Donna Arp Weitzman is known among her friends as the “accidental author.” But now, with one book published and another on the way, the Preston Hollow resident and former Colleyville mayor doesn’t show signs of stopping.
Her book Cinderella Has Cellulite: And Other Musings from a Last Wife came out of a compilation of personal musings and stories from girlfriends, and some serendipitous run-ins with editors and illustrators. Full of sass, advice, and experiences from dating later in life, Weitzman covers everything from age differences to nips and tucks in her first book.
“I just started writing down things that had happened to me. I really never even intended to publish it, but I would read my little short stories to my friends when we would meet for happy hour,” she said. “They started all chiming in, telling me their own dating stories, and it just all came together. It only became a book through the encouragement of those women.”
Weitzman, who has been married to real-estate magnate Herb Weitzman for four years, knows the struggles of dating later in life.
“I was married for 26 years, and after I got divorced, I went through so many situations, some daunting and traumatic, some that brought tears, and some that brought laughter,” she said. “We all tote along our baggage. My baggage is life experiences. We all have bumps and bruises — that’s the cellulite.”
She reiterates in the book that having a realistic outlook of what Prince Charming looks like later in life, baggage and all, is one of the most important aspects of dating at a later age.
“Most of us women, regardless of age, think we’re Cinderella and that our Prince Charming will sweep us off our feet and we’ll never have another worry,” Weitzman said. “But that’s not how it works. ”
The first edition of her book was self-published but quickly was picked up by a publishing house after the first 1,000 copies flew off Dallas shelves. Weitzman’s second book, Prince Charming Has a Migraine, which she is currently finishing, takes men’s perspectives on dating later in life into account.
“I think one of the biggest problems is that later in life we can become very negative and hesitant. We may feel guilt or shame, because of past experiences,” she said. “But we need to say that every day is the time to have a better experience. Whatever life was up until the new relationship should be unflinchingly accepted, and the focus should be on the future.”