Maryjane Fahey and Caryn Beth Rosenthal have been there. Dumped. And they know it sucks. But now they’re using their heartbreak for good.
The writers both found themselves suddenly single one Fourth of July weekend (talk about a happy Independence Day!), and a dynamic duo was born. Not that it seemed that way at the time.
Like your best fairy godsisters, Fahey and Rosenthal aren’t afraid to tell you there’s no magic wanding your way to happily-ever-after. We can’t all make like “precious Liz” (their words, though I wish they were mine) and get paid to take a year off to traipse around the world Eat Pray Love style. But what they offer in their no-nonsense, no-recovery-myth-left-unbusted tale of moving on and loving it is a lot more practical and a hell of a lot funnier than any spiritual quest you can shake a talking stick at.
I joined the authors at their New York pub party, held, where else, but at an actual pub. (Women with the moxie to write “a grown-up guide to gettin’ off your ass and over your ex in record time” don’t mess around with petit fours and room temp tap water.) Over our shared appreciation of martini glasses–and the various beverages, adult and non, that can be served in them–I asked them a thing or three, Book End Babe style.
Q: I love your take on closure. (The title of chapter four: “Closure–huh?” Right up there with the book’s subtitle for clarity, don’tcha think?) How did we ever get the idea there was such a thing?
MJ: ‘Closure’ next to ‘cougar’ is one of my least favorite words. Really. Overused, overexpected–and not just with men, with anything. In our heads, we write a script of what we want our men to say to us, and it’s never going to happen.
CB: Such bullshit. It’s like, “What do you think is going to happen?”
MJ: So what you need to do is find closure with yourself and move on.
CB: Just close that door. You will get closure when you’re marching down that fuckin’ street with your red lipstick on in your high heels and feeling good with life.
MJ: When you find your joy again.
Q: What’s the best thing you’ve done since you’ve gotten off your ass and over your ex?
CB: Written a book!
MJ: For me, it was on my to-do list to be more creative.To do all the things I had been on my stupid ex to do. After we broke up, and I started taking care of me, I started knocking things off that list. Like writing this book.
Q: What was your process like?
CB: We started meeting once weekly. We taped it.
MJ: Then we decided it needed shape.
CB: Maryjane insisted we put our stories in. That’s what I think changed the whole thing. We wrote from the heart. We’re real women, we have a funny bone, and we’re sassy.
Q: From the BEB favorites’ file: favorite “forget the diet” dessert?
MJ: I’m not a sweets person, but if I were to do sweets, I’d have chocolate mousse. But I’d much rather have a huge platter of French fries.
CB: I don’t ever have a diet to forget. But I love canollis.
Q: Favorite book?
MJ: Lolita and all things Nabokov. No one compares. I am reading a book of his poetry now, and it slays me nightly.
CB: Skinny Bitch changed my world because of one sentence about getting rid of the toxic people in your life. A vegan book and that one line hit home! I dumped wings, burgers and my ex a month after reading it.
Q: Favorite literary figure?
MJ: Scarlett O’Hara. I love the girl’s pluck. I love her determination. I adore the scene when she vows, holding the soil in her hands, to never be poor again. (Of course, I am thinking of the gorgeous and mad Vivien Leigh in the film on that one.) It’s also the first book that drew me into the joy of reading as a kid.
CB: Heathcliff has never had a limp dick. He’s romantic and sexual–that’s how I like my men—showing up at the door at attention, and by that I mean flag raised and ready to roll. A take charge confident dude. Most certainly a happier version of Heathcliff would be mighty fine!
Dumped is filled with amazing advice from amazing women–and even a few men. Dedicated to Anne Boleyn, “the most famous dumped chick of all time who will always win the ‘worst breakup ever’ contest,” it features a quiz on the dreaded red flags and a helpful multi-media guide to getting back in the groove–from “Deep Ones” to “Pick Me Ups” to the badass and bawdy. For more about Maryjane Fahey, Caryn Beth Rosenthal and Dumped, check out dumped411.com