Why I Wrote a Pageant Memoir

Why I wrote a pageant memoir

"I think you should write about how you got started in pageants."

That's how the book "From Metal to Rhinestones: A Quest for the Crown" began.

My husband loves bragging that I am a former beauty queen. Despite the fact that I am in the throws of motherhood and would often be kidnapped by the fashion police for sacrificing style to be a mother, he loves that I have a few crowns to back up my claim. After years of preserving the history of my children and my ancestors, he insisted I record my life story. The memoir requested was how I began to be a beauty queen.

Several years ago, the movie Miss Congeniality with Sandra Bullock was a huge hit because:

  1. It's Sandra Bullock 
  2. It was primarily a makeover story, and women generally love makeovers. 
I roared with laughter throughout the movie because I knew first hand the beauty transformation hacks the female FBI agent endured. I shouted, "Oh, that would never happen at Miss Texas Teen USA" when plot points diverged from what would be allowable at the pageant competitions I attended. I also knew the deeper meaning behind, "It's not a beauty pageant, it's a scholarship program."

Pageant banner
Photo courtesy Devon Noel Lee. 

My turn for the judges days are long past, but recently my children began asking me about my experiences. They've seen a few photos and crowns from my glory days. They also chuckled over the photos from when I first embarked on my beauty queen quest.  Given all these reasons, my husband requested I start my memoir writing at the story they all want most.

Hopefully, my children will better understand who I was and pair that with who I have become. Perhaps my tale will explain why I do a few things that seem a bit odd. A friend, who has only known me as an adult, found paragraphs in the book that did just that!

As my kids reach their teenage years and will soon leave the proverbial nest, I want them to know that chasing a dream isn't foolish. Failure, poor decisions, and cluelessness fill the quest, but the payoff is worth the risk.

From Metal to Rhinestones: A Quest for the Crown color edition
Autographed full color images
available through familyhistoryfanatics.com/books

As I began pour out my memories, a story unfolded. Questions needed answered. A universal tale developed that many women and children can relate to regardless of their familiarity with pageantry.
"When you wear holey jeans, rock concert T-shirts, and frizzy headbanger hair, why would you trade it all in for sequins, rhinestones, and Cinderella high heels? One day a woman planted a transforming fantasy in my heavy-metal-infused brain and mesmerized me with visions of tiaras and roses. When I asked my father if I could participate in my first pageant, he shouted, "You want to do what?"
I then wondered, "Was this dream of beauty pageant glory too far-fetched for a dress-hating tomboy? Was this heavy metal duckling too ugly to ever achieve the crown?"

Kindle and traditional paperback
available through Amazon.com

I wrote the book because my husband requested it. As I wrote it, I wanted a book that my children could appreciate. Now, I share this book with anyone who likes a story of transformation. From Metal to Rhinestones: A Quest for the Crown goes on sale August 26, 2016.


  1. I love that your husband requested you write this memoir. By the way, I popped over to your site and didn't see the book. Not sure what's wrong!

    1. Ha, ha! Dana. Yep, he did request the memoir. As for the website... it's in the process of being redesigned. It will be fixed as soon as the ducks line up.

  2. Your husband is right. Those of us who "do genealogy" and write family history are always being reminded to write OUR story because one day someone will be interested in what their great-great grandmother was like.

    1. Well said Wendy. I'm excited to say that at least I wrote one of my stories for my posterity.


Powered by Blogger.