Random Chitchats

Shop Talk Tuesday with Jody Feldman

Today we have Jody Feldman joining us in the beauty shop! Jody is a Class of 2k8 member and author of the mid-grade novel, THE GOLLYWHOPPER GAMES.


25,000 contestants will enter, but only one will win what might be the biggest, bravest, boldest kids’ competition the world has ever seen. Gil Goodson may have more reason to win than anyone else. It was, after all, the Golly Toy & Game Company that had had his father arrested and ruined Gil’s life. If Gil can get through the questions, puzzles and stunts, he might have a chance at redemption. Does he have what it takes to win? Do you?

So welcome, Jody! Grab some coffee, get comfy in the beautician’s chair, and let’s get down to the gossip.

Thanks! If you don’t mind, though, I’ll take that Caffeine-Free Diet Coke. I may be the only writer in America who doesn’t do caffeine.

Nope, make that two. I’ve been caffeine-aspartame-splenda-free for weeks now, so how about a boring green tea with skim milk? Yum. Okay, first off: What’s the most regrettable hairstyle you’ve ever had? Any mullets? Rat tails?

Oh, I was proud of this haircut:


It was the 80s when you either wore your hair long in a high, side ponytail or teased it really big or wore it the way we short-haired people did. Spiky. And how do you like all that make-up?

First, major kudos for sending a picture. We like pictures. And yes, I fondly remember my streaked blusher and ‘Jack it to Jesus’ hair. 😉 Okay, what hair styling product can you not live without?

Hairspray. Otherwise my hair flattens down and falls forward. Believe me, it isn’t pretty.

Ever had a major hair or salon disaster?

I thought I had a major hair disaster in high school. I went to a new stylist and told her I was ready for a shorter cut. By shorter, I meant three or four inches shorter. When I walked in, my long, straight hair reached the middle of my back. When I walked out of there with barely shoulder-length hair, I was so in shock, I couldn’t even cry. I think I muttered the rest of the weekend. Then Monday came, and I had to go to school and face the ridicule. But out of the clear blue, one of the cutest, most popular boys who’d never really spoken to me came up, told me he liked my hair that way, and meant it. Just goes to prove that, sometimes, hair stylists know best.

Rock that short hair! Okay, time for your “Hypothetical Questions of the Week:”

HQ #1: TV execs are offering you a spot on a new reality show for writers. Do you say yes? If so, how would you be portrayed? (i.e. the boss, whiner, bore, paranoid-wreck, etc.?)

Me? On reality TV? Let’s say I didn’t think through the ramifications of potential miscommunication and embarrassment and say, “Yesiree Bob!” Now, my first thought as to how’d I’d be portrayed fits in with the fact that, deep down, I’m still that shy five year old. I’d sit back at first and fly under the radar, I told family members when they asked what I was typing, then emerge to be a strong, competent contender. Oh no, they said. You’d be the boss.

HQ #2: 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?

If I happened to undergo a complete personality reversal along with my new celebrity status …

Cylery Godzilla.

Cylery for the fact that celery is thin and regal and stalk-y in a non-paparazzi-stalking sense. (But really. Who’s going to spell their child’s name like a vegetable when there are perfectly good y’s in the world?) And Godzylla for the strength and godlike characteristics I’d want him or her to have. (Yes, this really is a name for both genders.)

HQ #3: Paparazzi are stalking you, looking for shots of odd things authors do while writing. What do they catch you doing, hmm?

You mean besides talking to myself? How about crawling into a Mort-like shell, as in the guy from the Bazooka Joe comics? Bringing a shirt collar up, covering my mouth when I’m deep in thought … and did I really admit to that?


Yep, you did. And I just posted it so it’s too late to take it back, hehehe! 😉

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?

I’m way too blunt to be Paula, but too nice to be Simon. I’m just keepin’ it real, dawg.

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

Sigh. Grunt. Ponder. Sigh.

That’s me in high school, trying to fill in the Major spot on the college application. I had zero clue. I sort of liked science and math, but couldn’t see myself going down those roads. I didn’t have that history teacher that gave me any desire to look backward. Writing bored me. I loved to read, but only books I wanted to. I wasn’t an athlete, an actress or an artist. So for lack of anything better, I finally wrote “Psychology” in that blank. The doctor is out.

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

Do you . . .
Outline or wing it?
Just go!
Talk about works-in-progress, or keep your trap shut? Limited verbage
Sell by proposal or completed draft? Proposal eventually
Love to edit or cringe at the thought? Hives
Prefer writing a new book or marketing the old? New!
Write better at home or in a coffee shop? PJs
Read your released book or no thank you, I’ve read it enough? Onward!

And finally, what’s your favorite . . .
Time to write?
Roll-out-of-bed, can’t-open-my-eyes, don’t-talk-to-me-yet morning.
Movie? Romantic comedy, Tootsie; war, Stalag 17; action, The Fugitive.
Book? Kids, The Westing Game; Adult, Pride and Prejudice.
Song? Classic, Maggie May (Rod Stewart); Past decade, Crazy (Gnarls Barkley)
Pair of shoes? Currently … red, patent-leather pumps
Guiltiest pleasure? Spending an entire day on the couch, watching the 5-hour version of Pride and Prejudice (1995), stopping only for some really good take-out food.
Line from a movie? I’ll leave you with two. (Can you tell? I don’t actually have any favorite-favorite anythings. And many of these favorites would change if you asked me tomorrow.)

From My Big Fat Greek Wedding: “Here tonight, we have, ah, apple and orange. We all different, but in the end, we all fruit.”

From You’ve Got Mail: “When you read a book as a child, it becomes a part of your identity in a way that no other reading in your whole life does.”

Aw, I love that line from You’ve Got Mail! Sniff. So sweet. Thanks so much for stopping by, Jody, and best of luck with THE GOLLYWHOPPER GAMES!

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