The Friday Five!

1. Well, it’s official. I knew changes were coming, but I don’t LIKE change, especially in the morning when I am not fully caffeinated. But, yes: George Stephanopoulos is replacing Diane, and JuJu Chang is replacing Chris, who, in my opinion, deserved his own last day and not a kind of “don’t let the door hit you on the way out” in the midst of Diane’s big celebratory farewell. Clearly, though, nobody is listening to me. I do LOVE me some Juju Chang, though. So clearly, even when the higher-ups shut a door (and ask you not to let it hit you as you exit) they open a window. So, welcome George and Juju. I will do my best to adjust. Starting Monday. Today, I reserve the right to just get all verklempt.

2. In other TV news, the Top Chef finale was Wednesday night. But, because I am super lame, I just couldn’t manage to stay up and watch it live. So yesterday, I had to do the whole news media blackout thing, so I wouldn’t see a spoiler of who won. It was HARD. I couldn’t read Google News all day, and now I know I am kind of addicted to that, which I guess is helpful. But last night, we FINALLY got to sit down and watch. And I don’t want to ruin it for any of you who haven’t had a chance yet to watch it, so I will just say I was not really happy with the outcome. It was kind of like Project Runway: I understood why they picked the person they did, but it would not have been my personal choice. I will leave it at that.

3. I’ve written here before about how I am kind of obsessed with lipstick and lipgloss. My favorite brand, for years, has been Stila, for all kinds of reasons, but especially because it was the ONLY brand that didn’t have some kind of drying agent in it that, apparently, I am kind of allergic to. But I just got some new lipstick from Stila and now I’m having a reaction. What’s up with that? Does this mean I have to abandon Sephora altogether and start buying my lip stuff at Whole Foods? Oh, please say no. I don’t think I can quit that place, allergies or not.

4. It was announced yesterday that Kirkus Reviews, one of the big book reviewing magazines, is being shut down. It’s right up there with Booklist, Horn Book and PW when you’re waiting for reviews of a new book, and totally nervous about what people will think of it. I can’t believe that Kirkus is being shuttered, especially since I FINALLY managed to get a good review out of them for Along for The Ride. They gave me a star! I should have known it was the beginning of the end for them. It’s like the center could not hold, or something. Oh, well.

5. Speaking of writers and writing, this week Amazon announced their annual Breakthrough Novel Award contest, and this year, there’s a prize for YA fiction as well. And guess who is listed as a judge on their “panel of experts” ? Stop laughing! I’m really excited to be part of this contest, and I’m looking forward to reading the finalists in the spring. If you have a novel–General Fiction or YA—and want to enter, go here for more info. And good luck!

Okay, I’m grabbing some tissues and my coffee and sitting down to catch the last half hour of GMA. Have a great weekend, everyone!

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