Talk to the Guest who was "Broke Before it was Cool!"

Did you know that the recent federal bailout is enough to buy 3.5 trillion packs of ramen noodles? Or that Benjamin Franklin (of “A penny saved is a penny earned” fame) was overdrawn on his account at least three times a week?  Or that in each of the past four years more Americans declared personal bankruptcy than graduated from college?


These are the kinds of facts that author Laura Lee discovered while writing BROKE IS BEAUTIFUL (Running Press; April 2010).  But she didn’t write the book just to share quirky facts—she wrote it because she wanted to share with people what she discovered in her own life:  Broke can indeed be beautiful!


So while other books may want to make you a millionaire or show you how to grow yourself rich, Lee’s book does what seldom books about money do—it  praises the cash-strapped life. Part humor and part social commentary, BROKE IS BEAUTIFUL is an unconventional take on a subject that is relevant to each and every one of us.


In an interview, Lee can discuss:


For many, money makes the world go around. Find out why author Laura Lee thinks that’s unfortunate.

Questions for Laura Lee,


(Running Press; April 2010; $12.95; Paperback Original)




1.      Your book is called “Broke is Beautiful.”  What does “broke is beautiful” mean? Is it tongue in cheek or do you really think being broke can be a good thing?


2.      Is being “broke” different from being “poor”?


3.      You say in your book that you “were broke before it was cool.”  Was this book written as a reaction to the recession? Or is this something you could have written before our current economic troubles?


4.      There are a lot of books out there that promise to make people rich.  Do you think there is really a market for a book on how to enjoy being broke?


5.      Everyone has heard of the “starving artist.”  Is there a connection between a lack of money and creativity?


6.      Broke is Beautiful does not focus a great deal on the practical aspects of saving money.  It is more focused on the social and emotional aspects of coping with a low income.  Why did you take this approach?


7.      Do you have a problem with the “American Dream”?  Are you saying capitalism is evil?  Isn’t accepting being broke just giving up and being lazy?


8.      You have written books like The Pocket Encyclopedia of Aggravation and a book on Elvis impersonation.  Is this a more personal topic for you?


9.      You are a fan of using social capitalism—networking with people—instead of financial capital, to get things done.  Would you say Facebook and other social networking sites are a step in the right direction?


10.  Are you sure money can’t buy happiness?




Publicity Contact:  Seta Zink, Running Press, 215-567-5371,