Book Excerpt: 'Stories From Candyland'

Read an excerpt from Candy Spelling's new book, "Stories From Candyland."

ByABC News
January 19, 2009, 1:05 PM

March 30, 2009— -- Candy Spelling is the matriarch of one of Hollywood's most prolific families and, now, has a few stories of her own to tell. This excerpt from "Stories From Candyland" was provided by the publisher to ABC News.

Watch Elizabeth Vargas' interview with Candy Spelling Friday on "20/20" at 10 p.m. ET

When I first heard the Fifth Dimension singing Jimmy Webb's "Up, Up, and Away" in 1967, I was in love with a man who refused to fly.

But I knew I could change him.

After all, I loved to travel and to fly, and I planned for us to travel all over the world and share once-in-a-lifetime experiences with each other.

Aaron Spelling traced his fear of flying to his service in the Air Force during World War II. He was yanked from a flight two minutes before it took off because he was sick with the flu. That flight crashed, and everyone on board was killed. Since he was expected to be on the plane, the military notified his family that he had been killed. When he arrived home later that day, his mother saw him and fainted -- and when she regained consciousness, she made him promise never to fly again.

But he was going to marry the girl who grew up watching (and falling in love with) the handsome character who was introduced with the words:

Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird. It's a plane. It's Superman!

I was dreaming of my Superman with whom I could soar to new heights of ecstasy.

A few months before Aaron and I got married, the Drifters hit the music charts with more high-flying lyrics in "Up on the Roof."

Everything pointed to upward. Man was about to go to the moon. Aaron and I would ascend to new heights together, too.

But he never did break his promise to his mother. We never flew anywhere together. We had some spectacular vacations, by car, train, and boat. And I'm not complaining.

It's just that something had gone wrong with my scenario.

The highest we ever went together was our attic, and that's far from romantic.

My attic was a well-kept family secret and a source of much laughter and eye-rolling between Aaron and me. Now that I have put my home on the market and am getting ready to move, I do have to go up, up, and away, and figure out what to do with everything that's up there.

I hadn't given it a lot of thought until one of the Realtors spotted a stairway going up from the second floor and wanted to know where it led.

"To the attic," I mumbled.

"How big is the attic?" the Realtor asked -- innocently, I'm sure. "Mumble, mumble, oh, about seventeen thousand, um square feet."


And then we went up to the attic.

He was speechless. I thought it might be a little overwhelming to a first-timer. I go up there so often that it's just routine for me.

Now it has become a math problem, and math's not my favorite subject.

I have an attic that covers just over 17,000 square feet. I'm moving into a new condominium that will be a total of 17,000 square feet. My current living space is 56,500 square feet.

The arithmetic goes something like this: 17,000 – (56,500+17,000) = much less space -- and my having to get rid of an awful lot of possessions.

My attic is a source of amazement to the few people who had previously seen it. Much of what operates the house, from the heating and air-conditioning units to the mechanical lift that raises and lowers the chandelier in the entry hall, is housed in the attic. (I'm told that the lift was over-engineered so that it could raise and lower something as heavy as a Volkswagen, but I can't imagine why I'd want to hand a VW in my entry hall.)

The attic, like the house, is shaped like a W. Originally, the house was going to be called L'Oiseau ("Bird") but my French pronunciation isn't that good, and we liked "The Manor" more. I never considered the name Tara, although I have a staircase that Scarlett O' Hara would have descended beautifully.

My doll-designing rooms are in the attic, and I store many dolls there that are not on display in my downstairs doll museum. I've got the fabrics from which I made their clothes, and the drawings, color swatches, paper samples for boxes, and everything else an efficient doll designer would need. There are probably some non-necessities, too, but once I'd found stands to hold doll wigs and doll-size hair blowers, how could I resist?