Thanks to everyone who sent such nice, supportive emails about the miseries about being misunderstood in print....and let me just state, once more for the record, that really, it's not that bad. Writing novels has allowed me to do the thing I love most in the world, and get paid for it. Plus, I get to travel all around, meeting readers who tell me that I made them laugh, and cry, and think. It's pretty amazing, and nothing that a few sour grape-y newspaper pieces could ever come close to ruining.

And for those of you who found the blog yesterday, courtesy of Jim Romenesko's Medianews column, rest assured: we aren't always bitter around here. Mostly, we talk about reality TV, and good books and movies, and celebrity follies, and we are happy. Haaappppy. Haaaappppy. OBEY MY DOG! Happy.

Okay. Sorry. Having a Zoolander moment.

I just got back from Portland, Maine, which was a revelation. I will admit that my perceptions of Maine were based largely on a recent re-reading of the collected words of Caroline Chute, in which the men are unemployed, the women are pregnant and everyone's broke and miserable. So there I was, wandering around Old Port, which is full of great shops and boutiques and art galleries and Internet coffee bars, wondering, "Where are all the angry inbred people?"

Not at the Portland Public Library, where I did a brown-bag lunch reading for about a hundred very enthusiastic people who laughed in all the right places (actual guffaws as opposed to polite chuckles) and were warm and friendly and not at all offended when I used the F word. I've finally gotten to the place where I enjoy the readings totally and completely -- just in time for the tour to end. Sigh.

But at least, for once, I didn't have to flip between The Amazing Race and The Bachelor. Oh, no. I got back to Philadelphia in time for three glorious hours of non-stop entertainment. Well, maybe an hour and a half, as The Bachelor finale was stretched thinner than double-ply cashmere. The Bachelor's dad was one creepy old dude, and The Bachelor's Mom worries me -- what woman wants a former beauty-pageant judge as a mother-in-law? Last but not least: The Bachelor's loft was not as cool as he thinks it is. And his restaurant? I think TGI Friday's called. They want their concept back.

Jen