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Meredith has written a book!

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Untied-Memoir-Family-Fame-Floundering/dp/0307719308/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1297460845&sr=8-1

BN.com: http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Untied/Meredith-Baxter/e/9780307719300/?itm=2&USRI=meredith+baxter+untied

Indiebound.com: http://www.indiebound.org/book/9780307719300

BOOK DESCRIPTION:

“I remember Sarah asking me, when I’d just begun therapy with her, what I looked for in a man.  After a few moments of silent, tense deliberation I had it.  ‘Hair,’ I blurted. ‘He has to have hair.’”

Meredith Baxter is a beloved and iconic television actress, most well-known for her enormously popular role as hippie mom, Elyse Keaton, on Family Ties. Her warmth, humor, and brilliant smile made her one of the most popular women on television, with millions of viewers following her on the small screen each week. Yet her success masked a tumultuous personal story and a harrowing private life. For the first time, Baxter is ready to share her incredible highs, (working with Robert Redford, Doris Day, Lana Turner, and the cast of Family Ties), and lows (a thorny relationship with her mother, a difficult marriage to David Birney, a bout with breast cancer), finally revealing the woman behind the image.

From her childhood in Hollywood, growing up the daughter of actress and co-creator of One Day at a Time Whitney Blake, Baxter became familiar with the ups and downs of show business from an early age. After wholeheartedly embracing the 60s counterculture lifestyle, she was forced to rely on her acting skills after her first divorce left her a 22-year-old single mother of two. Baxter began her professional career with supporting roles in the critically panned horror film Ben, and in the political thriller All the President's Men.

More lucrative work soon followed on the small screen. Baxter starred with actor David Birney as the title characters in controversial sitcom Bridget Loves Bernie. While the series only lasted a year, her high-profile romance with Birney lasted 15 volatile and unhappy years. Hiding the worst of her situation from even those closest to her, Baxter’s career flourished as her self-esteem and family crumbled. Her successful run as Nancy on Family was followed by her enormously popular role on Family Ties, and dozens of well-received television movies.

After a bitter divorce and custody battle with Birney, Baxter increasingly relied on alcohol as a refuge, and here speaks candidly of her decision to take her last drink in 1990.

And while another ruinous divorce to screenwriter Michael Blodgett taxed Baxter’s strength and confidence, she has emerged from her experiences with the renewed self-assurance, poise, and understanding that have enabled her to find a loving, respectful relationship with Nancy Locke, and to speak about it openly.

Told with insight, wit, and disarming frankness, Untied is the eye-opening and inspiring life of an actress, a woman, and a mother who has come into her own.

 

Sad News from Meredith    May 14, 2010

Allan Manings dies at 86; comedy writer and co-creator of 'One Day at a Time'

Manings, the stepfather of actress Meredith Baxter, wrote for 'Leave It to Beaver' and won an Emmy for 'Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In' before creating the CBS sitcom with his wife, Whitney Blake.

 

 
 

Allan Manings dies at 86; TV comedy writer and co-creator of 'One Day at a Time'

The stepfather of actress Meredith Baxter wrote for 'Leave It to Beaver' and won an Emmy for 'Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In' before creating the CBS sitcom with his late wife, actress Whitney Blake.

Allan Manings | 1924-2010

Allan Manings, seen about 1985, and his late wife, actress Whitney Blake, created the TV sitcom “One Day at a Time.” (none, unknown / May 14, 2010)


 

Allan Manings, a television comedy writer and producer who created the situation comedy "One Day at a Time" with his late wife, actress Whitney Blake, has died. He was 86.

Manings, who recently underwent surgery for esophageal cancer, died after going into cardiac arrest Wednesday at his oncologist's office in Beverly Hills, said his stepdaughter, actress Meredith Baxter.

In a career that began in the 1950s,
Manings wrote for TV shows such as "Leave It to Beaver," "Petticoat Junction" and "McHale's Navy."

As a writer on the comedy sensation "Roman & Martin's Laugh-In," Manings was part of a team that won the 1968 Emmy for outstanding writing achievement in a musical or variety program.

 

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He came into TV producer Norman Lear's fold as a writer and an executive producer on "Good Times," the 1974-79 CBS sitcom about a black family living in the South Side of Chicago and starring Esther Rolle, John Amos and Jimmie Walker.

Tapping his wife's memories of having been raised by a divorced mother and her own experiences as a divorced mother before they were married, Manings and
Blake created "One Day at a Time" for Lear's company.

The 1975-84 CBS sitcom starred Bonnie Franklin as the mom and Mackenzie Phillips and Valerie Bertinelli as her teenage daughters.

"He was a wonderful man and a wonderful writer," Lear said of Manings on Friday.

Getting a series about a divorced single woman with children on the air in the 1970s "was difficult," Lear said. With a chuckle, he added: "We were living in other times; we were growing in awareness."

A lifelong advocate for social justice, Manings often dealt with those kinds of issues in his writing.

Lear said he and Manings were "totally politically sympatico."

"This man knew his citizenship mattered, and he lived that way. As a voter, as a thinker, as an American, he knew what mattered. He was a concerned, caring, generous soul. And a hell of a writer."

Long active in the Writers Guild of America, Manings received its Morgan Cox Award in 1997. The award is presented to "that member or group of members whose vital ideas, continuing efforts and personal sacrifice best exemplify the ideal of service to the guild."

At the time, Manings had served on the guild's board of directors for 12 years, on the advisory board for the guild magazine and on more than 20 different guild committees.

"Allan was one of the funniest men you would ever know,"
Baxter
said. "I call him Sweetheart Cranky Pants, because he's rough and blustering, a very outspoken liberal but a terrific, funny man and a real softy."

Manings most recently wrote a play, "Goodbye Louie … Hello," a comedy-drama dealing with a family's memories. It will be produced by Theatre West in Los Angeles in the coming months.


He was born March 28, 1924, in Newark, N.J., and grew up on Staten Island. After serving in the Army in the Pacific during World War II, he joined other returning GIs to become the first male students at Sarah Lawrence College.

Manings' wife
died in 2002.

In addition to Baxter, he is survived by two stepsons, Richard and Brian Baxter; his sister, Muriel Manings; nine grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Services are pending.

dennis.mclellan@latimes.com


 
 
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