I started writing “Kiss and Tell” almost two years ago now, around the time Britney Spears was having her melt down, Tom and Katie were getting hitched and every celebrity and her dog was giving birth to the miracle baby they thought they’d never have. It was back in a time, when I had no children, no large financial commitments and an excess amount of free time. I was actually looking for distractions. That’s where the tabloids came into play. It’s easy to run into them if you’ve got a moment to spare. Copious quantities litter our supermarkets, our news agencies and even our bookstores.
My sister and I used to work very close to each other. We’d meet up for lunch every day at Borders which was also close to where we both worked. This book store/cafe seemed liked the perfect midday getaway. And it was. Even the smell was an enticement. Brand new books and freshly ground coffee, my two favourite aromas blended into one.
I used to marvel at how much space in the store was devoted simply to magazines and of those, how many were tabloids. The number of stories that centred around Nicole’s baby bump was astounding. I began to wonder what it would be like to be someone like Nicole Kidman. To have everything you did constantly under a microscope. It couldn’t be comfortable. It could even be dangerous, disturbing… damaging. What if media coverage like that wasn’t used for promotion but revenge?
But the biggest tabloid stories are always about weddings -exclusive first pictures of man and wife. I wondered, how did Tom and Katie deal with falling in love with the whole world watching? How much of what was said about them true? Threads of a story started to appear in my head. But I needed a hero.
I have always loved jazz music and in particular Michael Buble. At the time, his album, “It’s Time,” lived in my car. I listened to it constantly. My favourite song, was “Home.” I guess that’s how my hero, Max Deroux was born. If I was going to write about a celebrity, it had to be someone I would admire, so I chose a jazz singer. I wrote two songs for Max – “Blue Angel” and “The Other Half of You.” If you ever, happen to listen to Michael Buble’s song, “Home” you may notice that my lyrics for “The Other Half of You” fit in time with the music. As this was the sound I was going for, I wrote my song to the beat of “Home.” Try listening to it with my words some time!
My heroine Alexis Banks wasn’t inspired by any particular celebrity. I imagined her to look a lot like Anne Hathaway but her personality was supposed to be just pure guts. Here was a girl who would always strive for the best, never give up and never let go. I wanted her to be young but wise, strong but vulnerable. Alexis Banks evolved on the page along with the story and she turned out to be more than a match for Max Deroux.
I hope you enjoy this story as much as I enjoyed writing it.