Nerve: Truth or Dare…The Videos

Well, if you’ve been paying attention this week (and you have been paying attention this week, right?) you’ll have been looking forward to today’s unveiling of all the video dares we’ve done here at EMU’s Debuts and Friday the Thirteeners in celebration of Jeanne Ryan’s debut novel NERVE!

Therefore I won’t bore you and go to commercial or mention any other non-dare related material here, drawing out the tension until showing you the actual dares. That would be mean. It would be similar to how they always cut to commercial on reality shows and then they come back from commercial and spend an additional 20 seconds or so repeating the teaser from right before they went to commercial. It’s just mean to do that, drawing out the reveal of the Nerve dares would be like that, don’t you think?

I know, it’s a rhetorical question.

Did you know that the term ‘rhetorical question‘ has a storied and wonderful history? Let’s discuss…

Henry Denham in the 1580s invented a “rhetorical question mark” for use at the end of a rhetorical question. (yes, I had to look that up)

What?

That would be mean?

Drawing out the reveal of the dares?

Would I do that?

Who, me?

The Dare: Re-enact your worst experience at a writers conference.

The Daree: Jeanne Ryan (accompanied by her sister Elizabeth, who shall not be held responsible for the contents of this video.)

The Set-up: Years ago, I participated in my first “First Page Review.” You know, that popular conference workshop where industry professionals read the first page of a manuscript aloud and provide their spontaneous feedback. My submission was from an adult story about the devil having a mid-life crisis. (I know, I know. Actually, I should get BONUS dare points for letting any part of this be read in public.) Anyway, I got there early and had the perfect seat in the second row, where I got to witness something like this…

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The Dare: Make a vlog of yourself singing your favorite theme song.

The Daree: Peter Adam Salomon (who, because he can not sing, will be played in the vlog by his five-year old son, Adin, singing HIS favorite theme song)

The Set-up: I can’t sing. No, scratch that…I love to sing. But I can’t. You don’t want to hear me sing. Plus, well, I can’t sing. Adin, on the other hand, loves to sing and so, while driving the other day, he just started singing one of the many theme songs from Pokemon. Which he obviously loves. So I figured I’d share it here. Why? Um…because I can…

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The Dare: Make a vlog of yourself reading a scene from your book in Pig Latin.

The Daree: L.B. Schulman

The Set-up: Not only must the scene be spoken in the highly-valued foreign language, but Jeannie Mobley-Tanaka has the added request that it be one of the “hotter” scenes from the book. Now because L.B. was (briefly) an acting major in college, she will draw from everything she’s learned here. Lucky you!

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The Dare: Read your favorite scene from a children’s book, using a special prop from that scene.

The Daree: Tara Dairman

The Set-up: MATILDA by Roald Dahl is one of my favorite books, and I’ve always loved the scene where the school’s evil headmistress (“The Trunchbull”) punishes a student for stealing a slice of cake by putting him up on stage in front of his classmates and…well, in case you haven’t read it, you can just watch the video to find out what happens.

P.S. I never want to eat chocolate cake again in my life.

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The Dare: Read something aloud that you wrote when you were younger.

The Daree: Laurie Boyle Crompton

The Set-up: Managed to dig up a copy of an old movie review column I co-wrote with a friend when we were seventeen. My hoarding tendencies have been validated once again. Extra points for having a nasty cold and yet powering through on this vicious dare.

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The Dare: Read something aloud that you wrote when you were younger.

The Daree: Peter Adam Salomon

The Set-up: Yes, I know: Laurie did a MUCH better job than I did on this particular dare and I hadn’t planned on doing my own Dare after ‘hiding’ behind my adorable 5 year old son up above. But…I felt a little guilty for avoiding the embarrassment (yet still oddly entertaining) features of these dares and since I did volunteer to be the one to coordinate this final Friday debut of all of our dares…well, I should participate as well. Right? So…I did sort of cheat by using the same dare as Laurie but really…you don’t want to hear me sing.

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The Dare: Write a letter to your high school crush

The Daree: Tara Lazar

The Set-up: When I was a junior I got bowled over by this handsome Italian kid walking down the hallway in a taxi-driver’s cap and those cool glasses that changed from clear to dark depending on the light (which, in hindsight, weren’t very cool). I followed him after school to see where his locker was and scrawled “I LOVE YOU” on it. This took a lot of NERVE because he was a year younger than I was, and even though senior quarterbacks could date freshman cheerleaders, it was TABOO for a junior girl to even LOOK AT a sophomore boy. But I didn’t care. I called his house repeatedly, much to the annoyance of his mother, who never put him on the line. She was old-school Italian and thought girls should never be so forward. Again, I didn’t care. I had an enormous crush. Eventually we dated, but it was ridiculous non-dating…making out in the hallway between classes. I guess you’d call it a typical teen tale…

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The Dare:  Write a love poem to an inanimate object and deliver it in dramatic fashion.

The Daree: Lynda Mullaly Hunt

The Set-up: I just love doorknobs, don’t you? Poor things get taken for granted all. The. Time. But not this writer. No, siree. I love ’em–one in particular. But, he loves another. In this complicated world of love, things are never easy… <sigh>

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The Dare: Perform an interpretive dance to a scene being read from your novel

The Daree: Jeannie Mobley

The Set-up:  Much has been made on this blog (all silly) about the fact that some chickens come to an unfortunate end in my novel. I’ve always suspected people are laughing at my chickens. So I wanted to take this opportunity to make everyone understand how bitter and tragic the scene truly is. This should do the trick:

And now for the fun part, where YOU, our wonderful readers, get to join in on the fun!

Anyone who comments on either this blog or Friday the Thirteeners will be entered to win a drawing for a signed copy of NERVE, one for each blog, so folks who comment in each place will be entered in both contests!

Let us know what your favorite dare was or which one you thought required the most nerve. If you really want to play along leave us the link to a video of YOU doing one of these!

Go ahead, I dare you…

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78 Comments

Filed under Book Promotion

78 responses to “Nerve: Truth or Dare…The Videos

  1. This is THE best blog post ever–on any topic, by any blogger, at any time! Kudos, Peter, Lynda, Jeannie, Natalie, Tara, L.B., Laurie, and, especially Jeanne, for writing such an er, um, inspiring book.

    Like

  2. What interesting dares! What NERVE to put yourselves out there! Great post and good luck with the challenge!

    Donna L Martin
    http://www.donnalmartin.com
    http://www.donasdays.blogspot.com

    Like

  3. No words, guys. I have no words for what I just saw.

    Like

  4. Everytime I get the urge to break my diet and eat chocolate cake I’m going to watch Tara’s video again. That should help a lot. I am awed by the talent in this group AND over at Friday the 13ers. But of course, we win the challenge.

    Like

  5. You don’t really expect us to be able to pick a favorite, right? I mean, it’s just too mind-bogglingly awesome as a group. But if I had to pick the top three things that will stay with me the longest, I’m going to have to go with: Jeannie Mobley’s beautiful dress, Tara Lazar’s ability to convince me she truly is a high school junior — and one with some seriously awesome nerve, and Tara Dairman’s ability to read a story with her mouth entirely stuffed with cake.

    I am now going to sit and enjoy replaying it all in my mind.
    Congratulations Jeanne Ryan! Clearly NERVE brings out the best there is!!

    Like

  6. Oh, and the best thing about my video, in case you didn’t notice, is that if you look close, you can see that one of my cats is sitting under the tree with her back to me. She never once turns around or acknowledges the fact that I’m dancing around the back yard behind her. She is using her super-cat power of ignoring all the way through.

    Like

    • That is truly awesome. Not only did you do an expertly communicative interpretive dance, but your cat did as well! There’s nothing that says, “you are embarrassing me” like the furry curve of a cat’s back.

      Like

  7. OMG this was so much fun!!! My daughter thought the video with the One Direction song was pretty funny, and I thought Tara eating an entire cake (urp!) took a lot of NERVE! But we both have to say, Jeannie Mobley really laid it all out on the line with her interpretive dance. With chickens. Best. Blog. Ever!

    Like

  8. L.B. Schulman

    Oh, these are wonderful. I can’t vote because I am an Emu, but several things became clear to me. For example, I have made up my mind about my vote for president (go Peter Salomon) and that I really can’t tell the difference between good and bad writing because the poem to the doorknob made me cry and the devil book was devilishly intriguing and Laurie Boyle Compton’s review persuaded me to put that movie on Netflix. Oh, and that Tara Lazar has great unexplored comedic talents. And Jeannie Mobley? Well, that was, um, interesting; I am still reeling from the emotional significance of it. Natalie Dias Lorenzi’s video was boppingly good and heartwarming, and Tara D. ingested way too many calories in her dare. As for me, all I can say is “Ongratscay otay ooyay ona ervenay, eannejay!”

    Like

  9. Erin E. Moulton

    That was hilarious, guys :). I can’t decide which one I liked best. Tara did eat an entire chocolate cake, so that says a lot, but then there was the door knob poem and interpretive dancing and, wow, just wow.

    Like

  10. Joshua

    Lynda’s made me laugh loudest, Peter, your kid was just adorable (and sounded slightly British to my untrained ear :)), and I have no doubt that L.B. took great joy in her rendition. You all are brave souls (but can you spell Mephistopheles… I can’t without Google), but I think the bravest was Tara. My fellow students and I once dared our mechE tech to eat a dozen Krispy Kremes in an hour. He didn’t quite make it (we even provided milk, nice people that we were). Tara showed her masticating chops. The Joey Chestnut of the writing world?

    Like

  11. I LOVE YOU ALL (more than Lynda loves her door knob and more than Tara loves Tony!)!

    Like

  12. Ellen Oh

    Although I feel that the Thirteeners take the win (Go Thirteeners!) I must say that Tara D’s eating an entire chocolate cake has made me her fan for life. Now I wish I had taken the dare to eat an entire pepperoni pizza. I can do that, you know!!!

    Like

    • Oh please, you think a manic-depressive carrot, a few talking spice jars, and some questionably posed action figures can beat dead chickens, beloved doorknobs, and chocolate cake? Plus, you Thirteeners don’t have a single viable candidate for November. Take the win? I don’t think so.

      Like

      • Ellen Oh

        I have to admit – beloved doorknobs and dead chickens are damn hard to beat… But our editing process much better! Ah HAAAA!! (since I did all the editing I’ll take the win for that… thank you thank you…)

        Like

    • First official Fan for Life! Yessss! 🙂

      Like

  13. Alexa

    Fantastic! I’m still laughing.

    Like

  14. Well, Jean, you obviously don’t understnad my doorknob attachment….
    BRAVA! Emus! I watched them early this morning before heading out for a while and I have had “That’s What Make sYou Beautiful” Looping through my head (Loved this Natalie–such a great idea!) with the vision of Jeannie interpretive dance. Fantastic, Jeannie. If I ever do an interpretive dance, I will rememebr that it’s all in how you hold the chicken. Words to live by. Yes, agreed that Peter’s son is over-the-top adorable as is Peter’s childhood writing. Lisa! Amazing job at reading in Pig Latin–I wouldn’t have been able to pull that one off. Tara is a convincing 17-your-old–amazing! Love the facial expressions. And our own celebrity Woman-of-the-Week, Jeanne did a great uninterested editor–liked her expresions, too. Laurie–love your energy!–and your review, of course. 🙂 Now…Jeanne…erm…I don’t know what to say about the cake. This was a feat. I was totally cracking up. I can’t believe you ate the whooooole thing! You didn’t have to do more than one take, right? I showed mine to my husband; I think he said something about needing a lawyer???
    Seriously! I do LOVE this group–you are all so, so amazingly awesome. Awesome! I don’t know. That doesn’t even cover it, does it?

    Like

  15. Pingback: You Gotta Have NERVE « Writing for Kids (While Raising Them)

  16. BTW, anyone know why my computer filmed my love letter backwards??? I suppose Peter would say that it was rhetorical. *sniff*

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  17. I never thought watching people rhapsodize about doorknobs or dancing with chickens would make me love them even more, but there it is. You all rock, and huge congratulations to Jeanne–and all of you–on NERVE!

    Like

  18. Oh, my goodness! These were all amazing, but my two favorites were Tara eating the cake (Matilda is my favorite book too) and poor Jeanne’s first pages. (I’ve totally been there. One editor read my submission about a cat and thought it was about a DOG.) Congratulations, Jeanne! I can’t wait to read NERVE!

    Like

  19. What a great set of dares! Loved Tara Lazar’s “eye work” and tribute to the overwhelming power of early crushes–fantastic video! And loved Tara Dairman’s simultaneous reading of Matilda and cake eating–quite an accomplishment!

    Like

  20. I’ve watched Natalie a few times now–I love it. I will forever assocoiate this song with EMus now. And Natalie can really rock a Star Wars helmet. Am I right? I AM!

    Like

  21. Mike Jung

    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA… *wipes eyes* I’ve honestly never been more proud to be a part of this group than I am after watching these video dares.

    Like

  22. Pingback: Friday Music: NERVE

  23. Blown. Away.

    I knew you guys were funny, charming and eloquent, but I had no idea how much stage presence y’all had!

    Adin is totally adorable. L.B. is the fastest pig-Latin speaker I have ever seen. Tara D. takes the cake (Seriously, I find what you did unfreakingbelievable). Laurie’s movie review was spot on.
    I’m glad you included yourself in a dare, Peter, your manifesto is hilarious. Tara L.! You must have an acting background. And the way you ended it was brilliant. Lynda – you’ve got serious acting chops too, and a future in performing odes I’m sure. Jeannie – you soared to glory bigtime (now I must re-watch to find the cat) and Natalie, your sweet, sweet video made me tear up, just like your book did.

    Thank you all soo much. Whenever I’m having a tough writing day or get a rejection or deal with the many knocks we face in this biz, I will go back to these videos. Because today is a day that I’ll cherish forever. xox times infinity.

    Like

  24. I really feel for the chicken. My, my, what a tragedy!!!

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  25. Woohoo, what a great blog! And what an inspiring book, Jeanne! Tara, you obviously love chocolate cake, I know I do:) After watching the videos, I think these might easily be turned into picture books.

    Like

  26. swpulley

    Great fun! Authors making delightful fools of themselves, each in their own, inimitable way. Something we should all be doing. Although I’ll probably be pilloried for casting my vote for someone I know (rank favoritism, you’ll protest), I think Jeannie Mobley has to be the daree of the day, and she does a superb, hilarious job of it. Almost made me want to take up interpretive dancing over my current rage, Gangnam Style. Bravo, Jeannie! You are truly a Renaissance Woman: anthropologist, college professor, writer, mother, engineer of TARDIS booths, chicken coddler, terpsichorean… What on earth can’t you do!?

    Like

  27. You guys are awesome! Those were all great. Tara, watching you eat the cake made me a little ill. But that’s how I feel about that part in the movie as well. Ugh.

    So much fun. 🙂 You guys really do have some NERVE. 🙂

    Like

  28. I may be biased in favor of my fellow Thirteeners, but that cake dare was EPIC.

    Like

  29. That was a lot of fun. Sad but I like watching other people embarrass themselves 😉 I did notice the cat Jeannie. In fact I kept trying to see if the cat would move and if it was real. I kept thinking move Jeannie, I want to see the cat, lol! You all did a great job. I can’t pick a favorite, it was all just too much fun.

    Like

  30. Best post EVER! What a great idea to celebrate a release, and how very talented and entertaining you all are! I will never think about doorknobs or chickens the same way :), and Tara, that was some love letter! 🙂

    Like

  31. Lori Alexander

    Wow!! You guys are ALL awesome. I was a bit worried about Tara D. from minutes 5-6…thought you had hit the wall on that chocolate cake. Well done!

    Like

  32. Haha, that teen letter was epic. I loved all your dares. May I say that, for dare-virgins, you all did a fantastic job.

    I still think we win though. I mean…He-man, Fifty Shades of Twilight, Pig Latin AND Carl the Carrot? It really isn’t fair. 😉

    Like

  33. Great idea for a book launch, as creative as your corral of artists. The best? Tara’s cake eating, YIKES! She should have read James & The Giant Peach, it would have been less calories!

    Like

  34. This was so much fun! Congrats to Jeanne!

    Like

  35. dgmolly

    I think my favorite dare is Write a love poem to an inanimate object and deliver it in dramatic fashion. Hilarious!

    Like

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  37. Bravo all over the place. 🙂

    Like

  38. What an amazing group you guys are. I loved them all, but the ones that will stick with me most are the writing conference re-enactment and the eating of the cake. I kept thinking, “There’s no way she’s going to eat that whole thing.” And then she did. Wow.

    Like

  39. I am really jealous of you guys who have your writing from when you were younger. I have nothing! Barely any photographs, and certainly nothing I ever wrote. I even put together a picture book with my best friend Francine–I wrote, she drew the pictures. It’s something I would love to have but it’s forever lost. Sad, sad, sad.

    Like

  40. Jan O'Neil

    Brilliant. You all are brilliant. Kudos for putting yourselves out there in support of Jeanne, and thanks for the smiles, giggles, and bursts of laughter.

    Like

  41. Bravo! They all took a lot of NERVE. How can one choose? Though LB’s pig latin was phenomenal. Tara’s junior was sooo believable. And how will I ever forget Natalia flipping her hair?

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  42. OMG! These are so awesome! LOL! I think the interpretive dance is my favorite. I’m also in love with the doorknob poem. Hahaha! These definitely took a lot of NERVE.

    Like

  43. Oh my goodness, this was the most fun Saturday morning activity I’ve had in a long time. You all ROCK! (Lulu votes for Tara Lazar as the best; she barked at the screen when I watched that one and whined back at the puppy-and-child noises in the background.)

    The thought of chocolate cake now makes me sick. Thanks, Tara Dairman! That’s a real service you provide to those trying to lose weight.

    But really, the humiliation is so wide and the talent so deep, how does anybody choose a favorite?

    Like

  44. Hilarity, boldness, dancing, singing, unrequited love and cake …what more could be asked? Except that I am feeling a little queasy… You all are awesome! Love this! How could someone Not read NERVE after all this?!!

    Like

  45. Wow, this was epic. :::applauding:::: I laughed, I cried (from laughing). All of you were fantastic. And it’s so comforting to know these dares will live forever in Internetsland.
    It’s hard to choose a favorite. There are so many choice moments of humiliation and extreme satire. I love Jeannie dancing, and Lynda emoting and Tara D downing that HUGE cake while reading — and the Pig Latin and the early works re-read, and the music. . . All wonderful. My favorite is poor Jeanne’s reenactment of her first SCBWI conference First Pages session, because I had a similar experience. Well done, all around. Thank you for this creative and nervy book birthday celebration! Still giggling…

    Like

  46. This is hilarious! I definitely think performing an interpretive dance to a passage from one’s own book takes the most nerve! Except maybe eating an entire cake on video…

    Like

  47. This truly was epic. Kudos to one and all! Perhaps my greatest empathic pain came from the editor reactions in Jeanne Ryan’s SCBWI reenactment. Yes, it was even greater than that which came at the end of Tara’s video as she demonstrated her astonishing skills at reading aloud with a mouth full of cake. But I do think that Jeannie Mobley’s chicken dance took the most nerve.

    Like

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