There’s Something About SKINNY

You may have detected a theme to this week’s posts in praise of SKINNY: this book is special. Now, all of the Muses’ books are special. Seriously. But there’s something which resonates in SKINNY that’s truly amazing. I guess you could say in the spirit of Ben Stiller and Cameron Diaz, “There’s something about SKINNY.”

I first got to read the opening pages of Skinny when Donna was feverishly working on the rest of the manuscript.  Like the others, I was blown away. And honestly, this is impressive because I like contemporary girl self-growth novels even less than I like historical romances (I respect them, I just don’t enjoy many of them). It had all the elements of a good story…instant tension, a likeable/flawed main character, and a fantastic voice.

Except there was more. Something else. Like a song that goes on brain-repeat, the story stuck in my head. Though I couldn’t identify why. The following Spring, once Donna was ready for beta-readers, I dug into the manuscript and, good Lord, ‘the something’ got stronger culminating in this beautiful, tear-jerk of a scene. (I mean, not that I cried, seriously…stop staring at me).

And I wasn't the only one who felt it. As she sent out queries, the responding agents fervor was mind-boggling. No one was surprised when the manuscript went to auction. Or was presented at the BEA Buzz panels. Of course, editors and industry professionals would feel ‘the something’ of SKINNY like all the rest had. Even now, as I read reviews of the book, I nod my head and think, “yep, this reviewer felt ‘the something’ too.”

As I planned how to write this post, one question kept popping up: What is ‘the something’ about SKINNY?

And I think I figured it out.

I’m not unique in mentioning the fact that everyone has this blasted voice telling us we aren’t this…or we’re too much of that. While this is a universal – almost primal – shared human experience, ‘the something’ of SKINNY is even more.

What Donna does is personify this self doubt into a goth pixie. She gives insecurities a voice, a face, and an attitude. And I found that it’s much easier to tell an imaginary fairy to shut the hell up, than it is to tell a vague, faceless voice that sounds just like you.

In fact, when I’m being particularly hard on myself, I’ll email the Muses, “Skinny’s screaming is all I hear today.” Within minutes they respond with, “Tell that biz-nitch to shut up.” (or something significantly more eloquent, but you get the idea).

It doesn’t always quiet her down for long, but sometimes just a few minutes of silence is all I need to rally. And that is ‘something’ I’ll forever be thankful to SKINNY for teaching me.


I remember when you used to do your hair like that.

You were always so jealous.

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