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Day: April 2, 2018

Jealous Haters Book Club: Handbook For Mortals Chapter 15 (part 2) The Tower or “This is the part where adapting the screenplay into a book got hard”

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Every time I think, “You know, I’m going to run out of Handbook For Mortals shenanigans before we get to the end of the recaps,” I am proved wrong. So, this installment brings us…


Awesome tweeter Aron alerted me to this press release, tweeted by an account called ADA IT Solutions. Since Handbook For Mortals has nothing at all to do with either the Americans with Disabilities Act or improved access to technology as outlined in the Americans with Disabilities Act, it’s pretty clear that Cision PR Newswire’s strategy seems to be “throw something at the wall and see if it sticks.” Which falls right in line with Handbook and Lani Sarem, who both receive a generous re-branding as we steam toward the release of the movie.


Author Lani Sarem, whose initial offering Handbook for Mortalsdebuted at No. 34 on the USA Today Bestseller list, continues promotion on the national Comic Con circuit alongside American PieRookie of the Year star Thomas Ian Nicholas. The film is scheduled to shoot later this year, based on the book.  In a year of empowering females within the industry, it’s important to note that the film is not only very female-driven, but also includes a strong female protagonist, female director, female line producer and Sarem herself as the author.

No longer billed as a New York Times bestseller, this bulletin is content to celebrate the (also scammed) success of the book as a USA Today bestseller. I mean, who needs a big flashy label when you’re suddenly, out of absofuckinglutely nowhere, a juggernaut of feminist power? I mean, a female director (probably Lani Sarem), a female line producer (also probably Lani Sarem), and a strong female protagonist who never has to work to get anything she wants because her daddy gives it to her? Hold onto your pussy hats, ladies, we’re going to the theater!

Handbook for Mortals is about a young woman with supernatural powers who joins a Las Vegas magic show only to find that love is more dangerous than magick.

It certainly is for the girl at Hot Dog On A Stick who’s covered in broken glass and lemonade.

Sarem and Nicholas took an interesting approach to find an early audience for the franchise. Nicholas was booked as a celebrity guest at many conventions including Motor City, Alamo City and all the Wizard World Comic Cons starting early in 2017. They promoted the story and pre-sold Handbook for Mortals all across the country before the book even had a cover. In fact, it was at Wizard World Comic Con Philadelphia where they met comic book artist Ryan M. Kincaid, who ultimately drew the cover art.

If I’m ever accused of a crime, I’m going to use that line. I didn’t burn that house down. I “took an interesting approach” to building redesign. I didn’t murder that guy. I “took an interesting approach” to interpersonal conflict resolution. I didn’t steal that loaf of bread. I “took an interesting approach” to capitalism.

You know. Just the same exact way Ryan M. Kincaid “took an interesting approach” to drawing the cover art by literally tracing another author’s work.

On creating a story centered around a female lead, Sarem notes, “That was always the idea. Even at a young age I noticed what was going on.”

According to the feature on her on Vulture, the thing she noticed that was going on was that she couldn’t get parts as an actress, so she wrote this one specifically for herself. This isn’t empowering to women. It’s empowering to one woman.

About the comic conventions where she allegedly sold one book every forty-six seconds, per the math done by commenter Maths GCSE Graduate on the last recap, Sarem says:

“It’s a great place to meet fans looking for the next source of entertainment,” Sarem explains. “They’re excited to find something new and there’s nothing like watching them walk away clutching the book like it’s the most valuable thing they own.”

Nobody has ever felt that way about this book. And most people don’t go to conventions looking for “the next source of entertainment.” They go to see the people who are already making the entertainment they like. They want to meet the artists and illustrators and celebrities they already know.

You might be thinking to yourself, “How did Lani Sarem get this far into the press release without namedropping?” Well, don’t worry. Thomas Ian Nicholas is there to do it for her:

Nicholas also says, “It’s fun getting this project off the ground by connecting directly with people in the right environment. Plus, spending the weekend with other guests like Gregg SulkinJason MomoaHolly Marie CombsBonnie WrightSebastian StanIan Somerhalder– it’s starting to feel like one big supportive family.”

Okay, but they’re no Carrot Tops, are they?

The press release goes on in an attempt to tie Sarem and Handbook to Disney via Thomas Ian Nicholas and John Heder’s Disney trivia panel that Sarem moderates and that a Disney artist showed up to hand out prizes for. One thing you can say for Lani (who absolutely wrote this press release herself, as no one who does this as their job would write a press release that included so much information completely unrelated to the main point), she sure knows how to starfuck in public.

Lest you think the entire thing is about the famous people Sarem and Nicholas sometimes stand next to, oh no, dear reader. We haven’t forgotten that this is a work of fearful and staggering feminism:

 For several years, she was one of the youngest female band managers with two platinum selling, Grammy award-winning acts nestled in her roster of bands. Music is another area of the entertainment business that is typically a boys club. Sarem is no stranger to breaking down those walls and says, “It’s always an interesting challenge to find your place as a woman in a male-centric business. I hope I’m one of the many people that bring about positive change to the film industry. I want to inspire young girls to know they can dream big and achieve whatever their heart desires.”

Yes, young girls, you can dream big and achieve…wait, what the fuck has Lani Sarem ever achieved, aside from being fired from the bands she managed because they apparently grew tired of her schemes and going on to expose herself as a clumsy fraud in the literary world? Watch out, film industry. Lani is on her way to fix you the way she fixed publishing. Sit down, women in Holywood who have been fighting for equality! Lani Sarem has it handled.

Obviously, now that Handbook For Mortals is burning its bra, everyone is going to stop mocking it, right?

Gretchen Weiners from Mean Girls saying, "That's just like, the rules of feminism."

Nope! Sorry, Lani Sarem, but your scam has never been about “empowering women.” It’s been 100% about you getting famous by any means necessary. It’s been about empowering you. Now you’ve been slightly sort-of kind of notable in a fully non-important way for almost a year. That’s all people are willing to give you in all of this, which is honestly more than you deserve.

Anyway onto the blistering female empowerment of Handbook For Mortals