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Booking Success

Distinguished Alumna

Wall native and Angelo State graduate Jenny Lawson has only gotten busier since the publication of her irreverent memoir, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened, which debuted at No. 1 on the New York Times bestseller list in 2012.

  • Jenny Lawson
    Jenny Lawson

She recently sold the rights to her follow-up book, Furiously Happy, a humorous look at living with mental illness. The manuscript still needs to go through editing before it will be prepared for publication, and that is not all she has going on.

Lawson, who earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1997, continues to maintain her blog, thebloggess.com, which led directly to her first publishing contract and still receives up to 3 million monthly views. She has also been working with television network ABC to put into development a half-hour project based on her first book.

“I’m not sure if it’ll get picked up for a pilot,” Lawson said, “but it’s been interesting seeing them try to change my life story into a script.”

Recognizing Lawson’s outstanding accomplishments, the ASU Alumni Association has named her its 2014 Distinguished Alumna.

Lawson credits ASU with helping her develop as a writer.

“ASU was where I first learned how much I hate AP Style,” she said. “This sounds ridiculous, but it was incredibly helpful to learn the correct way of writing so that when I bent the rules or made new ones, I knew I was doing it on purpose rather than out of ignorance.”

One of the most important aspects of Lawson’s writing is maintaining her voice and her unique perspective.

“Writers write always, even if the audience isn’t there,” she said. “If I’m not blogging, I’m writing a book or essays or weird thoughts on napkins. Writing is my release valve.”

  • Jayna Phinney

    Jayna Phinney

    Jayna Phinney is a web information specialist at Angelo State University.
    E-mail Jayna at jayna.phinney@angelo.edu.