Former Hill staffers Alicia Long and Jayne Jones are out with a new novel that draws on their combined nine years of working in the Senate -- Jones worked for Sen. Norman Coleman, R-Minn., and Long for Coleman, Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., and Sen. George Allen, R-Va. But "Capitol Hell" is not Washingtonienne Part 2.
"We didn't want it come off as a tell-all, or something that was negative," Long assured Yeas & Nays. Plus, the characters are fictional. (In other words, no stories of cocaine use after hours in the Dirksen Building.)
But Long and Jones did use tweaked versions of their own stories of Hill life for the book, like going on a date with a lobbyist who expenses the dinner. Like the authors, the protagonist is a Midwestern girl who moves to D.C. and ends up drinking a lot of margaritas at Tortilla Coast, but her senator boss is fictional.
"People are going to speculate," Long says about the book's potential to be read as truth. "But that's part of the risk I guess of writing a book." She has already reached out to her former employers to let them know it's coming. Thune's communications director wanted to see it, Long said, but she added that "everyone has been very supportive."