'Trixie and Katya's Guide to Modern Womanhood' is out now.
Ready to learn all about what it means to be a real woman? Trixie Mattel and Katya Zamolodchikova have got you covered.
The RuPaul's Drag Race stars are taking their many talents to the literary world this week, with their satirical self-help book, Trixie and Katya's Guide to Modern Womanhood.
"It is hard and sturdy," Katya tells ET's Brice Sander of the tome. "You could knock somebody out with it."
"It's the first drag queen book you won't wanna use as a doorstop," Trixie adds.
The duo met while filming season 7 of Drag Race, though they didn't become "one of the most celebrated friendships in modern media" until after their season ended. A professional partnership followed, with the two teaming up for a popular web series, UNHhhh, in which they discuss everything from makeup to money to malevolent landlords, in a rapid-fire conversational style that also lends itself to their writing.
"A lot of the ways we make each other laugh, it happens to be the type of tone that really does translate pretty well," Trixie notes. "This book really is like the same flavor as UNHhhh or anything else." (Case in point: When Katya jokes that penning her half of the book was a "return to myself," Trixie fires back: "I would like to return her," and both devolve into cackles.)
The friends and collaborators admit they approached the process of shaping their sections of the book differently. While Katya has "always dreamed" of writing, Trixie came at it with a bit more apprehension.
"[This is] one of the first things I've done with drag where I have no mental blueprint of like, 'I've always wanted this, I know exactly what to do,''" she shares. "But I work really well with a theme, and once we started building it as, like, a women's guide, I had this old '60s home economics textbook and I read that and that really got my gears going."
"Like, OK, it's satirical and we're making fun of the expectations of women, but also, in turn, comforting women by telling them like, 'Just so you know, all this is bullsh*t, you don't have to be anything, but if you do want to strive for something, here's our idiot way of how we would do it.'"
"She's a really great joke writer, so she has a real strong command of structure," Katya raves. "That obviously translates to the page... I was really impressed and inspired."
"It was actually very motivating, because when I read her sections, I'm like, on the one hand, I'm so happy my name is on this, because she's really funny," Trixie praises in return. "On the other hand, I'm like, 'Holy sh*t, hers is funny, so it's like I have to try to really [step it up]."
In their Modern Guide to Womanhood, the queens tackle some expected topics, like makeup and hair -- the Trixie Cosmetics maven takes the former while Katya tackles everything from "The Rachel" to the "The Karen" in her updo how-to. But they also put a lighthearted spin on more serious subjects like drugs, a topic about which Katya notes she's intimately acquainted.
"I think drug addicts have the most sense of humor about drugs," she explains. "I struggled with the tone of that a lot... It was a tough kind of balance and it was just, keep it informative, comedic, and also a little bit like, at the end of the day, don't do it."
"I think we both feel like, if you're not gonna joke about the worst things in your life, what can you joke about?" Trixie adds. "It's your personal story. You're not speaking for everyone."
Equal parts self-help and glamour gallery, the pair can't help but joke when reflecting on what they learned in the process of penning their first book. "I am categorically, undeniably, pathetically, the most egregious procrastinator," Katya admits. "It is breathtaking how I will wait to the last minute and then I will dangle off the edge of last minute, until I'm about to die."
As for what Trixie learned? "Just that I'm beautiful and intelligent.... I mean, we are beautiful, but I kind of forget, like, oh my god," she says.
Their cultural deep dive did reveal a few surprising truths, like the fact that Trixie has never watched the iconic '90s sitcom Friends ("Katya was like, 'You're missing nothing,'" she notes. "'It's people who are friends.'"), though they're both of course tuned in for All Stars 5, and have some non-controversial opinions on the front-runners.
"We're all watching Drag Race going, 'I'm so glad I'm not competing against Shea Couleé,'" Trixie admits.
"Shea and I have been doing shows together since way back," she adds of her fellow Midwestern diva. "She's one of those drag queens who never looked bad. There was no, like, growth period... You know she has an education in costume design? She can rap, she can sing, she can dance, and she's f**kin' excellence."
While in agreement that Shea personifies "drag excellence," Katya has a "very brave" take on her personal All Star: She's rooting for Jujubee.
"Drag Race gets clarified down to little moments and soundbites that resonate, and once a queen is off the show, they'll be parroted back to you ad nauseam forever," she notes. "That f**kin' thermostat [bit] from 'Snatch Game of Love'... I mean, I thought she should've won the challenge."
"I think the game of All Stars is like, be proud of who you might lose to," Trixie, an All Stars winner herself, agrees. "There's so many good options...You're not a loser, 'cause you lose to somebody amazing."
Win or lose, you can still write a book. "We have it on hardcover, we have it on e-book and we even did an audiobook of our real voices," Trixie pitches.
"I can't wait to see it in a school library," Katya adds. "And if you have a Vitamix at home, you can blend it into a nice shake."
Trixie and Katya’s Guide to Modern Womanhood is available now.
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