Study No. 2 · Crystal Meers · Writer / Creative Director

Crystal Meers

A voracious reader, Crystal lives in a boho-Japanese-inspired modern home at the top of a palm tree sprinkled Silver Lake canyon, surrounded by beloved books and travel souvenirs. Though she's a native East Coaster, Crystal greeted us at her door in perfect California Summer babe style—barefoot in an Indian caftan . . . all Jane Asher-esque auburn locks and good vibes. She was armed with herbal teas, French pastries on Heath pottery, and a gift—Recipes For Living in Big Sur (1982), thoughtfully chosen because she knew we had just returned from a road trip to that hippie haven. She's a generous soul when it comes to her books, apologizing for the modest size of her collection, due to frequent lending and gifting to friends she knows will dig them as much as she does. Her library holds a colorful mix of reads that would satisfy any well-traveled sophisticate; daydreaming flower child; aspiring gourmand; or DIY-minded punk. As a former deputy editor for Daily Candy, and creative director/writer for the experiential travel site Fathom, she’s one of those rare birds that can always point you to the latest foodie hang, obscure decor shop, or gallery that sells hard-to-find ‘zines.

Crystal’s combined love of food and periodicals led her to co-create the baking ‘zine, Treat Sheet, along with her close friend, cookbook author, Claire Crespo. Together they also run the Treat Street mobile bakery, which occasionally makes appearances at local parties and bake sales.

Crystal flipping through Linda McCartney's Life in Photographs (2005).

Some of Crystal's most beautiful books; a journal about life in Japan's woodsy Karuizawa highlands, the embroidered linen cover of illustrator Deanne Cheuk's Mushroom Girls Virus (2005), and Gloria Vanderbilt's Book of Collage (1970).

Profession: Writer / creative consultant

In a bookstore or library, you head straight for: I look for staff recommends in the fiction section, then cruise non-fiction, then spend the rest of my time with the art books, cookbooks, and magazines.

Your library is organized by: Subject, color, and/or size.

Your favorite place to read: On a plane! So many hours to read, so few interruptions. Also good: on the beach.

Last great book you read: Saturday Night by Susan Orlean

Book that made you laugh out loud: Bossypants by Tina Fey. I laughed just typing that.

Books you loved as a child: Where the Sidewalk Ends and Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House on the Prairie series

Books on your wish list: Vampires in the Lemon Grove: And Other Stories by Karen Russell, Swans: Legends of the Jet Society by Nicholas Foulkes, elBulli 2005-2011 by Ferran Adria

Most beautiful books in your library: There are so many gorgeous books. I love Deanne Cheuk's Mushroom Girl Virus and the handsome scrapbookiness of Gonzo, but I have to say Karuizawa Retreat, a simple, quiet, beautifully art directed book of country life in the Japanese Alps is very special to me.

Favorite Bookshop: Book Soup in West Hollywood

Favorite private and/or public libraries: John Jermain Memorial Library in Sag Harbor, NY

Fictional character you most admire: Artemis is pretty neat -- especially in The Olympians: Aphrodite to Zeus by Susan Chambers and Cayce Chambers Cole.

Guilty pleasure read: Twilight. So guilty. Gone Girl. Oh gosh.

What book would change the world, if everyone were required to read it: Food Rules: An Eater's Manual by Michael Pollan.

Book that inspired you to become a writer: The Babysitters Club series was so full of teenage entrepreneurial spirit! I have also always loved periodicals and magazines, from randomness like Cometbus to (everyone's favorite) Sassy.

What are you currently writing: A to-do list.

Which of your own works is the most meaningful to you: It's a tie: "I'm Not Weird, I'm from California," written on assignment for my 6th grade teacher at Sag Harbor Elementary, where I was the new kid, or the first person essay on my love of office supplies that was published in a zine called Flatter! when I was in 9th grade.  I may have peaked early.

Your writing ritual or habit: I must face a window. I like to think the answers are out there somewhere.

Favorite line, passage or poem: The table of contents -- and everything else -- in I Amaze Myself completely blows my mind.

Crystal reading from Kay McConaughey's fun memoir, I Amaze Myself (McConaughey Enterprises, 2008)


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