Lisa Scottoline makes me laugh and gives me hope. She irreverently refers to her ex-husbands as “Thing One” and “Thing Two.” Her second marriage ended about the same time her beloved daughter Francesca was born. Ms. Scottoline decided to leave her legal career behind to write fiction and be a mother to her daughter:
I figured you can’t get any broker than broke.
Turns out you can.
I wrote for the next five years, living on credit cards, nursing my baby by day and reading rejection letters by night. Yet it was a deliriously happy time of my life.
One clueless New York agent sent her a brutal rejection letter. Big mistake. She’s published 16 novels and has been on every best seller list that matters.
Why My Third Husband Will Be a Dog: The Amazing Adventures of an Ordinary Woman is a collection of her “Chick Wit” columns which are published in The Philadelphia Inquirer and on her web site.
Her success, however, didn’t happen overnight:
. . .my credit history ranged from Slow Pay to You Must Be Joking. . .
Eventually I paid back every penny of my debts, but my FICO score haunted me. I couldn’t get a credit card from Target and my books were bestsellers in Target. I don’t think this happened to James Patterson.
She’s a brilliant, feisty, funny, independent woman who wants to start an Eleanor Roosevelt-styled “tea bag” revolution to empower women:
. . .we’re strong enough to star in our own lives.
Y’all know this got to me:
Columbus. . .set out into uncharted territory, against all odds, risking his life to follow a dream, believing profoundly in himself, and God. . .he kept excellent notes. . .his crews were profoundly religious men. . .
They didn’t want to fall off the edge of the world. . .
Love is uncharted territory. So is life. We truly do not know what will happen to us tomorrow. All of it is unmapped to us, yet we sail on.
. . .make mistakes. . .capable of great cruelty and great kindness. . .meet those who love us and those who don’t. . .
We might not find exactly what we were looking for. . .
We are all of us explorers in this life.
Christopher Columbus reminds us to sail on, to have faith, and to trust that we won’t fall off. . .
She proposes we reframe Valentine’s Day to celebrate love ~ the unconditional rather than romantic kind ~ the secret to a wonderful life. She believes that every holiday and religion are essentially about love:
Raise a glass to someone you love, in celebration of an emotion that powers our best intentions, leads to our greatest happiness, and gives us the stories of the world’s greatest oepras, movies, and novels. . .
Find the love in your life, because it’s all around you. And if you can’t find it, make it yourself.
. . .the thing about love is that we can’t control whether we get it, but we can control whether we give it.
Her new King Charles Cavalier puppy Little Tony is her guru. He’s a “rolling ball of good will, positive energy, and fun.” He doesn’t whine. Nothing gets him down. He was able to win over Ms. Scottoline’s cranky Pembroke Welsch corgi Ruby, who had been on Prozac for awhile. Her dogs are “like Ambien, only with fur.”
If you or someone you know is having a hard time, Why My Third Husband Will Be a Dog would make an excellent holiday gift. The essays are short and packed with humor as well as wisdom and love. It will lift your spirits and warm your soul.