Twang: a novel by John Schlimm
By SMW Staff
Country Music Legend Salome Field and her younger sister, Willa Field, clawed their way to the top of the music charts where they dominated as The Field Sisters. This was in spite of a devastating secret buried deep beneath carefully-crafted images, infamous catfights, and before a brush with death forced Salome to retire and left Willa struggling with a solo career, estranged husband, and new love interest. Now “cured,” Salome, with her womanizing husband/manager Derk by her side, positions herself and a reluctant Willa for an unforgettable comeback, unless the revelation she’s been desperately hiding finally destroys their lives and careers forever.
Across town…Not since Tim and Faith has a couple so captivated fans as have Thad Evans and Hope Tanner. With that bankable girl-next-door look and angelic voice, Hope is about to make a shocking announcement that will send the entertainment world into a tailspin. Her Country heartthrob husband, Thad, becomes increasingly annoyed by his wife’s actions as he closely guards a few of his own red-hot skeletons in the closet.
On the flip side of the celebrity machine is Nat Oldham, the former Southern beauty queen turned publicist, whose company, Headline Publicity, currently represents the eccentric and savvy firebrand Salome Field. Nat’s ultimate goal, however, is to promote an unknown act to superstar status and become Publicist of the Year. Enter The Border Babes, a wild, sexy, and untamed quartet of Country Music chicks who are about to turn Nashville on its head.
Meanwhile, Salome’s ego-driven son, Ashley Field, strives to establish himself as a serious actor in “Hollywacked” (as his mother calls it), contrary to a type-cast, A-List status that depends more on his last name than on his mediocre acting abilities and an insatiable desire to screw practically anything that moves.
Finally, there’s Billie Blotter, the famous columnist for Country Crooners Magazine, who has earned the trust of every superstar in town. Working under the public premise that he’s compiling the ultimate “tribute” book in the industry, Billie secretly begins to write the ultimate tell-all that will shatter the squeaky-clean image of Music City USA once and for all.
About the Author
JOHN SCHLIMM is a former celebrity publicist and professor of public relations who has worked with some of the biggest superstars during his tenure in Nashville and throughout his time in The Vice President’s Communications Office during the Clinton Administration. In addition, John is the international award-winning author of several books, including The Ultimate Beer Lover’s Cookbook (awarded “Best Beer Book in the U.S.” and “Best Beer Book in the World” by Gourmand International), The Seven Stars Cookbook (named one of the “Best Cookbooks in the U.S.” by Gourmand International), The Pennsylvania Celebrities Cookbook, The Straub Beer Cookbook, The Straub Beer Party Drinks Handbook, Straub Brewery, Corresponding With History, and other titles. His next book, The Tipsy Vegan, will be released this fall. He has traveled the country speaking about cooking, entertaining, and public relations, and has been featured on such national media outlets as The Ellen DeGeneres Show, QVC, NPR, Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food, and Fox & Friends. He also holds a Master’s Degree from Harvard University.
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Opening Number: Prologue
Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, TN
“I look fabulous, don’t I!”
Salome Field was acting every bit the “Country Music Superstar” she insisted on being called in press releases, articles, on-air segments, and everywhere else she happened to be mentioned. She sat completely straight in her dressing room chair, a stickler for perfect posture, surrounded by calming aromatherapy candles.
She was closely scrutinizing every movement made by her personal hairdresser and makeup artist, who were buzzing around her with brushes and compacts, lipstick and hairspray. The self-proclaimed “recovering perfectionist” still had to make sure everything was just right.
Her red hair dyed to show up on-air more realistically than it appeared in person; her porcelain doll complexion marred only by a subtle scar below her right eye; and the longest eyelashes her makeup artist could find combined to fool even the closest observer into believing this legend of a certain age was, indeed, ageless.
“Fernando,” Salome told her hairdresser, “I can still see the scars around my face; you need to bring my hair forward more.”
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