Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Redneck Mule

“Go someplace you feel most like yourself.”      
That’s a quote from The Lake House with Sandra Bullock. When I first heard it, I wondered, “Where do I feel most like myself?”
In spite of what I might lead people to believe, it’s not in a college classroom or a corporate conference room. I’m good at those things, but that’s not who I am. I’m a farm girl who plays those roles as an end to a means—paying the mortgage. Most of my job is customer service and I’m required to smile when I might prefer to scowl and tell people to bite me.
I grew up hooking weeds from beans, scooping manure from stalls, bucking hay bales, and riding horses and dirt bikes. I was a bit of a mule. Corn fed, as my husband likes to put it.
So now, to balance the goody-goody stuff of my everyday life, I write comedy and grit. I never grew out of being a redneck mule, and I don’t want to. That’s why Larry and I write alike. Because deep down inside, we are a lot alike.
Writing humor is fun. I can make the characters respond to a situation differently from how I normally would—they don’t have to smile and say, “Yes, of course!” when they can respond, “That makes zero sense!” For me, that’s what makes writing fun. The comedy. The action. The grit.
In those things, I feel most like myself.

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