Please help me welcome back to the blog, super model Carol Alt! Carol was with us once before when her first novel, This Year's Model, came out last year and after I read Model, Incorporated, I wanted to speak to her again. This book is really different than any others I’ve read dealing with the topic of modeling. It’s a very intimate, realistic view that shows the good and bad, not just the glamorous.
KP: How was writing this second book, Model, Incorporated different from the first one?
CA: These two writing experiences were different in many ways. With the first book, we (Lynda Curnyn and I) were trying to find the voice and the style of book. I think we really found a good balance the first time. You have to understand, it’s very difficult to narrow down years of experiences into a streamlined narrative. With that first book, I felt like I’d written a lot – fifteen pages to answer one question. It was a very interesting process.
With the second book, Lynda wasn't available, so I worked with the ghost writer from the Gossip Girls series,Rumaan Alam . He has a vast experience in fashion industry and I didn’t have to explain as much. He understood the excitement and the nerves, and knew what it was like to be on a photo shoot so it was really a matter of telling stories and having them translated.
KP: How was the story different from the last book since you're giving us more of the modeling life experience?
CA: Model Incorporated sets up the story of where Mac came from, how she became who she is. She had huge decisions to make that weighed heavily on her, a scholarship to consider, the issue of where to live, of how seriously she should pursue modeling. It’s important to know where she came from and what kept her grounded.
KP: Why not write your memoirs? This book seems like such an intimate peek into your life.
I’ve been asked that question before and I always say I’m not through living yet! The idea of writing a memoir makes me feel like it’s over and done. And although I have a lot of advice to share and experience that young models can learn from, I worried that eighteen-year-olds wouldn’t listen to a forty-eight-year-old! This was a way to put all that advice into a character that’s relatable, so girls could get the idea of what’s important in the business. I felt like girls coming in had no one to look up to, to help them out. They come from faraway places, will do anything to help them get a job – a way wrong approach. I wanted to tell them be careful! Heed what your agent says; don’t do things outside the agency. I listened to my agent and I know doing that saved my life.
KP: Will there be a third book in this series?
CA: That’s really up to the publisher and up to how the book sells. I’d love to do another one. I certainly have plenty more stories to share!
KP: What last bit of advice can you leave us with for any girls out there who might be interested in modeling?
CA: Well, for any business, it’s really very important to conduct yourself in a manner appropriate to that business. Dress appropriately, be presentable. The first impression is the lasting impression. People decide right then if they like you and want to work with you. You never know when you’re going to meet the one person who’s going to change things.
KP: Thanks for being with us today. I hope everyone gets a copy of Model, Incorporated – it was a fast, fun, interesting read that I highly recommend. The peek into the world of modeling was riveting!