Lauren Weisberger was born March 28, 1977, in Scranton, Pennsylvania, a locale recently
made even more chic, if possible, by The Office. She was joined four
years later by sister Dana, a.k.a. The Family Favorite, and moved to Allentown,
Pennsylvania, at age eleven. At Parkland High School, Weisberger participated in all
sorts of projects, activities, and organizations for the sole purpose of padding
her college application, although she did genuinely enjoy playing varsity tennis
(especially when the girl who should have played first singles incurred a
season-ending injury and Weisberger had no choice but to step in for the team).
Once matriculated at Cornell University, all civic-minded extracurriculars fell by the wayside. There, she focused her energy on securing a steady stream of fake IDs and dating boys from the right fraternities. After graduating in 1999 with a BA in English, Weisberger moved home for the summer to save money and then traveled all over Europe, Israel, Egypt, Jordan, Thailand, India, Nepal, and Hong Kong. She carried a single small backpack and stayed in questionable places, further enriching her authentic cultural experiences by eating only Nutella and drinking Coca-Cola Light.
Lauren Weisberger's first job after returning to the U.S. and moving to Manhattan was the Assistant to the Editor-in-Chief of Vogue, Anna Wintour. She became proficient in the language of stilettos and Starbucks before moving to Departures magazine, where she wrote 100-word reviews by day and took writing classes at night. The Devil Wears Prada, begun at the Writer's Voice, was published in April 2003, and spent six months on The New York Times Bestseller List. It was sold in thirty-one foreign countries and made into a major motion picture by Fox 2000 starring Meryl Streep and Anne Hathaway. Weisberger has a half-second cameo in the film that even she is hard-pressed to locate after several viewings. Her second novel, Everyone Worth Knowing, was published in October 2005 and is also a New York Times Bestseller. Her third book, Chasing Harry Winston, was published in May 2008, and Last Night at Chateau Marmont was published in 2010.
This biography was last updated on 08/15/2011.
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A Conversation with Lauren Weisberger, author of The Devil Wears Prada
The tortures Miranda puts Andrea through are bound to become urban
legendsdid you set out to write the ultimate "boss from hell"
story with The Devil Wears Prada?
While I didn't necessarily begin writing with the intent of creating a "boss from hell" story, it's obviously a large component of the book. A lot of the anecdotes and demands and craziness are products of my imagination, stories I created at four in the morning while chugging coffee and fighting sleep deprivation. But there's reality there, too. Some of the stories aren't so far away from the tasks either I or my friends in various industries whether fashion or magazines or PR or advertising went through our first few years out of college. I imagine that assistants everywhere will recognize some of their own experiences in Andrea's life.
I know Andrea is a fictional character, but do you have any qualities in common with her? For example, do you eschew high fashion and opt for Banana Republic like Andrea at the beginning of the novel?
I see a lot of myself in Andrea, from her love of writing to ...
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