So, Jessica, Could you start by giving us us a brief summary of All Mascara is Not Created Equal?
All Mascara is Not Created Equal is intended to present lighthearted, witty, and spiritually sound advice to young women and girls in “tweet-like” form to help them live a life God would approve of.
Ah, the joys of tweeting, but I'm sure twitter's not really where you go the idea to write from. is it?
I actually started writing the book specifically for my tween daughter and intended to give it her as she entered middle school. Those years can be tough. As a parent, I’m very concerned about the message culture is marketing to our youth. It contradicts the way God has called us to live.
That sounds a pretty serious message. How did you come up with the playful title?
Anyone who knows me, knows that I love mascara. I had tried several brands over the years and finally discovered a fantastic mascara that I just loved. It was full of minerals and actually nourished your lashes. Plus, it created a very full lash. I would always joke with daughter, saying that if you remember anything I tell you remember that ‘All Mascara Is Not Created Equal.’
Speaking as someone who has never worn or dreamed of wearing mascara (can you tell I don't have daughters?) that sounds kind of fun. Maybe I'd have to tell my sons something like all modeling kits aren't created equal. But how long did it take you to write the book? Do you have any stories you can share of how you gathered specific quotes or advice?
You could say the book took most of my life to write, as my experiences growing up and parenting are what shaped it. But, in actuality, it only took about a year to record them and fine-tune them. Most of them wrote themselves. I would be having a conversation with my kids, and all of a sudden I would give some advice. If I liked it, I would later record it. In fact, as I was compiling the tips, my kids would remind me of the things I had told them through the years.
Some of the tips are just reflections of the advice my mother and father passed on to me. Of course, they needed a little tweaking. I didn’t have to deal with the pressures of social media and cell phones when I was growing up.
But we had our own different pressures didn't we? Did you have any challenges when writing this book? If so, what were they?
The only challenge I really faced was stopping. At some point, I had to say, this is enough. I will most certainly continue to give my daughter (and son) advice as they continue to mature, but there definitely needed to be a stopping point for the book.
And those kids really do mature don't they? So, time now for me to ask if you can give readers some information about the woman behind the book. How would you describe yourself?
Practical. Organized. Planner. These are some words that my close circle of friends and family would use to describe me. And I can’t argue with that. But, when the Holy Spirit asks me to do something, all that goes out the door. Jesus’ love for me is the most important thing in my life. My goal is that everyone would experience this type of love, which is why I am so quick to abandon my plans and do what God wants me to do.
On a fun note, I am married to my high school sweetheart. I was only 16 when we started dating. He was a football player and I was a cheerleader. You don’t get any cuter than that! God has blessed us with two beautiful children who are my absolute joy.
Also, I just love Yorkies, which is why you see them all throughout the book. One day, when the timing is right, I will add one to our family.
Nice! What do you hope readers take away from All Mascara is Not Created Equal?
I hope women learn that pop culture shouldn’t define the kind of women we become. I hope that they see that life is hard, but Jesus will be your comforter and strength. I hope that every woman sees her beauty, even before she puts on her mascara. Our inner beauty is so much more important than anything on the outside.
Can you tell us more about the ministry behind the book, Women Get Real?
Women Get Real Ministries is all about “getting real” with other women. All too often, women put on the façade that everything is just perfect. But, in reality, they are silently suffering with issues like fear, anxiety, depression, body image, and faith. We break the rules about what is and is not acceptable to talk about, to try and reach the hearts of women providing them with hope and healing.
And finally, where can we find you online and purchase the book?
Books are available through my website, www.womengetreal.org and on Amazon. It is also being sold at many boutique stores in Connecticut.
Thank you so much Jessica. I really enjoyed "talking" with you.
And here, for our readers, is a cool introduction to the book:
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media are sending mixed messages about the way we, as women, are to live our lives. Catch phrases like “YOLO” and “swag” are distorting the ideals that we should strive for. Women have more to contribute to society than being sexy, and we certainly shouldn’t attach our worth to how many likes we get on a selfie.
As a mother to a tween daughter and a teenage son, I have learned a few things about life along the way. This book is full of valuable tips or bits of wisdom that I have learned, or heard from my parents, while growing up.
Some of them are quite spiritual and have helped me through some difficult times. Some of them are practical and certainly would have helped me to avoid some major overreactions to the silliest of things. Some are just plain amusing. They stem from those eureka moments where I was like “That is so true!” Like, who knew that the thread count of sheets really does make a difference?
This is not just another book where a mother and her daughter walk hand-in-hand in the garden as the mom passes along life lessons. This book is more of a woman-to-woman guidebook for life.
Now about mascara...how many of you look at celebrities and are like, there is no way their lashes can be that full! You’ve tried to layer coat after coat with your mascara and wonder why your lashes still look like, well, your lashes. You think, am I applying this wrong? Maybe I need a special brush? No.
All mascara is NOT created equal! This was news to me. I don’t care how much your current mascara costs, it still might not be good. There ARE mascaras that are superior to others. You just need to find the right one.
So, as you read through the pages of this book, grab a cup of tea, and let these tips sink in. Don’t get distracted by what society is trying to tell you to become; walk in the plan God has for you. You are God’s beautiful creation, and He has a wonderful plan for your life.
With thanks to PRBytheBook for introducing me to this book.