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February 02, 2009

Virgin Contest


Virgin Contest

By Harley

(Go, Steelers!)

The world is divided into 2 kinds of people: those who enter contests and those who don’t. I’m in the latter category. Which is odd, since I think of myself as both lucky and gullible. But I’ve just never believed I’d win the lottery, or hear the Millionaire ring my doorbell or that the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes truly exists. (It does exist, but the odds of nabbing a recent $10 million prize were 505,000,000 to one. That means if you entered every day, it would take you over a million years to have even odds of winning.)

Maybe I’m sweepstakes-indifferent because I’ve spent my professional life pursuing acting and novel-writing. Talk about contests. Long shots. Cattle calls, slush piles, competition. If we’re all given an allotment of luck at birth, I don’t want to squander mine on bingo, I want to save it up for a shot at the New York Times bestseller list.

However, life’s not always about me, me, me, and it’s been recently brought to my attention that other people love contests. Adore them. And that some of these people are readers of my books, or potential readers of my books. Aha! Clearly it’s time to brush up on my contest skills, because I have a new book, A Date You Can't Refuse, coming out next month.

.Date you can't refuse.rev

Therefore you, gentle reader (or violent, belligerent reader) of this blog will get first crack at my first real contest. My virgin contest. (There was a contest in 2004, but my friend Carol organized it and all I had to do was ship a copy of Dating Dead Men to 2 nice girls in Sweden.)

Here’s the deal. A Date You Can’t Refuse once again features my heroine Wollie Shelley, greeting card designer and serial dater who, for reasons I never even try to explain, encounters corpses with Jessica-Fletcher-like frequency. In this adventure, Wollie is sucked into working at a place called MediasRex, a Los Angeles-based media training organization.

Among other plot details, for those who OCHFTS, there is sex at a major department store.

So anyhow. In the spirit of this media-related plot, I thought it would be fun to enlist your genius in devising an escapade that would bring me and/or Wollie to the attention of the national media. Not that I’m desperate to sell books or anything. I just think it could be . . . useful.

So that’s it. Tell me your best attention-getting idea. It could involve octuplets, it could involve nudity (Josh), it could even involve virgins, if only to justify the title of this blog. It should almost certainly include one or more Steelers. Anything that will land me on the radar of Anderson Cooper, into the hands of anyone on Air Force One, or onto the pages of STAR magazine.

The judging will occur in an undisclosed location, the results tabulated by the firm of Price Waterhouse and the winner will be announced Friday. Or Saturday. Whenever Me, Margie tells me to announce it.

The best, most ingenious idea will receive -- money? No, no. How about a signed, limited edition Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) of A Date You Can’t Refuse? Suitable for reading, framing, or selling on eBay once I become the Dan Brown, the James Patterson, the Herman Melville of dating mysteries.

No contest entry will be rejected on the grounds of cheesiness, illegality, or impracticality.

Let the games begin.

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IRL, start falling over corpses in the same order as Wollie. Or, start with your ex-husband. Some of us, I'm sure, can figure out a way to off him in a newsworthy way. It may involve extreme flexibility and self -asphixiation. (People choke on small things all the time.)

Harley, there's no need for this. Just book Larry King, and tell them the truth about the time you defeated a proper villain at the poker tables in Montenegro. Or how you saved the world's water supply by exposing and defeating the multi-zillionaire villain and dumping him in the middle of the desert with nothing but a can of motor oil to drink.

And you all thought those movies were made up. Pffffft. Harley does that sort of stuff all the time, AND gets home in time to make breakfast for her children.

Beat THAT, Mr. B....

Hello? Sex tape with Daniel Craig?

How about submitting greeting cards sayings?

I’ve already read A Date You Can’t Refuse, and it’s FABULOUS! A definite must read of 2009.

I think Ramona just nailed the contest. Me, Margie can write up the rules.

You're on a book tour in Scotland. You're driving down a road. All of a sudden, the Loch Ness Monster dashes out in front of you. You apply the brakes. You try to stop. You can't. Now, you've really got trouble.....

Yeah, I agree with Ramona. But, he is listed on IMDB at 5'10", which means he's probably 5'7", and Harley is listed on IMDB at 5'9", which means she's probably an even 6'0".

Is she okay with that four- or five-inch difference? Add heels, and we are talking nine- to 10-inch difference. Except that the heels are only supposed to be up in the air (in Ramona's suggestion), so I guess they shouldn't count in the equation.

Josh, that made me laugh so hard tears started.

Durn, I think Ramona has won it, too. But I will think about this for awhile.

Did I mention the sex tape could be a threesome? And that, to me, height doesn't matter?

Plan B: Sign up for American Idol and sing the first chapter of the book.

Create a greeting card with a strategic naughty typo and send it to everyone you can think of--including reviewers.

Have nine-tuplets with Troy Polamalu.

Or, at the Steelers victory parade, pretend it's Mardi Gras and flash Big Ben, revealing your new tattoo which reads: "Sixburgh Rocks". You could end up on the podium, where you can identify yourself as the love child of the late Art Rooney and Marilyn Monroe.

Kind of a hijack!

Saw this on GMA this morning and knew you would be interested in taking this test!


It takes at least 10 minutes to complete and the results will tell you your basic personality type and it will tell you which personality type you should be in a relationship with.

I'm a Builder/Negotiator!

There might be some way to use this test to promote your book, but I just haven't come up with "the hook" just yet.

I meant that you in the "yunz" global way.

Nice to see such a beautiful collection of brains put to such good use first thing in the morning.

Josh, you are in fine form, but two things:

A.Let nothing bad happen to my kids' dad. They are very fond of him and he's being a friendly co-divorcé, so let's have just good karma and pleasant thoughts. Plus, he's a Steelers fan.

B. I used to be 5'8 and a half, but I'm now down to 5'7 and a half. By odd coincidence, just yesterday my friend Yara and I were arguing over how tall Blond Bond really is. Yara said tall. I said short. Ramona? I feel sure you've measured him. In his sleep, since he's probably sensitive about this.

Damn you Ramona. You nailed it.

And Josh - for Ramona's "plan", I'm thinking that the height of the participants doesn't matter that much!

But in case you can't get Daniel nekked....

You need to start a viral internet campaign. Get on Twitter, facebook, etc

What about doing a nekked sky dive? That'll get some attention.

Call Oprah and get on there. Surely you knows someone who knows someone who knows someone who knows Oprah.

Can't. Contribute. Hung. Over. And. Must. Clean. Kitchen. Of. Game. Leftovers.

I think you need to adopt about 10 children in Africa. To help the cause, of course. What cause, you ask? Any cause you can think of. Angelina Jolie will be your best friend. Of course if you pull a Madonna and have parents and/or any other relatives coming to threaten your goodwill and want their children back, that would work, too. And maybe Alison Gaylin can get you into InTouch magazine.

Seriously now, your series focuses on dating, so...Dating contest? Win a dream date with Wollie? Get yourself scheduled on a reality dating TV show? (Is there one?)

That might be a bit too much like living through your character. Maybe we should just stick with sex tape.

ArkansasCyndi, DAMN! The ONE THING my hand surgeon said I can't do is skydive. He said, "swim, jog, type, drive, as long as you're not drunk on Vicodin. But no skydiving."

However, we will not deduct points over it.

I once was going to illustrate and caption a line of greeting cards that would be targeted for men to buy. On the outside, for instance, would be a nicely drawn screwdriver and screw. Inside text: Me? (or after the breakup -- You).

I just don't see how to make them work for Wollie ;-)

Harley, you need to show up at some well-publicized event, and then you could show your coochie when getting out of a taxi wearing a short, short skirt and no undies. Think of all the Web hits you'd get!

I just love those "throwback to Basic Instinct" ideas, Karen.

And hollygee, I think you missed your calling. I don't know what your calling, is, but greeting cards could be in your future.

AP- Wollie Shelley brand manager for MediasRex resigned today after it was confirmed that she distributed explicit photos from the Super Bowl party at David Alexander’s home. Alexander, General Manager of Justin’s Department Store in Beverly Hills had no comment.

Shelley apparently took several photos with her cell phone at the party and then sent them to her entire address book. According to people who have seen the photos, The Alexanders have a large hot tub, serve jello shots, and have a sex swing in at least two bedrooms.

Ms. Shelley’s only comment was “You should never email after drinking or an Arizona touchdown.”

Several Adult Entertainment web sites are making offers to anyone who has the complete set of pictures...

What's a sex swing and where can I get one? Should I order several and give them away as contest prizes?
(pardon my ignorance.)

Oh God...trying to get my brain engaged after the Super Bowl party that I went to last night is difficult!!! Luckily, I lived, which is proof that the Steelers won!


I like the dating idea...how about eBay? Have Woolie discover the image of Polamalu in a fried egg, and auction it off?

Harley, I have just requested that my library order the book -- and they probably will! I was just thinking of Wollie and the card shop -- a Hallmark ad made me realize that card shops are off-limits for me because they usually sell balloons, too. Balloons led me to think of . . . other kinds of "balloons," which could be specially printed with promo ads for the book, a too-late warning about "safe sex" for whoever the murder victim is. I think condoms can also be inflated with helium for a "balloon bouquet" -- though I'd have to skip that event unless you buy the special non-latex kinds. Good luck with the new books, and congratulations on achieving such good karma about the divorce. I'm proud of you. And of course, I'd love to receive an ARC -- I have one of Elaine's in a place of honor in the living room of the eco-home. No selling on E-Bay unless I get truly destitute waiting to sell the condo.




Listen, Storyteller Mary, I appreciate the sentiment of no selling on eBay, but if I can help this country's economic growth by making money exchange hands, then I shall hold my head high.

I love the idea of Wollie's face being discovered in a fried egg or a grilled cheese sandwich. Although . . . no one knows what Wollie's face looks like. Hmm. I'm sure there's a way around this.

Harley, you make a point about the economy. At the Chicken Festival, Steve Otto contributed his signed copy of Jackie Torrence's _Jackie Tales_ for record-breaking high bits, $120+ I think. I don't know how he parted with it, but he figured it would help the River and Prairie Storyweavers budget, and it did!

I'm putting this out there (without reading ahead because it may be very obvious to everyone)...

Since most people OCHFTS, you could have sex in a public place with a certain blond spy.

Just sayin'.

record-breaking high bits?
That would be high bids, of course

First of all, it doesn't really matter how tall Daniel Craig is. Does anyone remember what Ava Gardner said about Frank Sinatra? (No, I'm not that old. I just read a lot.)

Harley, if Dr. Phil's wife can make a soap appearance to plug her book, why not you? As a matter of fact maybe Mary didn't die when the "C" from the Capwell hotel fell on her. (No this is not another one of my lame attempts to bring back Santa Barabra, I swear.)

Feature article LA Times, NY Times, Wall Street Journal, etc.: [title] Former Soap Star, Respected Actress, Best-Selling Author. [article] What most of the public (outside of LA or NYC, anyway) doesn't know about making film and television is the mind-numbing boredom of waiting for the next moments of a scene to be shot, while technicians fiddle with computers and set carpenters and lighting specialists tweak the setting. Harley Jane K has long found ways to amuse herself, and millions of loyal readers . . . etc.
OR, just get Regis really, really mad at you and tell a few reporters . . . .
OR, stalk blond Bond . . . that has to be worth something, although your kids might miss you while you're in lock-up.
GOOD LUCK! I'm sure we'll all help!

Another, trickier approach, might be to put out a bogus news item that you haven't been invited to be a featured speaker on any panels at the huge literary festivals in LA, NYC, Seattle, Miami, Dallas, etc., because other writers in your genre are too jealous of you and have asked you not appear. But . . . this might inadvertently step on a few toes.
Join the Rock-Bottom Remainders (the slow but fun route to greater sales)

Pardon me. I need to recover from those photos of the Love Swing. Uh, thank you, ArkansasCyndi. This explains the large box that Margie keeps in the supplies closet that she won't let me open.

Dear God in heaven.

Art Rooney had a child with Marilyn Monroe?

It would be OK for Blond Bond to wear the high heels.......problem solved and it's only 1PM!

Yeah Steelers!

Love swings, the must-have gadget for multi-taskers--have sex and work out, at the same time!

Now I will be laughing to myself all day, Cyndi. It's a good thing I work at home.

Yes. Blond Bond in heels. I can't believe no one's thought of that before.

And I bet you couldn't get Clive to wear heels, Michele. Not to promote any controversy here. Just saying.

Was it really necessary for Mr. Love Swing to have a mullet?

Mr Typepad hates me - I've tried to post 3 times.

Ramona, how much time did you spend critiquing the coiffures? Because that's certainly what I was looking at.

Harley, if no-one knows what Wollie looks like, then who are they to say she doesn't look like an eggplant?

My recollection from the books is that she's tall, blond, big boobs. There's probably more to her, but that's what I remember offhand. Not an eggplant.

I'm at work and amazingly have exercised restraint not to go to that swing site. I can imagine, although I'm probably wrong.

I just think that Ramona nailed it. The rest of us are just amateurs.

Josh, go to the swings. Go to the swings. Go to the swings.

Sorry, I'm practicing my hypnotism techniques.

I must be way out of it -- that swing just looks uncomfortable. . .

Storyteller Mary - I don't think the swing was designed for "comfortable"...It's more a "functional" design.

And Ramona - Those people at the swing site had hair???

Mary, its not more uncomfortable than the stirrups at the ob/gyn.

ok, I meant to say

not anymore uncomfortable


Thank you, Josh. Finally, someone appreciates my talents.

As for the Mr. and Ms. Love Swing, their hair was the only thing I could bear to look at without cringing.

And truly, is there anything more erotic and wildly sexy than the stirrups at the ob/gyn? For me that's the gold standard of Sex Furniture.

Harley, you crack me up.

Best of luck with the new book. I can't wait to read the next Wollie adventure.

Next contest, I'm giving away Sex Swings.

Yeah, with my luck, I'll win that! ( no hubby or boyfriend, can I sell it on ebay so I can buy books?)

what Ava Gardner said about Frank Sinatra?
Darlene, what did she say?

Pam, it has been a while since I dated, but I don't remember ever wanting to feel on a date the way I did in the gyn. office . . .

Sorry Harley to disappoint, I've been wrestling with this idea for the past 12 hours -

All I can think about is tying Wollie's greeting card business with Valentine's Day, which happens to be on a Saturday this year - perhaps if a guy wants to impress his gal,
he can purchase a voucher at their local bookstore to slip into an official Wollie IV St. Valentine's Day Greeting card.

Happy VD Day from a A Date You Can't Refuse?"

Um, well, the swings. I really don't know what to say other than ick, eesh, OMFG. Mullet or no, I'm just glad they took the photos after the big weight loss (and I can't get that visual out of my head anyway. I mean, good god, they were so overweight the swing was the only way they could have sex?).

Wollie is taken to a play at the Ahmanson by a friend of a cast member, who asks her to design a themed (you choose the theme) announcement for her wedding.

Hi Harley,

I think you should contact the Steelers and offer them a photo op. You holding a copy of The Date You Can't Refuse surrounded by the Steelers, who could refuse the Steelers anything right now? Yay Steelers!!!


the sex tape thing, sex always sells!!
(look what it did for Paris or Britney, oops, sorry bad examples)


Get someone, preferably someone you know,and have them make one of those online videos, you know, like the Obama girl, singing about how great Wollie is and how they can't get enough....it could work.


My son's idea: Get one or two of the Steelers to read your book (even if you have to give them a copy), then you and the couple of Steelers go on Larry King and sing the praise of Wollie!!

Have a panel of Steelers compete for a date with Wollie . . .


A couple of other ideas:

I'm from Illinois, so I feel it's okay to say this: You go on TV (you know, like David Letterman or Craig Ferguson) and claim that one of your bad guys is modeled after Blagojevich, everyone will want to read then!!

By the way, love the blog, gave it a shout out about a week ago on my blog, mentioned it trying to get more people to stop by and visit, therefore; more people will find out about your books as well as everyone elses!

Hey, Dot in Illinois, welcome and thank you!

Get that lady in Georgia who wants to ban Harry Potter to read your books. She will then attempt to ban yours, just in time for the release of the latest, the news articles will fan the flames and we'll all run to buy multiple copies!

Or, make the page just inside the back cover a pro-biotic chocolate bar, and advertise that the book is good for your health and your moods.

Harley, how about your (and Wollie as well) adventures with Daniel Craig (or Blond Bond) on the Russian ground? Moscow or St. Petersburg? The later is better since our President Mr. Medvedev and our Premier-Minister Mr. Putin both originally from this city. You will definitely dominate our first guys because they both are up to your shoulder, I think. I remember that you have already learned some Russian words and I'm willing to help you with the necessary vocabulary. (I laughed out loud every time I heard Russian commands from Cate Blanchett while watching "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull")
Only please be careful with our historical monuments and places. In "GoldenEye" they were crashed mercilessly. Hate watching it.
From Russia with love.
P.S. I couldn't get access to the Comments all day (Moscow time). Is it FSB (AKA KGB) doings? Big Brother is watching…Where are you, Harley?!!!!

Harley, Here is my attention getting idea. Make up a computer virus that will pop up on
everyone' s computer on March 17th with the first chapter of A DATE YOU CAN'T REFUSE. Everyone will be so engrossed with Wollie's
adventure (and trying to buy the previous Dating books) that no work would get done that day. Amazon.com and all bookstore web sites will be blogged, and all government agencies will be trying to find you, and hire Wollie. Everyone will be so impressed with this series of books, that they would not be able to find anyone to press charges,
sales will sky rocket, and all will be right in the world! I have enjoyed all of your Wollie Shelley novels, and would love an advanced copy. I can't wait 39 more days to read it!

Olietta, I have successfully distracted the KGB long enough for you to get your comments in. Kudos for your sustained effort!

Join Match.com and publicize the match between your favorite Steeler hunk with Wollie. Don't disclose the time or place of their first date, tho leak some information on the night of, of course. Have the two of them wake up in the bedding department of a large, expensive department store where all the ladies can enjoy viewing the hunk Wollie had last night!

been trying to find, if anyone won, since this is on your home page.

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