I think it’s really important to be honest AND nice. 🙂

HQ #5: If you followed the career path you chose for yourself in high school, what would you be doing for a living now?

I think I changed my mind about 500 times in high school. So let’s see. Either a photo journalist, a nurse, a private investigator, a veterinarian, a teacher or a graphic designer.

The Lightening Round—no more than two words per answer!

Do you . . .
Outline or wing it?
Wing it
Talk about works-in-progress, or keep your trap shut? Talk
Sell by proposal or completed draft? My choice?
Love to edit or cringe at the thought? Love it
Prefer writing a new book or marketing the old? Both
Write better at home or in a coffee shop? Coffee shop
Read your released book or no thank you, I’ve read it enough? Just passages

And finally, what’s your favorite . . .
Time to write?
Movie? Princess Bride
Book? Author? Impossible to choose!
Song? It depends on my mood. 😉
Pair of shoes? Flip flops
Guiltiest pleasure? The E! channel
Line from a movie? That day, she was amazed to discover that when he was saying “As you wish”, what he meant was, “I love you.”

Thanks for joining us, Jo, and for being brave enough to let me work with your hair. Those chunky highlight stripes look . . . um, real nice, sweetie. And about those lopsided bangs . . . asymmetrical hair-dos are due for a comeback, right?
Have a great holiday!

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