Monday, December 31, 2012


Saying good-by to 2012 with this awesome review for The Worldwide Dessert Contest: Enhanced Multimedia Edition by Dan Elish from The New England Theatre Geek:

Alina Adams Media presents Dan Elish’s: The Worldwide Dessert Contest: Enhanced Multimedia Edition,  an ebook with musical numbers embedded into the journey to play while you read. This multimedia fantasy novel about master dessert-concocter John Applefeller, his assistant Stanley and their friends. They learn together, with a bit of song, that with some ingenuity you can do anything you set out to do with a bit of mentoring and help from your creative friends.

The music is incredibly earnest. The band of performers sing well, with clear and trained voices. The score is pleasing to the ear and can stand alone as a soundtrack to enjoy on its own. Depending on the preference of the listener, the low production values may not cause such a distraction as to deter from one’s listening enjoyment. The styles are reminiscent of the Andrews Sisters, traditional musical theater. Fans of the music from Carol King’s Really Rosie may fall in love with this singing ebook.

Read the entire review at:

And make a New Year's resolution to have a lot more dessert in 2013!

Friday, December 28, 2012


As we remember Edge of Night, which went off the air 28 years ago (the same number of years it was actually on the air), a fun blast from the past by actress Mariann Aalda.

Originally published 9/22/10:


Calling all Edge of Night fans!

Want to know what your favorite Monticello residents have been up to since the show went off the air in 1984?

Actress Mariann Aalda, who played DiDi starting in 1981 through to the end, offers her take in a new weekly blog, Eye on Monticello (!

Please check it out and make sure to leave a comment welcoming Mariann to the Soap Opera 451 family! (Plus, see the familiar face who already stopped by to say hello!)

Thursday, December 27, 2012


A lot of fun was had on Twitter last night when, in response to rumors that General Hospital's Steve Burton would be joining the cast of The Young & the Restless (where former GH Executive Producer Jill Farren Phelps is now running things), Y&R star Eric Braeden (Victor) tweeted that he honestly had no idea who Steven Burton was.

Let's set aside that both GH and Y&R are taped in L.A.  Let's set aside that they've been attending the same Daytime Emmys (and pre-Emmy functions) for easily the past 20 years together.

Let's focus on the fact that both Eric Braeden and Steven Burton won their Daytime Emmy Awards in 1998, Burton for Outstanding Supporting Actor and Braeden for Outstanding Lead Actor.

Now, I was working those Emmys, and I do remember that Braeden wasn't there to pick up his statue in person.  But, can we assume that he at least watched the ceremony from wherever he was?

And if he was too busy too watch, surely he must have taped it, no?

So I guess one thing we can surmise is that Eric Braeden must have fast-forwarded through the entire show only to see his part.  (As he once said himself on yet another telecast during a tribute to Bill Bell, "God Bless Eric Braeden.")

Not a problem.

Here's what - and who - he missed.


“You’re my only option," Marley reminded Grant.  "But, I’m not yours.”

“I don’t understand.”

“Sarah wants you.  My God, does she want you.  The way she was looking at you when she was here.  That girl is madly, ridiculously, breathlessly in love with you.”

Grant shook his head dismissively, not wanting to so much as consider the implications.  “She’s young.  She doesn’t even know what the word means.  Tomorrow, she’ll feel that way about someone else.”

“I don’t feel that way about you, Grant.  I love you, I do.  But, not like that.”

“It doesn’t matter,” Grant said.

“What do you mean it doesn’t matter?  How could it not matter?”


Marley and Grant finally confront the truth about their marriage, Cass and Frankie's return turns Jamie, Felicia and Lucas' - not to mention Charlie's - world upside down, Steven uses Sarah for his own agenda, Lila goes head to head with Donna over Jasmine, Allie shares her suspicions with Zeno, and Russ gets a holiday surprise from Iris... who then receives a surprise of her own.

Your Christmas Day may be over, but Bay City is still in the thick of things at:

Monday, December 24, 2012


“You cheated on Aunt Marley.  How could you do that?”

“That’s adult business, Michele,” Marley interjected.  “Not yours.”

“Sarah was our friend,” Bridget said quietly.  “I mean, I thought she was our friend.  I thought she was your friend, too, Aunt Marley.”

“So did I,” Marley confessed.

“And you were supposed to love Aunt Marley.  You said you loved her,” Michele reminded.  “You said you loved all of us.”

“I do,” Grant stuck to the facts.

“We’re not little kids, you know,” Michele said.  “Just because you treat us that way, doesn’t mean we don’t understand stuff.  We’re almost thirteen.  We know where babies come from.”

“How could you do that with Sarah?” Bridget demanded.

“I never meant to hurt anyone.”  Again, the god’s truth.  “I made an error in judgment that, more than anything, I wish I could take back and undo.  I’ve explained as much to your Aunt Marley, and she, in her infinite generosity, has agreed to try and forgive me.”

“Well, sure, yeah, that’s what she does, isn’t it?” Michele snapped.  “Forgive people who hurt her?  Like our dad?”


Christmas with the Harrisons, Corys and Matthews isn't exactly Peace on Earth/Goodwill To Men.  Fa la la la la la...

Spend the holidays in Bay City at:

Friday, December 21, 2012


If the world does end today (the Mayans didn't give a time, did they?) via floods and earthquakes and storms, what better way to go out than while watching soaps' takes on natural disasters.

Santa Barbara - Earthquake!

General Hospital - Let's Freeze Port Charles!

All My Children - Tornado!

Search for Tomorrow - Flood!

As the World Turns - Ice Storm!

Sunset Beach - Tsunami!

Guiding Light - Earthquake in San Cristobel!

One Life to Live - Fire!

Another World - Cave In!

Thursday, December 20, 2012


Connie stealing and "sexing up" Molly's romance novel on yesterday episode of General Hospital prompted a discussion on Twitter as to whose version you'd rather read.

I chimed in that I could think of nothing more painful than reading love scenes written by an inexperienced teen-ager (at least Connie has several lifetimes to draw from), while others countered that it depended on the teen-ager.

Speaking from experience, I published my first romance novel, The Fictitious Marquis, with AVON when I was 24 years old.  It was a Regency romance, so the sensuality level was low.  At 27, I published my first contemporary, Annie's Wild Ride, which featured this notorious scene on a roller-coaster (I still get fan mail about it).  At 29, I wrote When a Man Loves a Woman... about characters in their early 40s.  Re-reading it now that I'm finally the same age as my characters in preparation for an ebook re-release, I find it a bit embarrassing.  The characters don't sound like 40 year olds.  They sound like 20 year olds trying to pretend they're 40 year olds.  (Read more about my Age of Love dilemma, here.)

And I'm not even talking about the sex scenes.  When it comes to those, I can only imagine how mortified I would have been if I'd somehow managed to trick an editor into publishing any of those before I knew what the heck I was talking about.  (Fortunately, all of my teen-age attempts have been lost to history, as my brother was charged with mailing a box of the notebooks I'd kept in high school from San Francisco to New York and did so in a flimsy paper envelope that fell apart somewhere over the Midwest.)  I can't imagine Molly's opus could be any better.

I can, however, relate to Molly's dilemma of cringing at her mother reading the love scenes she'd written (or had re-written).  I once thought there was nothing worse than the mere thought of your parents reading your sex scenes.  But, then, I had children.

Turns out that's even worse.  I wrote about it on Jewrotica.  Along with my thoughts about why reading romance is important.  Especially for impressionable teen-age girls:

There are multiple reasons why romance novels can be considered “good” literature, but I am primarily interested in this one: When I write my romance novels (sex scenes and all), there is a part of me that hopes they’ll get picked up and read by some girl (or woman) who has been deprived of this information at home. This part of me hopes that my books can be a learning tool for the countless women in this country who have been denied a positive and healthy education regarding their own bodies, choices, and desires.

Though “sex education” is not my only motivation for writing romance novels, I can’t deny that there is both a thrill and a responsibility in writing books that may actually help someone discover or unleash a previously hidden part of themselves. Even if the woman in question decides she wants no part of a sexually adventurous lifestyle, I still think the information needs to be readily available. Sex-positive sex education–no matter its format–can save lives and dispel the shame that cripples us.

Jews, we are told repeatedly, are The People of the Book.  It is our job to be a Light Upon the Nations.  We’re supposed to lead by example, and educate, and illuminate.  We are supposed to Heal the World in whichever way we see fit.

This is mine.

But, notice I said they should read them.  Not write them.


“Go away, Iris," Grant advised.  "I’ve explained myself to the only people who matter: my wife and my son.  I don’t owe you anything.”

“Do you honestly think you can seduce my granddaughter – “

“Trust me, Grandma, if there was any seduction going on, your precious chip off the old block was the one initiating it, not me.”

“Because you are simply that irresistible?”

“So I’ve been told.”

“You’re a politician, Grant, surely you know puffery when you hear it.  It is, after all, your stock in trade.”

“And you’re a bitch, Iris, surely you know when to crawl away and die alone like a proper junkyard dog.”

Her eyes widened.  Not because Iris was shocked at the insult – she’d heard much, much worse; not to mention dished out a great deal more clever – but because of the coarseness with which Grant uttered it.  Truly, she’d never seen him so upset.  He wasn’t even making a token attempt to appear in control or above it all.  And that intrigued her to no end.


Grant receives Hell about his relationship with Sarah from Kirkland, Iris... and a surprise visitor.  Cass and Frankie finally understand the consequences of their rash actions, Felicia tells Jamie the last thing he expected to hear, and Morgan has a spot of advice for Amanda.

Tis the night before Christmas in Bay City:

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Lynn Liccardo, author of the book, As the World Stopped Turning, writes a profile on the woman who birthed the soap opera genre, Irna Phillips, for Harvard Magazine:

If ever a writer embodied Thornton Wilder’s observation that “art is not only the desire to tell one’s secret; it is the desire to tell it and hide it at the same time,” it was Irna Phillips.

In 1930, Phillips—a 29-year-old, unemployed Chicago schoolteacher and part-time radio actress—was asked to write and act in radio’s first serial drama, Painted Dreams. She jumped at the chance. In the next 43 years, she would create or co-create 18 radio and television serials; four were still on the air when she died, including Guiding Light and As the World Turns, the two longest-running daytime dramas on television....

Her need for Oakdale began in the mid 1920s when Phillips, who never had a date in high school or college, met an English doctor, “not handsome,” but “with charm and intelligence,” and decided he was the man she would marry. Things didn’t work out as she hoped. She became pregnant but the doctor abandoned her, and she then lost not only the baby but any chance for another. The resulting sterility led her to decide “to never become involved with an unmarried man,” thus sparing herself “the pain and embarrassment of telling a man I couldn’t have children.” That vow played out through characters like ATWT’s jilted Edith Hughes, who later fell in love with her brother’s unhappily married law partner. Phillips presented the story through characters neither all black nor all white, forcing viewers, writes La Guardia, “to grieve over the heartbreak of the human condition rather than hang on to a fixed value judgment.”

In 1964, Phillips created Another World, and the character through whom she would both tell and hide her own story: Pat Matthews, who would murder the man who impregnated her and then coerced her into an illegal, botched abortion that left her sterile. In her memoir, Phillips wrote that her own pregnancy ended with a stillbirth, followed by an infection. What really happened will likely remain a mystery, but her efforts to exorcise her demons through Pat’s story took its toll on Pat’s portrayer; after 18 exhausting months, the actress asked to be released from her contract.

Read the entire piece at:

For more on Irna's life and how it pertained to the characters she created, especially on ATWT, click here.

And to watch Irna's induction into the Soap Opera Hall of Fame, go here.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012


A little over a year ago, Prospect Park officially gave up on trying to bring All My Children and One Life to Live to the internet after their cancellation by ABC.  The main sticking point at the time was contracts with the unions representing the actors, writers and directors.

Twelve months later, however, is reporting:

Prospect Park has revived its plan to continue cancelled ABC daytime dramas All My Children and One Life To Live online. I hear the company behind USA hit Royal Pains has inked deals with SAG-AFTRA and DGA for the soaps’ production, eyed to begin in the first quarter of 2013. UPDATE: Reps for DGA and SAG-AFTRA have confirmed to Deadline that the unions have reached agreements with Prospect Park.

However, twelve months later, many of OLTL's and AMC's actors have moved on to other roles.  Despite the new union contract, how many of them would sign on to reprise their characters?  There is also the issue of money.  Used to network paydays, how many would agree to perform the same amount of work for an inevitable, substantial pay cut?

A year ago, I speculated about the possibility of producing the shows in name only, with different actors, characters and situations.

Read the below and let us know, is that option one you'd consider watching?

Originally published 12/8/11


No sooner do I post yesterday about Prospect Park no longer being an option for All My Children and One Life to Live, then reports:

(O)ne of the options Prospect Park is said to be considering is bringing in an overseas firm to turn the shows into a co-production. That may or may not allow the shows to circumvent the unions, which couldn't come to terms with Prospect Park on compensation for talent on both sides of the camera.

Here's the thing:

Let's say the shows could be filmed overseas, in Eastern Europe or Spain, or even just across the border in Canada (they'd hardly be the first ones to leave the USA in order to cut costs - a couple of years ago an actor friend of mine shot a Baskin-Robbins commercial in South Africa; yes, it was cheaper to put up an entire crew in a foreign country for a few days than it would have been to shoot locally).

You could presumably get non-American/non-Union production staff, non-Union writers (would Agnes Nixon participate?), non-union directors. You could truck out the sets and make them look exactly the same as they did when erected at ABC Studios. Maybe no one would even notice the difference.

But, what about the actors?

Would American actors work on a non-Unionized production?

Some might, some might not. I certainly don't know everyone's personal status or opinion.

But, it's doubtful that enough actors would sign on to such an endeavor to makes the shows feel the same. This could well end up being All My Children and One Life to Live in name only, with a flood of new faces in familiar roles, or simply a flood of new characters (it's hard to determine which options soap fans would hate less.)

In 1988, a TV movie entitled Bonanaza: The Next Generation served as a pilot for what would have become a series sequel to the mega 1959-1973 hit. It featured none of the original characters or actors, though Michael Landon Jr. did play Little Joe's son, and Lorne Greene's daughter was also cast.

Next Generation failed to go to series, though it did spawn two more TV movies. In 2001, viewers got The Ponderosa, a prequel series that lasted one year on PAX, again featuring none of the original cast and changing some cannon history, to boot. The show filmed in Australia to cut costs.

Though it failed for a variety of reasons, a similar project, Star Trek: The Next Generation, was a phenomenal success using basically the same formula: Familiar name, new characters.

Would you watch an All My Children that focused on a now-grown Miranda, Gabrielle, Emma, Jenny, Little A, Spike, Ian and Trevor, or a One Life to Live that showed you what life was really like for young Viki under the thumb of her dictatorial father - not to mention what in the world made Dorian, well... Dorian?

Is All My Children: The Next Generation or Llanview a viable option?

Monday, December 17, 2012


Thank you to Mystery File for reviewing Murder on Ice, the first book in my Figure Skating Mystery series:

What sport is more open to corruption (in terms of the judging) than figure ice skating? In terms of inside information, there is no one more likely to know than Alina Adams, also known in the real world as figure-skating expert Alina Sivorinovsky.

   Here’s a quote from page 3:

   …in only ten days of competition, they’d already seen eleven hysterical meltdowns, eight formal complaint about biased judging, seven countercomplaints about biased refereeing, five screaming matches, four out-and-out fistfights, two reporters getting their credentials pulled, and one arrest (disturbing the peace; Belgium’s ice skater decided to celebrate his bronze medal by doing a naked Yankee polka on the roof).

   And this was all even before the Italian judge turned up dead.

This, though, is probably my favorite line from the entire review:

Adams also has a light touch that you could either find very amusing or wince at very easily.

Yeah.... I've heard that one before.  And not just about my books, either.

I gather I'm an acquired taste.

Read the entire piece at:


The message to Rachel Hutchins from Chase Hamilton consisted of a single word: Ditto.

It was in direct reply to the email she’d sent him weeks earlier, encouraging Chase to turn on KBAY-TV and watch Grant’s live press conference announcing his bid for Mayor and playing the recording of Chase and Lila.

Rachel knew she’d inevitably regret it.  But, best get whatever it was Chase thought he had on her over with.  She trudged over to the TV and turned it on with a preemptive, mournful sigh.  Just in time to be greeted with Mayor Hamilton's smug, preening visage. 

Chase talked a little bit about his distinguished opponent, Mr. Harrison.  And then he introduced his guest for the afternoon… Sarah Matthews-Wheeler.


Bay City gets the scoop on Grant and Sarah, prompting Donna to take matters into her own hands, and Rachel to make a threat.  Meanwhile, Jamie makes a heartfelt confession to the wrong person, Kirkland tries to get an answer from Charlie, and Frankie and Cass' latest plan finally succeeds... A little too well.

Tis the week before Christmas and all through the house - things are a mess:

Thursday, December 13, 2012


You're probably familiar with the big name ex-soap stars appearing in Steven Spielberg's hit feature, Lincoln.

There's Tommy Lee Jones (OLTL) and Hal Holbrook (The Brighter Day), of course, but did you recognize Joseph Cross (ATWT) or John Hutton (AW)?  (Kevin Kline, who worked on Search for Tomorrow, also makes a cameo appearance.)

That's Cross as Casey with his Grandpa Bob (Don Hastings)on As The World Turns above.

And this is Hutton in one his most famous Bay City storylines:



“It’s been a while,” Sharlene told Charlie, hugging her great-niece then looking her up and down for good measure.  “How have you been, sweetheart?”

“Good,” Charlie offered blithely, not sure why exactly Sharlene was there, but striving to be polite, like she’d been taught. 

“Have you heard from your mom and dad recently?”

“They sent a text over Thanksgiving, but you know how Mom and Dad are.  All they need is a bad guy to chase after and they’re off on their latest adventure.  I’m sure there’s a postcard on the way.”

“Sounds terribly glamorous.”

“Yeah.  I’m so lucky to have such awesome parents, not boring stick-in-the-muds who have nothing better to do than sit around at home and poke their noses into their kids’ business every minute of the day,” Charlie parroted in a bored monotone, then, figuring that probably wasn’t the definition of politeness, changed the subject to, “How are you?”

“I’m a little confused, to tell you the truth,” Sharlene said.

“About what?”

“About why you’ve been terrorizing Allie Fowler with forget-me-nots and newspaper clippings about Gregory’s death?”


Sharlene proves she's no fool, Marley confesses she might well be the biggest one of all, Frankie and Cass refuse to be fooled, and are Sarah and Russ fools for trusting Iris?

Make your voice heard at:

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


News of legendary daytime producer Paul Rauch's death yesterday prompted some heartfelt tributes from the actors, writers and producers he mentored and inspired.

For those who never knew the man in the flesh, however, the below serves as a loving tribute to Paul Rauch playing the role he was born to play.  That of... Paul Rauch.

Misguding Light was a 2002 series of webisodes launched to celebrate Guiding Light's 65th Anniversary (and directed by fan favorite Lisa Brown, who once played the flight of fancy inspired Nola).

Michael Logan wrote in TV Guide:

It started on radio in 1937, then moved to television. Now Guiding Light takes on the newest technology with the premiere of Misguiding Light, an online satire of the popular series, beginning Jan. 25. Consisting of five-minute vignettes, Misguiding Light is the brainchild of Procter &#038 Gamble staffers Lisa Baim and Kimberly Hamilton. The program's launch coincides with GL's 65th anniversary. Misguiding Light's main character is aspiring soap opera writer Floyd Boyd, who can't get a break from GL's executive producer Paul Rauch. "His Reva long story gets turned down," says Hamilton. "Before he leaves the studio, he gets into an accident that lands him in the fictional world of Springfield."

Monday, December 10, 2012


I'm not sure if this is the same Ice Moms that Lifetime announced it was developing back in January, but the even more interestingly titled Jersey on Ice premieres on TLC this Wednesday, December 12.

It appears to be a "reality show" (or, what I like to call, improv by amateurs) about mothers who are also figure skating coaches.  In New Jersey.

I will reserve full judgment until I have screened an entire episode.  A minute and a half clip isn't enough to go by.

What I can say right off the bat is that these coaches, moms and kids appear to be competing in the ISIA, the Ice Skating Institute of America, which is different from the United States Figure Skating Association.

Though they also have qualifying level tests and competitions, the ISIA track is not the one that qualifies skaters for the same national championship that qualifies them for the World Championships or the Olympics.  So, by definition, it would seem that the stakes are lower.  Though, of course, low stakes have never stopped any parent in any sport from losing their mind on occasion.

I worked as figure skating researcher, producer and writer for ABC, ESPN, TNT and NBC, covering the USFA side of the sport at Nationals, Worlds, and Olympics.  When I wrote my figure skating mysteries, I set them in the same world, since that's the one I was most familiar with.

In all honesty, I have never so much as attended an ISIA competition.  But, something tells me, it isn't much different.  So, yes, despite my overall dislike of reality shows and the belief that they are killing scripted programming, I confess that I will be watching Jersey on Ice.  And inevitably blogging about it.

In the meantime, if you'd like a head start on examples of Skaters Behaving Badly, please click on the links below.  (Any resemblance of fictional athletes to ones actually living or dead is completely coincidental.  That's my story, and I'm sticking with it.  So the legal department tells me.)

Murder on Ice

Axel of Evil

Death Drop


“Grant,” Marley made up her mind, turning her head, opening the door and calling over her shoulder.  “You have a visitor.”

He came downstairs.  And saw Sarah.  For a long, long, seemingly endless moment, the two merely stared at each other.  It was finally up to Marley to break the silence.

She said, “Apparently, Sarah didn’t believe your telling her to leave you alone.  And she didn’t believe my telling her to leave you alone.  Turns out, she is quite the glutton for punishment.  Sarah wants to hear it again.  Perhaps in stereo.”

Sarah clarified, “What you said, Grant, before, about not wanting me or the baby… That was… Marley didn’t know then.  You wanted to protect her.  I wanted to protect her, too.  But, it’s all different now.  She knows.  She knows it’s your baby.”

“I don’t know that,” Grant finished descending the stairs.  And pointedly passed by Sarah to stand by Marley’s side.  “Didn’t you just claim that Steven was also a candidate?”

“I – I only said that because…. Because Marley was there.  And I didn’t want to… You know Steven and I haven’t… not for a long time.  Not since you and I – “

There was definitely one memory lane Grant didn’t want Sarah going down.  He’d been deliberately vague with timelines when talking to Marley, and he intended to keep it that way.  Better to let her believe his had been a one-time slip up, rather than months of infidelity, both before Grant’s marriage to Marley, and after.  “I don’t know anything, Sarah.  I can’t believe a word that comes out of your mouth now.  If Steven couldn’t possibly be the father, why would he accept responsibility?”


Sarah says her piece to Marley and Grant, and get more than the bargained for in return.  Iris get her way, but not in the way she expects.  Amanda pleads with Alice to change Kevin's mind while Steven makes a confession to Jen.  Frankie and Cass take a desperate gamble, and Allie stands up to GQ.

All at:

Thursday, December 06, 2012


Mark Pinter is on his way to Genoa City, following recent stints on General Hospital, All My Children and, of course, his eight year run as Grant Harrison on Another World.

But, are you familiar with two of his earlier soap roles....

Originally published on 10/28/10

Mark Pinter may be best known for his role as Grant Harrison on Another World (and more recently as Agent Rayner on General Hospital), but, before he came to Bay City, he appeared in two other P&G shows, Guiding Light and As The World Turns. (He was also on Love of Life, Loving and All My Children.)

On GL, Pinter had the misfortune of arriving shortly before a crippling writer's strike, so his Mark Evans went from a dashing foreign affairs expert who dated Vanessa before growing tired of her manipulative ways, to the cad who married Jennifer while seducing her daughter, Amanda, to abusive husband, to Amanda's potential killer, to a completely different guy named Samuel Pasquin who'd pushed a former love of Quint's, Mona, off a cliff years earlier. (She wasn't really dead, of course. She was living in a secret room in Quint's house. Pretending to be mute.)

Mark/Samuel eventually showed some remorse (i.e. the original writing team came back to work), genuinely fell in love with Amanda, but, alas, as these things are wont to happen, ended up taking a poetically apt dive off a cliff himself, along with Mona. This time, the fall stuck.

Jennifer ultimately gave birth to Mark's child, Matthew, but was so traumatized by the many personalities her husband had gone through, that she abandoned the boy into Amanda's care. Amanda grew deeply attached to her half-brother/dead lover's son and wanted to adopt him. When Jennifer returned to reclaim Matthew and move out of town, Amanda followed. (However, the enchantment obviously wore off quickly, because the next time she returned to Springfield, Amanda uttered nary a word about the chubby-cheeked little guy.)

After GL, Pinter moved to ATWT, where he got to play one consistent character for his entire 1984-87 run. Albeit a pretty consistently boring one. Lisa's stepson, Brian, gave up the political career his father had planned for him (don't worry, he'd still get to have it on AW, pushy father and all; guess something about the man screams whipped Daddy's boy) to chase Russian spies with his girlfriend (actress Tracy Kolis might be best known as the Seinfeld girlfriend with the Southern accent who couldn't stop talking).

Once that was thankfully over, Brian moved on to the newly widowed Barbara.

Paul hated him. A lot. On one occasion, Paul proceeded to taunt and punch his mother's boyfriend, making it look like Brian was about to hit him just as Barbara came in (apple doesn't fall far off that Stenbeck tree, does it?). Brian and Barbara broke up. Over the manipulations of a ten year old.

Barbara attempted to win Brian back, but caught him in bed with Shannon. That was the turning point for Good Barbara turning into Hell on Wheels Babs.

Earlier this year, actress Colleen Zenk told about that: The hard part for me as an actor was that it happened overnight. I mean literally overnight. Barbara and Brian (Mark Pinter) were supposed to get married. Paul (Christopher Daniel Barnes) really objected to it. She listened to Paul and told Brian she couldn’t marry him. The next thing she knew Brian was shacking up with Shannon O’Hara (Margaret Reed). Barbara went over to see Brian to tell him she changed her mind. He opens the door, and there’s Shannon in Brian’s robe. So she went home, slept on it, Lisa (Eileen Fulton) showed up the next day, and Barbara opened the door and was a new woman. Literally. She said, “Hello Lisa,” and it was a whole new attitude. It was really difficult for me as an actor.

Brian's relationship with Shannon brought him into her ex, Duncan's, orbit, and that of Duncan's "sister," Beatrice. Though engaged to Shannon, Brian tried to help out the deeply disturbed Beatrice by pretending to be her dead fiancee (a sane relationship, this was not). Shannon saw that Brian was falling for Beatrice, called off her engagement and, with the reveal that Beatrice was actually Duncan's daughter, Brian went from almost being Shannon's husband to her stepson-in-law. (Like I said, not a sane relationship.) Brian and Beatrice moved to Scotland, had a daughter (breaking an old family curse along the way) and were never heard from again.


Alina Adams is the author of Oakdale Confidential, Jonathan's Story and The Man From Oakdale.

Read the Another World Today interviews with Mark here, here, here, here and here.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012


In Korea to promote the upcoming feature film release of Les Miserables, actor Hugh Jackman was asked his thoughts about figure skater Yu-Na Kim choosing to skate to a medley of Les Miz songs this season.

His answer can only be described as... adorable.

See if you agree:

When I worked as a figure skating researcher for ABC, NBC, TNT and ESPN, those of us on the production staff would start off each season by taking bets on which piece of music we'd be hearing the most at competitions that year.  While the score of Les Miz never quite came out on top, Sing, Sing, Sing, Malaguena, Carmen, Swan Lake, Two Guitars and West Side Story were perennial favorites.

In Book #3 of my Figure Skating Mystery series, Axel of Evil, my heroine Bex Levy, in Moscow for a US vs. Russia Made-for-TV special, calls the music choices as she sees them....

The pride of Ohio bravely skated out to the center of the ice, raising her arms in what might have been surrender, crossing them at the wrists in what might have been martyrdom, then splaying her fingers and pressing her palms forward which, in conjunction with her gleaming white dress and matching ballerina-bun scrunchie, meant only one thing to Bex. Swan Lake. Let the downy death throes begin.

And, as soon as they did, Francis and Diana whipped through Brittany's bio: Born in Cleveland, blah, blah... Russian grandfather, blah, blah, blah ... first American ever to represent Russia... great presentation... weak jumps... oops, here she goes popping her combination now—so that they could get to the good stuff.

Francis intoned, "The Lian Reilly and Jordan Ares rivalry is every bit as exciting as the one between their respective coaches, Gary Gold and Igor Marchenko, who tragically died earlier this week inside this very arena."

"Nonsense. Gary Gold was the defending United States senior men's champion in 1978, and Igor Marchenko was the World Bronze Medallist when they went head-to-head for the first time as Americans. That was a much greater clash of the Titans than Jordan and Lian. Why, neither girl has yet to win a National, much less an international tide!"

"Exactly," Francis agreed. Then promptly disagreed. "Igor was quite clearly the superior skater of the two. Gary never succeeded in beating him on the international stage. In 1977, when Igor won his World Bronze Medal, Gary only finished in eleventh place. There was no reason to think he could beat Igor domestically, and he never did, not once when they were competing against each other."

Since this was a fact Bex had actually written down for him—in three different places, to make sure he saw it eventually—Francis turned to her as he said it, winking at Bex as if he'd done her a favor by indulging her little hobby and actually including some of her research in the broadcast. She smiled back and nodded encouragingly, hoping the positive feedback might prompt him to do it more often.

"Exactly," Diana agreed to disagree. "Jordan and Lian are much more evenly matched than Igor and Gary. Whenever Igor and Gary went head-to-head, we always knew who would win in advance. Jordan and Lian are two undefeated gladiators entering the great coliseum. We can only guess which one will step out alive!"

All they knew for sure was that it wouldn't be Brittany Monroe. Her program, due to the popped combination, ended up scoring lower than Lian's. She slunk off the ice, looking like she was going to cry. Bex felt duly bad about her downy death crack earlier, no matter how prophetic it turned out to be.

Galina Semenova took to the ice several minutes later, wearing a flowing white peasant blouse and a red skirt, both embroidered with matching flower patterns to suggest a traditional Russian folk costume. Even before Galina's music commenced playing, Bex began to quietly—and sarcastically—hum "Kalinka," a traditional Russian folk melody. She had barely gotten through the first verse when the sound system at the arena joined her. Bex didn't think she was being obnoxious, just experienced. When ice-dancers wore Russian peasant costumes it was because they were skating to the (actually Gypsy) "Two Guitars." When Pairs did it, it was because they'd chosen the (actually Jewish-American) Fiddler on the Roof. For men, the costume meant "Volga Boatmen" and for women, it was inevitably, "Kalinka."

Galina's short program also started with some rhythmic ice-tapping, only in this case, unlike Lian who'd smacked it with the flat of her blade to indicate her tempestuous character, Galina dug in with the back of her blade, knee straight, arms pointing proudly towards her upturned toe, to indicate her wholesome folksiness.

Francis and Diana watched the cultural display without uttering a word beyond her name. Then, Galina got down to what she did best: a triple Lutz/triple Loop combination that barely left the ground but whipped around with such speed that it seemed like her carroty curls were twirling a beat behind each revolution and actually landed after she did.

Francis said, "A gladiator, Diana, is an athlete at the ultimate peak of his condition. It is something that Igor and Gary already were in 1978 and for the four years they were competing against each other. Lian and Jordan are most certainly not, at this point, at their peak. These two young women are still developing their styles. They are not gladiators. They are not soup. These are, at best, sous-chefs."

Galina's scores came up on the electric board over their heads, indicating that she was ahead of Lian and Brittany for this phase of the competition. When such a travesty happened, a foreigner ahead of an American, the protocol was to promptly ignore Lian—now that she wasn't going to win, at least tonight; she was, in Gil's words, "dead." Instead, the focus would be on which American still could best Galina, which, in this case, was Jordan, who hadn't even skated yet.

Read more at:

Tuesday, December 04, 2012


.... Me?

This past Friday, November 30, Jordi Vilasuso, an Emmy winner for his role as Tony Santos on Guiding Light, who also appeared on All My Children, was scheduled to chat with Dan J. Kroll of Soap Central Live Radio about Paos Revolution, a company Jordi co-founded to help breathe new life into soaps in the 21st century.

Unfortunately, shortly before airtime, a medical emergency with Jordi's wife (he reports that she required some minor surgery, but is doing well now) necessitated his pulling out of the show.

That left Soap Central Live with no second guest to follow another GL alum, Karla Mosley (Christina).

Luckily, earlier that day, news had just broken about General Hospital publishing a novel to tie in with their 50th Anniversary in the Spring.

Knowing a bit of something about the soap-opera tie-in business - my books, Oakdale Confidential and Jonathan's Story both hit The New York Times best-seller list, while The Man From Oakdale won a SCRIBE Award - I volunteered my expertise on the subject.

During the program, Dan and I talked about GH, ATWT and GL, as well as tie-in projects for DOOL and Passions, and

To listen to why Dusty's death was inconvenient... for me... and other behind the scenes gossip, go to:

And tell me what you think!

Monday, December 03, 2012


No one has been more supportive of the re-release of my Figure Skating Mystery series (originally published by Berkley Prime Crime) as enhanced e-book editions with video than the readers who have followed me from ATWT's "Oakdale Confidential," "The Man From Oakdale," GL's "Jonathan's Story" and

That is why I want you all to be the first to see the cover for Book #5, "Skate Crime: Enhanced Multimedia Edition," which concludes the series and will be published later this week on Amazon and B&N, just in time for the holiday season!

I can't wait to hear what you think of it!


Rachel knew it was incredibly childish and petty of her, but she couldn’t help it.  Even though she might have easily reached over and opened the front door once she heard Iris outside it, struggling with her key, Rachel allowed the moment to continue on for almost a full minute before finally ending her stepdaughter’s misery and allowing her inside the Cory mansion.

“Rachel, thank goodness,” Iris glared.  “I don’t know what happened, but I had the most terrible time – “

“I changed the locks.”

“I’m sorry, you did what?”

“The locks.  I had them changed.  As for your personal belongings, they’ve been packed up and are sitting in the back of the car.”

“You went through my things?”

“The staff took care of it.  I have no interest in wallowing in your dirty laundry any more than I’ve already been forced to.  Everything is there, feel free to check.  The driver has been instructed to take you anywhere you’d like to go.  One way.”

Iris couldn’t believe it.  “You’re throwing me out of my own father’s home?”


Rachel lays down the law with Iris, while Kevin attempts to circumvent it with Steven.  Grant makes a confession to Marley, who goes straight to the source for more answers, while John isn't happy with the ones Sharlene gives Zeno and Allie, and Matt hears the last thing he needs from Donna.

Can you sort the truths from the lies from the in-betweens on today's episode of: