Usually summertime calls for a welcomed break from busy work schedules, but not for Melissa Rivers, who is busier than ever! During the Fashion Police hiatus, Melissa has been spending her summer with her son, Cooper, traveling across the country for his lacrosse games. So far they have gone to four tournaments in Baltimore, Denver, Salt Lake and Delaware, not to mention prospective college campus visits in between. Being so busy, it’s a wonder she also has time for her own summer reading, writing and developing various new projects.
We caught up with this superwoman to learn more about her new book, Joan Rivers Confidential: The Unseen Scrapbooks, Joke Cards, Personal Files, and Photos of a Very Funny Woman Who Kept Everything; and her summer reading list!
Personal Space: What are your favorite summer activities?
Melissa Rivers: I love spending time with my son. I love being outside in the good weather; we go to Wyoming every summer. My son plays club lacrosse, so most of this summer we've been traveling around for tournaments.
PS: What books are you currently enjoying?
MR: Al Franken's Giant of the Senate
David Mccullough’s The American Spirit: Who We Are and What We Stand For
David Grann’s Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI
PS: Any TV shows you are loving right now- Do you watch Game of Thrones?
MR: Summer is always tough with shows. I wish I was! I tried to get into it, and I think it was just the wrong circumstances. I was on a plane and couldn't hear, but I am going to loop back around to it. I’m really enjoying the Jim Jefferies Show. It’s hilarious.
PS: Tell us about your new book coming out.
MR: My parents kept tremendous archives and files. My friend, Scott Currie, who is like my brother, realized that there was an amazing book here. We went through all of the archives, basically from the 50’s forward and made it a scrapbook of her entire career, with things that have never been seen before. It’s fascinating because it's very much a social commentary. You know about your parents' stuff, but how often do you go back? Pictures from the 60’s or transcripts from The Tonight Show in the 80’s. Scott really curated the photos and all that kind of stuff, the articles. My part was to assemble it. So you can look at it as a history of what was topical through all of those decades, told through her career and her humor.
PS: Any details or sneak previews you can share with us?
MR: I found the mid to late 60’s-70’s fascinating. She was always finding her voice and pushing the envelope, starting to talk about things that were totally taboo. When my mother was pregnant with me, for example, she was on The Ed Sullivan Show. You were not allowed to use the word "pregnant." You had to say, “I’ll be hearing the pitter patter of little feet soon” - as she's standing there 7 months pregnant, hard to miss. Then you jump forward to The Johnny Carson Show in the 70’s, and they are talking about much more aggressive things on being a parent or motherhood, that people didn't talk about. It’s really fascinating to look at that. It’s literally a pop culture history from the 50’s through the mid 2000’s.
PS: What fashion trends right now do you think Joan would like?
MR: She would love all the embellish. All that romantic embellishment.
PS: Any other projects or plans in the pipeline you are excited about?
MR: I’m very excited about the book. We have Fashion Police through the end of the year. I have four different things in various stages of development. It’s very exciting. The other project I have coming up is hopefully getting my son into college; that’s a two-year plan!
Melissa’s new book comes out on October 24, 2017. You can pre-order it here.
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