Tuesday, December 1, 2009
An Interview with Jennifer Jabaley
1. How did you get the idea for Lipstick Apology?
So many people ask me this! Here's the true story how I dreamed up the idea for LIPSTICK APOLOGY: My sister and I are very close. Several years ago she had two children and I had none. She was about to go on her very first vacation without the kids and she was freaking out a little bit. The night before her flight she called me about ten times, each time telling me random information "in case the flight goes down". Yes, she is a bit dramatic like I tend to be. Information about our wills is here...The key to the safety box is here...If you have to sell the house call this person...When the phone rang for the six or seventh time I turned to my husband and said, Can you imagine, the flight would be going down and she would whip out her lipstick and start outlining the kid's schedule and bedtimes on a tray table. My husband laughed and said that would be a great idea for a book. So I grabbed a post it note and scribbled "note on a tray table". I stashed that post-it note in my drawer and didn't see it again until almost a year later when I was packing to move. And that post it note became the inspiration for my story. Important note: although the idea came from real life, there is absolutely no truth to any part of LIPSTICK APOLOGY.
2. Lipstick Apology has some really sad scenes in it. Was it hard to write them?
Yes. My nature tends to be light and happy-go-lucky so the grief scenes were particularly hard. What made it easier was that I didn't want this story to be about sadness - I wanted it to be about moving on. Therefore I tried to keep the grief in the backdrop - the readers know she's sad because of the circumstances but experience more of the after effects of grief: Emily's rollercoaster of emotions.
3. Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
Yes - simply never give up!! Many of life's failures happen when people do not realize how close they came to success when they chose to give up.
4. What made you decide to have Emily's mom write her apology in lipstick?
I guess I figured that would work best. A plane tray table is a hard plastic that I don't think ball point pen would work on. Unless her mother had a marker in her purse, what else could she use? Of course I loved the idea of her using make up since Emily then has to go live with a make up artist - it's like an everyday reminder of her mother's chosen instrument to scrawl her final words.
5. Is there anything you would like to add?
Thank you so much to everyone who has read and enjoyed my book! I so appreciate all the letters and emails I've received. It warms my heart to think someone read my story and enjoyed the ride.
Posted by Zoe at 12:00 AM