ultimate office throwdown

Think about the things you’re obsessed with. Now narrow them down into categories (books, music, shows, movies). What’s your #1 show? For me, it’s The Office. I should note that My So-Called Life, Freaks and Geeks, and Dawson’s Creek are included when it comes to my hardcore fangirl obsessions. I should also note that I ranked #1 in the Dawson’s Creek Trivia Challenge back in the early days of Facebook. Okay, I was only #1 for like a day (this Australian girl was always beating me with her scary knowledge of everyone’s license plate numbers and birthdays). But still. My obsessions don’t play.

You know how you feel a sense of ownership with your fave show? Like no one could possibly know anywhere near as much as you do about it, including those super obscure details you only know because you froze the screen to read that address/note/flyer? That’s totally me when it comes to The Office. Which is why, when Carmen and Layla were visiting this summer with their incredibly cool parents, I challenged them to the Ultimate Office Throwdown.

Ultimate Office Throwdown participants

We immediately bonded over our love for all things Office the second we met. We spent hours tossing around quotes, reenacting scenes and cracking up over the kind of inside jokes only hardcore Office freaks like us would understand. I would have been impressed with anyone who could match my Office skills like they did. But Carmen and Layla are in middle school. That made them way more impressive. Could I let some middle school boy best me in the world of Jam? It was time to throw down, girl power style.

Carmen and I wrote 20 questions each (Layla also wrote some good ones!). We were not allowed to consult the show or anything online. Our questions and answers were strictly from memory. We had the option of challenging if we didn’t agree with an answer. But please. We’re so hardcore the answers had been burned into our brains long ago. If you think we tossed out easy stuff like What does Dwight grow on his farm?, think again. We didn’t call it the Ultimate Office Throwdown for nothing.

Here is a sampling of my trivia questions. These were the hardest ones I could think of with answers on the spot. If you love The Office, you might want to challenge yourself with these. The answers are listed at the end of this post.

Ultimate Office Throwdown Questions

1. How many words per minute do Pam and Jim type?

2. What is the street address of Dunder Mifflin?

3. When Michael wants to do Yankee Swap at the Christmas party, what does Jim say Yankee Swap is called? What does Pam say they call Yankee Swap in her family?

4. When Michael cooks his foot on the George Foreman Grill, what does he ask Ryan to get at the gas station that they didn’t have? Which town is the gas station in?

5. At Pam’s art show, what does Michael have in his pocket?

6. How much did Michael pay for the iPod he gave Ryan for Secret Santa?

7. At Dwight’s wedding, what is the first thing Dwight says when he sees Michael? What is Michael’s response?

8. When Dwight meets with Jan secretly trying to steal Michael’s managing job, near which outlet do they meet?

9. What new nickname does Andy give Jim the morning of Jim’s job interview in New York?

10. What is the name of Jim’s avatar in Second Second Life? What does Pam call his avatar?

11. When Dwight is taken to the hospital for a concussion, what does he tell Michael his middle name is?

12. What are Michael and Jim’s final lunch orders when Michael takes Jim to Hooters?

13. What time is Michael’s birth moment?

Dude, Carmen was crazy good at answering these. The throwdown was a tie! And we had the best non-coincidence after. We all went to Central Park. The kids were climbing a tall boulder. This couple walking by looked up at the kids on the boulder and said, “Hardcore parkour!” No one jumped into a Vance Refrigeration box, though.

Ready for the answers?

Ultimate Office Throwdown Answers

1. Pam – 90 wpm. Jim – 65 wpm.

2. 1725 Slough Avenue

3. Jim – Nasty Christmas. Pam – White Elephant.

4. Yams. Carbondale.

5. A Chunky bar

6. $400

7. Dwight: Michael. I can’t believe you came. Michael: That’s what she said.

8. Liz Claiborne

9. Big Haircut

10. Jim Samtanko. Philly Jim.

11. Danger

12. Michael – Gourmet hotdog. Jim – Ham and cheese sandwich.

13. 11:23 am

So. How did you do?!

city love cover reveal

Breaking book news! The cover of my ninth teen novel, City Love, was revealed yesterday on Hypable with a behind-the-scenes video of the cover shoot. I am beyond stoked to share this gorgeous cover with you.

City Love by Susane Colasanti

City Love will be released on April 21, 2015. This is actually the first book of a trilogy. After writing eight stand-alone novels, I’m super excited to be working on a series.

Here’s the synopsis:

Sadie, Darcy, and Rosanna are living together in New York City the summer before their freshman year of college begins. With no parents, no rules, and an entire city to explore, these three girls are on the verge of the best summer of their lives.

Sadie is a native New Yorker. She is hopeful, romantic, and an eternal optimist who is ready to find her soul mate. Then she meets her dream boy: cute, funny, and quirky in all the right ways. The chemistry between them is unreal. Could he be the one?

Darcy is a free spirit from SoCal with rebellious tendencies and unlimited financial resources. Moving to New York City is just another adventure for her. Darcy wants this summer to be all about boy adventures—nothing serious. But how much fun is too much?

Rosanna leaves Chicago for NYC so she can put her past behind her and reinvent herself. The only thing standing in her way is the grand total of seventy-three cents she has saved. Then she meets a guy who wants to show her the glamorous side of New York—a side that she would never get to experience on her own. If Rosanna doesn’t resist, she may find herself in city love.

Told from alternating points of view, City Love captures the moments in each girl’s life when everything is thrilling, amazing, and terrifying all at once . . . in a way it will never be again.

City Love is available for pre-ordering on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound. Its Goodreads page can be found here.

Lots of awesome City Love marketing things will be coming up over the next six months. Please stay tuned for all the funtivities!

top ten, working it edition

1. Those of you who have been reading this blog for a while might know that I like to work out. I’ve been working out since I was 16, doing aerobics in front of the TV with Charlene Prickett on a very 80s show called It Figures. We’re talking leotards, belts, and leg warmers. Then it was on to a lot of step in college. Other classes in grad school. Since then I’ve been into kickboxing, boot camp, yoga, Pilates, hip-hop dance, and total body with a few trainers. Currently I’m all about the Zumba, Bodypump, and core. In over 20 years of working out at many gyms, Kara Doyle is by far the most amazing fitness instructor I’ve ever had. She is in permanent beast mode. She is dorktastic in the best possible way. She has dazzling positive energy that motivates her students to work harder and inspires us to be better. I’ve only been working out with Kara for about three years, but in that time she has shaped me into someone who, for the first time ever, might actually be in rehearsal for the gun show.

So I was bummed to see that no one’s ever buying tickets to my gun show while Jim Wittig is working it:

Susane Colasanti and Jim Wittig

Muscles much? Jim is fierce. He does not play. Actually, he does play hard after he works hard. My BF/soul mate (who is Jim’s cousin) took this photo of us at Jim’s poolside gym. At his gorgeous beach house. That sleeps 22 people. Um, yeah. Jim wins.

2. Happy 20th Anniversary to my favorite comic strip of all time, MUTTS! Patrick McDonnell does such a beautiful job of creating sweet, sensitive artwork that raises awareness of animal rights while encouraging everyone to treat the world around them with respect and admiration.

MUTTS comic, pink bubble wishes

May your pink bubble wishes for peace and harmony blossom.

3. Some of you have been asking me if the reference to Red Bedroom Records in Now and Forever is the same Red Bedroom Records from One Tree Hill. They are absolutely the same! One thing I love about writing teen novels is adding the kinds of quirky details I love reading in books. I adore making connections that resonate with me and I am thrilled when you love them, too!

4. Speaking of Now and Forever, Jean BookNerd just posted a fresh interview with me and included a giveaway of three signed copies of the book! Thanks for being so awesome, Jean.

5. I really don’t want to admit this. But. After much denial, I have to say that it’s getting kind of chilly. Like dipping down into the 50s at night. I’m doing my best not to let the end of summer get to me. We officially have one more week of summer left. The autumnal equinox is September 23 this year. And you best believe I will be working it endless summer style until then. This summer girl does not want to put her flip-flops away. No one should ever have to put their flip-flops away. Unless, you know. You love fall. If fall is your season, then yay for you! I’m sure you will be working those sweaters and scarves like nobody’s business.

6. It seems that I may have developed a slight addiction to ModCloth dresses. If by “slight,” I mean “severe.”

Susane Colasanti in ModCloth

This was my summer fave. We called it the mermaid dress. See you next summer, mermaid dress. Tear.

7. An apartment one block from my place is being sold for $16 million. Of course it is on my dream home list. Don’t get me wrong. I totally love my place. Buying and renovating my apartment was when I turned one of my biggest dreams into reality. But this is my first apartment, not my last. There will be a lot of changes in the next few years. A lot of big, exciting, groundbreaking changes. Part of my practice of creative visualization involves recording my goals for the next three months, six months, year, three years, five years, ten years, and lifetime. A penthouse apartment here in downtown Manhattan is right up there on the goals list. The epitome of working it as a New York City homeowner is scoring the type of apartment that is so you it becomes this peaceful Zen retreat. My home is like that. It is a bright, streamlined writing oasis. But this duplex penthouse at 18 Gramercy Park? Is def on my goal list as a future Zen retreat.

8. You know how the models on my book covers never show their faces? I prefer it that way. When I’m reading a book, I like to imagine the characters the way my mind shapes them as the story unfolds. At the same time, it’s always interesting to see the cover models’ faces. They never look the way I thought they would! Friendly neighbor Ronni found this interview with the boy on the cover of Something Like Fate. Thanks, Ronni! Plus you can see what the cover boy from Keep Holding On looks like and read a short interview I did with him here.

9. For the first time since the Bureau of Labor Statistics started keeping count, more than half the adult population in the United States is single. And into it. They’re the growing number of people putting their time and money into making cities vibrant. Only 22% of Americans were single in 1950. Today the number is just over 50%. One factor that’s contributing to more people staying single longer or making life changes to become single? The search for a soul mate. Refusing to settle for anything less than what your heart desires. The key to finding true happiness in a relationship is finding true happiness with yourself first. Snaps for everyone who has the confidence to work it and own it being single, confident, and happy.

10. I’ll end with this reminder:

You are of infinite worth

You are of infinite worth. Never forget that you matter, you are making a difference in this world, and you are loved <3

top ten, endless summer edition

How is it the end of August already? Seriously with this? So what you’re telling me is that it will be Thanksgiving three months from now? Directly followed by winter?

I demand a recount.

1. One of the hardest parts of leaving summer behind is saying goodbye to summer fruit. The amount of watermelon I have already eaten is extraordinary. 

I heart watermelon

Then there was the best cantaloupe I’d ever had in my entire life. We got it at a roadside farm stand in New Jersey. It tasted just like growing up in Jersey farmland. And don’t even get me started on the berries. Blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries. I will miss you all to pieces.

2. Fortunately for us, there are lots of other treats to savor. Like Sprinkles Ice Cream sundaes. See, first there was Sprinkles Cupcakes, which I finally got to visit for the first time when I was on book tour in Los Angeles in 2010. That was also when I got to meet Wilson from Cast Away (scroll down in the same post for documentation)! Then Sprinkles expanded into ice cream territory. A mad impressive accomplishment, especially considering that they were killing it just with the cupcakes. I like taking some of my old students out for cupcakes once a year. It’s our Friendly Neighbor Reunion. This year our FNR was held at Sprinkles Ice Cream, which is right next door to Sprinkles Cupcakes and the Sprinkles Cupcake ATM. What did I have?

Susane Colasanti with a Sprinkles Ice Cream sundae

Um, yeah. This is a Sprinkles Ice Cream sundae. It’s a cupcake bottom, then ice cream, then the cupcake top and frosting. They also have cookie sundaes and brownie sundaes. The cookies and brownies are broken up into cups. Then you add whatever ice cream and toppings you want. All I’m going to say is this: It’s a good thing Sprinkles is uptown and I live downtown. There is no way I would be able to resist a daily sundae fix if I lived closer.

3. Summer reading freaking rules. Everyone knows this. My summer reading started with Eleanor & Park. Reading that book was like a mental mashup of classic 80s movies highlights plus my most embarrassing dark secrets from high school. Rainbow Rowell’s writing is so beautiful and brilliant and true that I immediately had to go out and buy her other books. I can’t even explain to you how much fun I’m having reading Landline. It’s official. I’m a Rainbow Rowell fangirl.

4. It wouldn’t be summer without experiencing my trifecta of fave old-school down the shore activities on the Point Pleasant boardwalk: Skee-Ball, water ice, and bumper cars.

Susane Colasanti and bumper cars

Am I aware that I am a major dork? Yes. I am totally aware of that. It is ridiculous how excited I get for bumper cars. But I’m not one of those mean riders who enjoys bumping into other cars. I like to swing around the outside in a smooth circle, avoiding the pileups and staying in motion. You could say I’m a bumper car pacifist.

5. One book event highlight of the summer was Beach Bag Book Club on Long Island. This is an annual event I absolutely adore. I’m extremely fortunate to have participated in BBBC for the past few summers. This year I was on a super fun panel with these fabulous authors:

Jennifer E. Smith, Kieran Scott, Susane Colasanti, Elizabeth Eulberg, and Jen Calonita

Here I am surrounded by Jennifer E. Smith, Kieran Scott, Elizabeth Eulberg, and Jen Calonita. These ladies are beyond amazing. Their accomplishments are an inspiration to us all. If you’re looking for more summer reading, I highly recommend everything by these four adorable romance writers.

6. Speaking of book stuff, some fresh interviews were posted this summer. Author Turf interviewed me about inspiration, career building, and advice for aspiring writers. Progressive Radio Network interviewed me in the studio about my inspiration for Now and Forever, why my main motto is Dream Big, and how my personal love life influences my books. The interview starts at 32:55 of the podcast. 

7. Even more book stuff! Remember when I shared some behind-the-scenes photos from the City Love cover shoot? Here’s one more via Margot Wood, who was on the scene:

City Love by Susane Colasanti cover shoot

I heard there were way more people there. The cover shoot took place over two days on a Brooklyn rooftop to capture the dazzling New York City skyline in the background. Book one of the City Love trilogy will be out on April 21, 2015. But the cover should be revealed soon! Please stay tuned for exciting news about the reveal.

8. This summer here in New York was gorgeous. Not crazy hot and humid. August was way more tolerable than usual. That meant lots of dinners outside, epic night walks, and laying out on the sundeck. Temperatures were in the 90s for only 4 days this summer as opposed to the average 18 days. But the summer overall has been two-tenths of a degree warmer than average. Escaping a heat wave made the summer feel cooler, even though it wasn’t. Plus our last four summers ranked in the top ten of hottest summers for this past century. And the Earth experienced its highest temperatures in over a century during this May and June. This concludes the part where I geek out science teacher style. Thanks for listening.

9. Shout-out to Garrison Keillor for celebrating Prairie Home Companion’s 40th anniversary this summer! I have been a massive Prairie Home fan for…wow, almost 20 years. Snaps for Garrison preserving vintage radio show entertainment. Long live PHC.

10. Here’s to epic summer love.

All I Need by Susane Colasanti, National Book Store

 Summer is not over yet, friendly neighbors. Anything is possible <3

now and forever cover reveal

As an author, there are certain days every year I look forward to the most. Pub day. Book tours. Any opportunity to meet readers. And the day when I get to share the cover of my new book.

Today is that day.

A team of fabulous designers has been working on the cover of my new book, Now and Forever, for a while now. I’m beyond ecstatic to finally be able to share it with you!

Now and Forever by Susane Colasanti

Here’s the synopsis:

***

What if your boyfriend was the world’s biggest rock star?

Sterling is crazy in love with Ethan. Not only is he the sweetest boy she’s ever met, but he’s an incredibly talented guitarist, singer, and songwriter. And since forever, he’s believed he has what it takes to be a star.

When Ethan becomes an overnight sensation, he’s thrown head-first into the glam world of celebrity—and so is Sterling. Before she knows it, she’s attending red-carpet premieres, getting free designer clothes, and flying around the country to attend Ethan’s monumental sold-out concerts.

It’s a dream come true…but whose dream is Sterling living? And what do you do when “forever” comes to an end?

***

Now and Forever will be released on May 20, 2014.

One of my biggest teen fantasies was that my boyfriend was the world’s biggest rock star. So I decided to bring that fantasy to life with Now and Forever. I hope you’ll enjoy the excitement, intense chemistry, and crazy drama this book brings. Rock on, friendly neighbors!

help wanted 2

TGIM, friendly neighbors! To celebrate this shiny new week, I’ve posted the second video of my relationship advice series, Help Wanted. This one focuses on soul mates, what to do when your BFF dumps you for her BF, and when to go for it.


Why am I doing these advice videos? Because I want you to never settle for anything less than what your heart desires. You deserve ultimate happiness. You have the power to turn your dreams into reality. I want every single one of you to create your ideal life. Dream big and never give up.

Much love. xoxo

something like brazil

Yay, it’s pub day for Something Like Fate in Brazil!

Perhaps you’ll recognize the cover.

Tipo Destino by Susane Colasanti

Although I can’t understand all of it, the official trailer is super cute.

I have much love for my Brazilian readers. They have been so enthusiastic and supportive. That’s why I’m extra stoked about this foreign release. Thanks to Seja Cult for this fun interview and to my Brazilian publisher, Novo Conceito, for this one.

For those of you who speak Portuguese, Novo Conceito is hosting a Google Hangout with me today at 3:00pm EST. Hope to chill with you then!