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Literary Lessons From Ed Burns, Katie Lee, Dr. Ruth, Simon Doonan, Mark Murphy, And More

Nicole Barylski

"Independent Ed: Inside a Career of Big Dreams, Little Movies, and the Twelve Best Days of My Life" author Ed Burns. (Photo: Rossa Cole /SocietyAllure.com)

Nearly 2,500 attendees came out to support East Hampton Library's annual Authors Night on Saturday, August 8th; where over 3,000 books were sold, raising more than $325,000 for the Library. Participating authors included notable names like Ed Burns, Katie Lee, Jonathan Adler, Arlene Alda, Simon Doonan, Florence Fabricant, Jules Feiffer, Fern Mallis, Wednesday Martin, Marc Murphy, Dr. Ruth Westheimer, Nelson DeMille, and many more.

Hamptons.com had the chance to speak with several of the authors, and here's what we learned:

Dr Ruth Westenheimer poses with "The Doctor Is In: Dr. Ruth on Love, Life, and Joie de Vivre." (Photo: Rossa Cole /SocietyAllure.com)

Ed Burns takes a look at 20 years of making independent films in "Independent Ed: Inside a Career of Big Dreams, Little Movies, and the Twelve Best Days of My Life." "Hopefully it's an inspiring tale for anyone who wants to do anything creative," he told us. "It goes through the highs and lows, and there were great highs and there were terrible lows." Burns, whose latest project, "Public Morals," is set to premiere on TNT on Tuesday, August 25th, was inspired by the 20th anniversary of his first film, "The Brothers McMullen." "I thought it would be a good time to look back on those 20 years," shared Burns. He said the book is partly a how to guide, but also "a cautionary tale for anyone who wants to make an independent film."

We found out that Dr. Ruth Westheimer has one of the best outlooks on life: make the most out of every single day. The 87-year-old covers her philosophy of life in "The Doctor Is In: Dr. Ruth on Love, Life, and Joie de Vivre." She hopes that the book helps readers become more realistic about life, and learn not to be complainers. Dr. Ruth had one simple piece of advice for those looking for a significant other. "If they're not in a relationship, go out, find a relationship, and then call me."

Chef and "Season with Authority: Confident Home Cooking" author Marc Murphy. (Photo: Rossa Cole /SocietyAllure.com)

Chef Marc Murphy just wants "people to enjoy good food and start cooking." His new book, "Season with Authority: Confident Home Cooking," is a compilation of all the recipes he's loved throughout his life. "People are always telling me they're scared of cooking, they don't know," said Murphy. "To me, I wanted to make recipes that are simple, that you really try, that you can play around with." When creating a meal, he starts with what's fresh and looks good at the supermarket. "The ingredients speak to you and you play with them," shared the chef. "That's sort of how it works for me." He said you can't go wrong with a big bowl of pasta. "One of the first things I ever cooked was Spaghetti Carbonara, which I grew up in Italy, so the Roman Spaghetti Carbonara is one of my favorites," noted Murpy. As for what he hopes people take away from the cookbook, "I wanted this to be a book that people could buy and get dirty in the kitchen and use," explained Murphy.

Thinking about hosting a dinner party soon? You'll love what we learned from "Wine with Food" author Florence Fabricant. "You can really match lots of different wines with lots of different foods and be happy," said Fabricant. For people who are afraid of making the wrong pairing, said noted, "it's hard to make a mistake." So don't worry too much about matching the right wine and dish, because "if the wine is good and the food is good, you'll enjoy it."

"The Asylum: A Collage of Couture Reminiscences...and Hysteria" author Simon Doonan. (Photo: April Barylski)

Simon Doonan told us "The Asylum: A Collage of Couture Reminiscences...and Hysteria" is his love letter to the fashion industry. "I'm fortunate to have been in the fashion world for many decades, and basically I sat down and tried to think of the most fun things that have happened to me," explained Doonan. The book covers moments like the Michael Kors' show in the 80s when the ceiling fell in, and other moments that he thought would appeal to both those in the fashion world and non-fashionistas. Speaking of the fashion world, we had to find out who his style icons included. Doonan's all time top picks included Liberace, Elvis Presley, Iris Apfel, Madonna (who he says adapts with the times), Daphne Guinness, and Anna Wintour. As for stylish divas of the moment, one of his favorites is Miley Cyrus, because she has her own style. "She's great," Doonan said. "She's very stylish, she's inventive and she's unconventional, which I think is a very important part of fashion."

Jonathan Adler is hoping to share his "missionary zeal to help spread a design philosophy of style, craft and joy" with "100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life." The designer absolutely loves the "everything goes eclecticism" trend "that has taken over our world in the best way possible." He said the unique combination makes it a fun time to be a designer. "Mixing high and low, ugly and pretty, and everything in between is like the best thing ever, very free," shared Adler. Looking for a quick and easy way to instantly update a room? He suggests a nifty throw pillow, which conveniently enough are available at www.jonathanadler.com.

"Endless Summer" author Katie Lee. (Photo: Rossa Cole /SocietyAllure.com)


We were thrilled to learn that Katie Lee's "Endless Summer" was inspired by the Hamptons. "This is where I spend most of my time, and I think we have some of the best farms in the world right here," shared Lee. "So for anyone who likes to cook, this is a very exciting place to be." Some of her favorite East End spots to shop include The Green Thumb, who has "wonderful produce," North Sea Farms for chicken, Mecox Bay Dairy for cheese, and Amagansett Sea Salt. "This is one of the few places you actually can eat farm-to-table," she noted.

For more information about East Hampton Library, visit www.easthamptonlibrary.org.


Nicole is the Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com where she focuses on lifestyle, nightlife, and mixology. She grew up in the Hamptons and currently resides in Water Mill. www.hamptons.com NicoleBarylski NicoleBarylski


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