So I splurged a little on a dress for a meeting with my publisher and the very, very writer-friendly people at Barnes & Noble in fabulous downtown Manhattan.

the dress I splurged on

And okay, I splurged on the shoes, too. And, um, the bag. As a working writer, 90% of my clothes are the kind of thing you wear to clean out the garage. The other 10% of my wardrobe looks more like this. And how did I earn this hot little number?

See for yourself. This is a shot of me at a booksigning–yes, a booksigning–at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. The day was organized around an air show, and there were tables and booths set up in the hangars along the air strip. I found myself sharing a table with an army ranger and his pet, Roxanne the Snake. The ranger wanted me to hold his snake. I said no. I hid behind my tower of unsold books. He insisted, so I told him I would only hold his snake if I sold all these books. (I never sell out at a signing.) But people kept buying books, and I was down to 3, so the ranger bought them all and I had to make good on my promise to hold his snake.

The snake seemed to like me. The ranger did not, because I told him his snake felt like a purse.

Anyway. Here I am with Roxanne, smiling through my inner silent screams of horror, earning any damn dress I want. For life. So there:

Roxanne the snakeRoxanne the snake

 

Diane von Furstenberg has to get her inspiration somewhere, right?

Shop on!

 Special bonus material–I spotted this on Story Broads:
I want a red dress.
I want it flimsy and cheap,
I want it too tight, I want to wear it
until someone tears it off me.
I want it sleeveless and backless,
this dress, so no one has to guess
what’s underneath. I want to walk down
the street past Thrifty’s and the hardware store
with all those keys glittering in the window,
past Mr. and Mrs. Wong selling day-old
donuts in their café, past the Guerra brothers
slinging pigs from the truck and onto the dolly,
hoisting the slick snouts over their shoulders.
I want to walk like I’m the only
woman on earth and I can have my pick.
I want that red dress bad.
I want it to confirm
your worst fears about me,
to show you how little I care about you
or anything except what
I want. When I find it, I’ll pull that garment
from its hanger like I’m choosing a body
to carry me into this world, through
the birth-cries and the love-cries too,
and I’ll wear it like bones, like skin,
it’ll be the goddamned
dress they bury me in.

–Kim Addonizio