Monday, July 19, 2010

Interview with Author Kersten Campbell - Humorist Writer

Kersten Campbell is the author of a humorous book called Confessions of a Completely Insane Mother. Kersten said, “It has always been my belief that we, as women, need to laugh more. Mothers experience some of the most stressful working conditions on the planet, and stress can be dangerous to women’s overall health and longevity. Humor can reduce stress.”


I’ve always heard that laughter is the best medicine. The Reader’s Digest wrote, “Scientific evidence has shown that laughter helps people breathe easier and it massages the heart and other vital organs… In experiments, students who watched funny movies were found to have an increased flow of infection-fighting proteins in their saliva.” If this is true, then laughter is definitely the best medicine. Kersten, will you please tell us about your new book?

"Confessions" is a book full of humor stories about life with five kids and a mother who is far from perfect. In fact, that's why I wrote the book, so that women would be inspired to relax and enjoy motherhood and realize that nobody is perfect. I hoped it would inspire them to laugh at the little disasters that happen every day in family life. The message is: Just do your best, enjoy your family, and rely on the Savior to make up the difference.

Your book sounds fascinating. Where did you get your ideas?

I get all of my ideas from real life experiences. I carry little index cards around in all my pockets so that I'll never miss recording the funny things my kids do. And they do some funny things, especially when they interact with my husband, who is the straight man in the family. I love to record all of it for later use. One example is when my daughter made us "chocolate chip" soup for lunch. That turned into a really great story combined with some of the funny things she had said to me earlier in the week.

Chocolate chip soup? Oh my! It’s hard to imagine. What do your children think about your writing? Do they suspect that you’re writing about them?

My kids love that there is a book published about all their exploits. They love to laugh at themselves and they share the funny stories with their friends and teachers. The neighbor kids are all begging me to put them in the next book. My kids are really hoping for movie rights but I'm not getting their hopes up. Hee hee.

One reviewer said about Confessions, "I seriously laughed until I cried.” How do you know when you’ve got a real hilarious story to tell? And what is a Humorist's License?

Many people think writing humor is all laughter and fun, but actually it is really hard work. It takes a lot of planning the timing and surprises and combinations of humor elements. So in actuality you can take anything and make it funny. You just have to learn about humor writing techniques.... one of which is exaggeration... (I call it Humorist's License). There are many great books that teach the formulas for humor writing. One of the best books I've read is called, Comedy Writing Secrets, by Melvin Helitzer.

So now I know what a Humorist License is. Okay, tell us something about the real you that we’ll never forget.

It's true that I don't sort my laundry and I am addicted to chocolate donuts. Okay...maybe you didn't want to go that deep into my psyche, but the truth about me is that I love people. I love the human condition...that we all have faults and that we need to rely upon each other and the Savior to be successful. That was part of the plan before we came here. So I don't think we, as women, should feel bad about ourselves when we're not perfect. If you want to feel better about yourself...you can read a new humor story each month on my blog: www.kersten4.blogspot.com. I hope the stories will make you smile and bring some joy to your day! Thank you so much Linda for the fun interview!

Thank you, Kersten. I enjoyed getting to know you. So... everyone, is laughter the best medicine after all?

32 comments:

Jennifer Walker said...

This book (and author) sound like a lot of fun! I hope I'm eligible for the give-away!

jennifer@authorjennwalker.com

mom2girls said...

Your sounds like a modern day Erma Bombeck - one of my favorite writters as I grew up stealing her books away from my mom! I would love to know more about the Chocolate chip soup! My kids love to "cook" to!
tracyschultz@yahoo.com

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

No need to enter me, Linda. I'm dropping in to say thanks for the e-mail. I've got this posted at Win a Book for you.

Christine H said...

Oh what a fun title that alone would make me pick up this book! I'd just love to win this book! Thanks for the giveaway!!! :)

chirth7@yahoo.com

baileythebookworm said...

I think my mom would really get a kick out of this book -she's got 3 of us running around (me, looking for grad schools; sister starting high school; high-energy little brother!), so she can definitely identify with insanity. She could use a good laugh, and it looks like this book definitely provides a lot of those!

baileythebookworm[at]gmail[dot]com

Mutti said...

That sounds a lot like me~ I would love to read it and would love to win it! Thank you for the opportunity!

Anonymous said...

The chocolate soup story would be great to read. I hope that incident is included. I need some extra laugh out loud humor so please enter my name in your drawing.

Helen Kiker
hdkiker@comcast.net

Shannon said...

I would love to give it a try. Sometimes it's either laugh or cry with my kids.

tiredwkids at live dot com

karenk said...

i agree...laughter is the best medicine :)

karenk
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

holdenj said...

Oh, what a great title! I am so interesting in this book, thanks for the info and chance to win.
JHolden955(at)gmail(dot)com

AmandaSue said...

Sounds like an awesome book, although not so sure the chocolate chip soup is so awesome haha :)

unforgetable_dreamer_always(at)hotmail.com

- Marybeth I. said...

Looks hysterical in a sad but true style. Pls. enter my name into the hat

misaacmom at gmail dot com

A Musing Mother said...

Laughter is definitely the best medicine!

Mary said...

I love reading funny books, laughing while reading...there's nothing better.

miztik_rose@yahoo.com

Cheryl said...

I need this book now! LOL! I'm torn between waiting to see if I win and picking up a copy right away.

Thanks for the chance to win.

Cheryl

cg20pm00(at)gmail(dot)com

allisonsbj3 said...

This book sounds like the perfect gift for all the moms I know!

allisonsbj3(at)gmail(dot)com

Meredith said...

I love humorous books!

meredithfl at gmail dot com

"Suzanne" said...

As a new mom I would love to read this book!! Also looking forward to reading a new funny story each month on her blog :)

suzanneculp@gmail.com

Dockdancer said...

You remind me so much of my mother and the pearls of wisdom you share took me back to my childhood. Thanks

flycast5 at yahoo dot com

misha1989 said...

I would love love love to read this book.Please enter me and thank you for making this international!
Misha
mishamary@gmail.com

....Petty Witter said...

What a great way to get a message across. Whoever said an apple a day keeps the doctor away was wrong - laughter (and chocolate chip soup) really is the best medicine. Thanks for the opportunity to enter this giveaway. Good luck all.

tracy.terry1@yahoo.co.uk

Diana said...

Thanks for the giveaway! Would love to have this book.

Linda Kish said...

This sounds like a fun book. I need a little humor right now.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Mozi Esme said...

I love the humorist license idea! I think I'll have to adopt it in some of my writing...

We posted about this giveaway at Winning Readings: http://winningreadings.blogspot.com/2010/07/confessions-of-completely-insane-mother.html

janemaritz at yahoo dot com

bluerose_shelnut said...

This sounds like my kind of book! I would love to read it! (Right now I only have 1, but he's a handful, though). :)
bluerose_shelnut(at)yahoo(dot)com

fredamans said...

Sounds like a fantastic and fun read! Thanks for the chance!

freda.mans[at]sympatico.ca

Annette W. said...

I would love this book. Like all the rest of the moms, I could use a good laugh!

Just think, Kersten's kids will always have a copy of their antics!

Anonymous said...

I would love to read this book. Sounds fantastic! thank you
trishbazin@yahoo.com

buddyt said...

The book sounds like a delightful and fun read.

Please enter me in the giveaway and thanks for opening it up to International entries..

Thank you.

Carol T

buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

Bunny B said...

Wow, this book sounds fun! And I'd love to read more about the choc chip soup! :) Thanks!
bunnybx at gmail . com

apple blossom said...

I'd love to win this book. Thanks
ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Linda Weaver Clarke said...

Congratulations, Linda Kish. You are the winner of Kersten's book. I know you'll enjoy it very much. Thanks everyone for participating in this give away.