TADA! Except.

by Marinka on August 17, 2011

I’ve been writing this post in my mind for weeks. For months.

I’ve hinted about the Writing Project with my beautiful daughter, I’ve told you that I’ve had to unceremoniously replace her because she was dragging her feet and wasn’t getting what needed to be done fucking done.

And now I can reveal all.

Or most.

Fine, some.

It killed me to keep my mouth shut.

I wrote a children’s book. About how we came to adopt our beloved cat Nicki.

And my friend Peajaye, who you probably know and love from the comments and from being the author of that book over there in the sidebar (Under The Covers) did the illustrations.

The illustrations are so great that we’ve already had several fights about them along the lines of “I don’t understand why you had to steal my thunder and upstage me with the illustrations. And also, could you make the mom-character a little bit more beautiful? Think Trophy Wife! TROPHY WIFE WITH A HEART OF GOLD, I SAID!”

I’ve had so much fun doing the book and I’m so grateful to Peajaye for taking this project on and putting up with the constant “can the green be less greenish?” and “MAKE ME MORE BEAUTIFUL, DAMMIT! BLONDER! BLONDER!!!”

It has been a true collaboration and I feel lucky to have had such a great partner. (Oh, and lest you think that my daughter got left out in the cold, don’t worry about her. More about that $ituation $oon. After the lawyers have worked everything out.)

But as usual, I need your help.

And internal organs.

But I’ll settle for the help.

Peajaye and I have seen eye to eye on almost everything, but we cannot agree on the back cover.

Although to be fair, I never realized that books had back covers.

And we have two versions.

One contains scenes from the book.

And the other has a cat butt and a litter box.

So, yes, different.

I asked Mama to weigh in and she said, “definitely litter box. Enough protecting children all time. They must learn that life is more than fun, there is the shit, too.”

Which of course has its own brand of charm, but I wanted to take your temperature on this, too. (Albeit not rectally.)

So please tell me– which the better back cover:

This:

Or this:

We are self-publishing the book on Amazon, in the early fall.

You should probably commence trembling with anticipation.

One year ago ...

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{ 90 comments… read them below or add one }

Glamamom
Twitter:
August 17, 2011 at 11:50 pm

Is that butthole bleached? If so, I vote #2.

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the mama bird diaries
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 11:14 am

love that! Ditto to a bleached cat anus!!

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Brittany (BrittanyandTahn) August 17, 2011 at 11:53 pm

NOT the cat butt….

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Stasha
Twitter:
August 17, 2011 at 11:55 pm

I will ask my three year old tomorrow and return to you in the morning with the answer that shall represent your target audience.

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Stasha
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 2:33 pm

My son voted for the second one. I asked why and he said “cause I like it” so that’s that.

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Julie Mangano August 17, 2011 at 11:56 pm

Number 2 is my number 1. You know what I mean.

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Charlie Michelle August 18, 2011 at 12:07 am

I would totally vote for the cat butt -IF- it weren’t so…pink. It would be so funny with just a little pucker (God, I feel gross), but with the added color highlighting the whole thing, it creeps from adorably crude to uncomfortably graphic.

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Peajaye
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 12:19 am

THANK YOU. For the record, I drew a tasteful version of this, with the tail discretely covering the cat’s “personality,” but Marinka and Mama would have none of it.

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Marinka August 18, 2011 at 7:28 am

Oh, you’re not pinning this on me. At no time did I ask you to Bubblegum Pink Nicki’s butt.

That was your idea to poison everyone’s minds against the back view cover. Nicely played.

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Marta
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 9:33 am

I agree with Charlie Michelle. I love the cat butt, minus the extreme pinkness. Tone down the pink and the cat butt is the best!

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annie August 18, 2011 at 11:06 am

I was going to say the same thing. Love the idea of the cat butt! It’s is the back cover after all but the whole pink butthole thing is a little disturbing. For what it’s worth

Oh and CONGRATS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

the mama bird diaries
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 11:16 am

Yeah, the cat butt is a little too baboon if you know what I mean. Or whatever those monkeys are with the bright red bums.

Peajaye
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 12:42 pm

FYI, Marinka has final say on all aspects of this book – including color choices. In fact, she has asked me to change many colors on probably every page. But not a word about the cat butt, which she LOVED.

I had no idea what the back of a cat looked like in detail, so I googled and the images that came up were pink. If I had made it brownish, that would also have been gross, no? Blue? Yellow? Green? Purple?

I also feel the less-obscene-more-literary version of the back cover is not getting a fair showing here, since we don’t know what the blurbs will be. Also, to be fair to me, I was in favor of no blurbs, but larger versions of the “Catless,” “Almost Cat,” and “Cat!” graphics, which might give the reader a better sense of the book.

But it is Marinka’s vision (?) I am trying to execute here, and at least the feedback is providing me some ammunition to make the back cover slightly less traumatizing. So thank you.

BrassyDel
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 1:10 am

I’m jumping on this bandwagon, which is a sort of unfortunate turn of phrase, given the circumstances.

Cat butts should be drawn with a * or drawn… discreetly.

eevie August 19, 2011 at 11:24 am

Yes, me too! Cat butt, because that’s awesome, but not pink. Either a black * or the tail hiding it. Pink cat butts are nauseating.

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Zee August 19, 2011 at 6:21 pm

Good lord, Peajaye. I hope you cleared your browser history after googling cat anuses. Imagine THAT on tmz.

dusty earth mother August 18, 2011 at 12:15 am

Love the cat anus. But then you knew I would. And congratulations!!!!!!!

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Alexandra
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 12:56 am

I canNOT wait for you book, HOWEVER, please, no to Choice #2.

The pink rectal sphincter…just too much.

Thank you.

I’m so excited!!!!!! Yes, I will pre order, and yes, I will review and tweet and RT and do a giveaway.

I love how you make me laugh.

It’s gonna be so great.

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Jen August 18, 2011 at 1:00 am

I can’t even believe you have to ask. (clearly the cat butt wins)

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Camla August 18, 2011 at 1:07 am

No cat butt; yuck, yuck, yuck! I prefer #1

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Sonia August 18, 2011 at 1:32 am

Cat butt!! Cat butt!! But the pink rectum is gross, take it out :)) The favorite jokes of my 4 yr old and her friends revolve around poop so I think they would all just love this 😉

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Alison@Mama Wants This
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 1:43 am

Duh, cat butt!!!

So exciting! Cannot wait.

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Pig in the Kitchen
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 2:31 am

Well of course I was going to say cat butt to be all edgy, ironic and well just funny… but then I saw it. I agree it’s too pink and a bit gross, but actually what swung it was the three illustrations at the top of the other cover the ‘catless’ ‘almost cat’ and ‘cat’. that’s really cute and made me go ‘ahhh, i really must get this book.’ Et voila, a view from across the pond. x

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Kati
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 11:52 am

I loved those illustrations, too. But doesn’t kinda spoil the story and give away the ending? 😉

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angie
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 12:20 pm

give away the ending… is that a sphincter joke?

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P.K. August 18, 2011 at 7:19 am

I loved the idea of the cat butt, and then I saw it and vomited.

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Rainyday August 18, 2011 at 7:26 am

Both my boys chose the cat bum. The 5 year old says it’s because, “it’s the back of something” and the 3 year old says it’s “because I just like it.”

So there you go.

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christy August 18, 2011 at 7:36 am

I like the IDEA of the cat butt, but that depiction is just a tad too graphic for me! Sorry! I have a feeling I’m choosing wrong, again. Maybe you could re-do it so the tail is covering it a bit or something? It’s just IN YOUR FACE/(gross!)….

BUT – YAYAYAY on the book! And the collaboration! So freaking exciting! I will buy one for sure!!!

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Gdot August 18, 2011 at 8:47 am

Cat butt. I have a collection of cat butt fridge magnets you could use as inspiration.
And I appreciate the pink. In real life they aren’t always ‘pink’.

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the grumbles
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 8:53 am

i’m pro cat butt, but another vote here for toning down her pinkie jenna jameson bleach job.

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Becky
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 9:12 am

As much as I like a good piece of ass, I’m gonna go with #1.

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Travis August 18, 2011 at 9:13 am

2! 2! 2!! CAT BUTT.

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Mo
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 9:25 am

I love the REAR end… and although I hate to be all “censorish” I might tone down the prominence and pinkness of his…
Or maybe just put his tail down.

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Trix August 18, 2011 at 9:47 am

100% the cat butt… pink and all! I mean it is THE END of the book afterall… only makes sense!

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Ginnie August 18, 2011 at 9:54 am

A big fat YES! on the cat bum. Everyone needs a little cheek (ha! Pun intended) once in a while! 😉

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Ann
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 9:54 am

I agree with Mama. The (less pink) ayes have it.

Congratulations Marinka and Peajaye!

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Wendi
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 9:58 am

Peajaye worked in Hollywood for so long, that it’s no wonder he’s good at drawing assholes. (rimshot)

I like #1, just for marketing purposes.

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ChiTown Girl August 18, 2011 at 10:07 am

I think the second picture needs a nice nugget of cat poop being “deposited” in the litter. That would hide the bubblegum pink that everyone seems to object to, no?

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Lynn MacDonald (All Fooked Up)
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 10:18 am

I like the second one…anytime you show the cat’s ass it’s a best seller.

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Anna Lefler
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 10:26 am

Please tell me your cat’s butt is that cute in person.

And also I’m voting for it.

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Lisa Rae @ smacksy August 18, 2011 at 10:31 am

More market research:
Bob says, “The cat bottom because I like bottoms.”

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b a seagull
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 10:42 am

Nicky looks like her rump is winking. Cheery!

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Loukia August 18, 2011 at 10:47 am

OMG.

Number one, so I can be one of the funny and intelligent bloggers to write a little blurb about how awesome your book was!

Let me know when you want my address. xoxo

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anymommy August 18, 2011 at 11:10 am

I am trembling with anticipation!!

I’m not sure about the full frontal (backal?) cat ass, but my six year old? “I like the butt picture because cat’s are gross and mean.”

My boy.

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anymommy August 18, 2011 at 11:11 am

Oh. my. god. CATS. No apostrophe. You have no idea how desperately I tried to stop that comment. Now I can’t be on the back of the book. Pretend my six year old typed it too.

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Cheryl
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 11:31 am

Congrats & #2 (toned down).

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Andrea August 18, 2011 at 11:42 am

Gotta go with the cathole. Maybe just a demure little ‘x’ in the proper place instead of Bright! Pink! Anus? Either way, love it, can’t wait…my boy will love it because our adopted cat’s name is Nicki as well, but her ass is easily twice as big as the one in Peajaye’s picture! Congrats on the book!!

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joeinvegas August 18, 2011 at 11:45 am

Cat butt

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Kati
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 11:50 am

I like the first one. Don’t hit me, but I see enough upclose and personal cat butt in real life.

Also, I am so buying at least 2 copies of the book, I can’t wait!

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Twsited Domestic Goddess August 18, 2011 at 12:00 pm

Well it’s a kids book, and kids love all things poop related…..so I vote cat butt

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Laurie August 18, 2011 at 12:14 pm

I can’t believe I’m voting for cat butt.

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stephanie August 18, 2011 at 12:30 pm

Definitely the cat butt…So funny! Not sure if you watch Bob’s Burgers, but there’s a whole episode about animal Anuses and this looks like the art in that episode, which by the way made me laugh so hard I almost peed myself. So yes, Cat Butt fo sho!

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Tami August 18, 2011 at 12:53 pm

I polled my kids and they are both pro-cat butt. The boy (11) says there should be poo in the litter box. The girl (7) says maybe hang a “The End” sign from the tail to cover the “privates”. So there’s your demographic.

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Kati
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 7:01 pm

I love the girl’s idea!!!

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jonathan August 18, 2011 at 12:56 pm

I liked the idea of the cat butt too but the butthole becomesis the focuscat of the whole cover. I think if you removed it completely and left the rest of the cat, that would be perfect.

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magpie August 18, 2011 at 1:55 pm

given how many times i’ve seen that end of my cats, yeah, cat butt.

woot on the book!

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pam August 18, 2011 at 2:00 pm

I LOVE Tami’s daughters idea of a ‘The End’ sign covering the puckery pink butthole. The other one is a’ight but meh…

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Heather
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 3:16 pm

I gotta go with number one, just because I know my daughter would never get around to letting me read a book to her if it had a cat’s asshole on the back. She’d be too busy giggling about the cat butt.

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Tracy
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 3:20 pm

I don’t even know why you’re asking: you have to use the cat butt, obviously. I mean, hello? It’s perfect.

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anna see August 18, 2011 at 3:52 pm

the sphincter leaves me a little unsettled. Could the tail hang demurely down? Or could the sphincter be a little more muted in color?

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Heather
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 4:01 pm

Also, I think the cat’s butthole is staring at me. It’s kind of creeping me out.

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Marinka August 18, 2011 at 4:03 pm

That’s because it likes you, Heather. And wants to be your friend!

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Heather
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 4:07 pm

*shudder*

Please excuse me while I go whimper in a corner.

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Marinka August 18, 2011 at 4:09 pm

Of course! Take your time. Cat Butt will be right here, waiting. And watching you.

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Sophie@Fabrications August 18, 2011 at 4:11 pm

The pictures aren’t loading for me, which is totally unfair and probably other country-discriminant, so I can’t see how pink the cat bum is. Still, I vote for the cat bum. The pink one.

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adil August 18, 2011 at 4:29 pm

First, congratulations. The book sounds awesome. Now, about your question: I was going to vote “cat butt” until I saw the image and realized that instead of a cute fuzzy cat butt, it’s a bright angry asshole. Wonderfully drawn, of course, but an asshole, all the same. And it kind of skeeves me out. To be fair, though, I’m sure my 6 year old would love it.

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shannon larue August 18, 2011 at 5:04 pm

cat butt! for sure!

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Courtney August 18, 2011 at 7:34 pm

Love the cat butt!!

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kimberly August 18, 2011 at 7:51 pm

That cat has hemmoroids – is all anyone will say.

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Eric
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 8:05 pm

What about combining the two? Because I think it follows the progression if you went with 4 panels and made cat-ass the last one and maybe run the panels diagonally across the cover. Then you have a little room to put Cat blurbs over and below the panels.

Or maybe 2 panels columnleft with cat blurbs to the right of them and below that, 2 panels columnright with blurbs to their left.

Everybody wins.

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sdnightnurse
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 9:12 pm

I love the cat butt.

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tracy
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 10:36 pm

Go cat butt! But not so pink. Loved the sign idea..and the poop in the box.

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Olga
Twitter:
August 18, 2011 at 10:44 pm

Oh I spend a half an hour choosing a shampoo in the pharmacy and you ask me about the back cover? I’ve been using nypl for two years (you can get almost any book through their website) but I’ll buy your book. That’s how I love you.

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Ilana
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 12:19 am

This is a tough choice. Mainly because I would like to write a Cat Blurb. But I’m gonna have to go with Cat Butt. Because, REALLY. How could anyone not?

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The Flying Chalupa
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 1:01 am

VERY EXCITING! And yes to the cat butt. His little pink sphincter is so adorable. Wow, I just totally grossed myself out.

But hey, a book. So, so cool.

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steph August 19, 2011 at 8:26 am

I asked my Brownie troupe and the shrieks of laughter and shear joy the mere mention of a cat butt received tells me there is a clear winner here.

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Jessica
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 11:06 am

My three year old voted for the cat butt. When I asked why he said “Well its a butt and its funny.” So there you go–from my three year old to you 🙂

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Zee August 19, 2011 at 11:15 am

I like the idea of the cat butt, but the reality is just a little too…..vivid.

Unfortunately, I see much more of my cat’s butt than I’d like. She must be proud of something back there. Or she’s just really weird.

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Cindy Thomas August 19, 2011 at 12:07 pm

5 yr old daughter? cat butt, but there should lots of poop
8 yr old daughter? cat butt- that’s gross but funny, mom!
11 yr old daughter? oh my god, are you gonna buy this? Is this for kids? That cat butt is way nasty, mom. Why don’t you write a book so I can buy more minature glass animals for my collection?
45 yr old me? So cat butt voting. My 11 yr old is too mature.

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Melissa A. August 19, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Back cover – mom kneeling (gorgeously) next to the litter box with dish cloves on, holding cat scoop and clothes pin on nose. Or even a hospital mask…both work.

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Yuliya
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 4:15 pm

Can we have combination option? With cleverest cat blurb covering angry sphincter area?

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Megan August 19, 2011 at 4:34 pm

First: Squeeeeeeee on writing a book! Secondly, will the second cover make sense after I’ve read the book? Is the cover the view from the other side? Because if it is then I get it. If not, I love Yuliya’s idea. I’m sure she’ll give it to you for only a small portion of the profits from the book. But don’t quote me on that because I don’t know her and she could be a total shark. She’s your friend.

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Megan August 19, 2011 at 4:35 pm

Not that I’m implying that YOU are a shark… I mean you would no better than I would if she is one…

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b a seagull
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 6:37 pm

Cats are all nosy butt-inskys.

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elizabeth August 19, 2011 at 7:57 pm

Cat butt and litter box but without the asshole part.

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P.K. August 19, 2011 at 9:11 pm

Let me guess — we have to actually BUY a book to find out the final decision?

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The Culture Mom August 20, 2011 at 11:07 pm

The cat butt and mazel tov!

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From Belgium August 21, 2011 at 5:45 am

I vote cat but

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JK August 21, 2011 at 11:04 am

Sorry. I hate the thought of that lying around on my coffee table between reads.

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teddi b August 21, 2011 at 7:26 pm

Definitely the butt.

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