Kelly Oxford: From Twitter sensation to best-selling author

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First aired on Q (04/10/13)

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Tweeting hilarious one-liners turned Kelly Oxford from a stay-at-home mom in Calgary into a successful Hollywood screenwriter and bestselling author. Over the past few years, Oxford's 140-character witticisms have won her wide-ranging popularity, and celebrity fans including Jimmy Kimmel, Diablo Cody, and the late Roger Ebert. Oxford spoke with Jian Ghomeshi recently about her new book, Everything Is Perfect When You're a Liar, which is a collection of short personal essays about embarrassing moments, crazy misadventures and road trips, and moments from her life with a husband and three children.

Oxford has been writing since she was a kid, and has maintained a blog since the early days of the internet. But it wasn't until Twitter that she started to get any kind of recognition. "I knew how to use [Twitter] from the beginning, that it would just have to be short, quick observational things...I knew what I would want to share," she said.

Her instincts proved correct, and soon she had many celebrity followers. "It was very flattering that entertainers were being entertained by me," she said. She was invited down to an event in Los Angeles called "Night of 140 Tweets," where Oxford was the only non-celebrity attendee. "That was big, but because I was still just doing what I'd always done and going back to my house and I was a mom with three wasn't really crazy for me." A phone call from Jessica Alba, for example, was just a chat between two moms.

Oxford writes about her pre-motherhood exploits in the book in a way that makes her sound like a particularly free spirit -- in one essay she describes her failed attempt to track down Leonardo DiCaprio at the age of 17. So what made her settle down and have children at a relatively young age? "[Her husband] James and I had been together for a couple of years and I just thought 'I kind of want kids, kids are always staring at us' and we both really liked kids," she said. "Kids are just funny, and I really like funny...they have no filter on anything and I find that so delicious."

And do her kids mind being mined for Oxford's memoirs and Twitter feed? "I'm very conscientious of what I've always put out about my family," she said. "I've really honed in on writing about my family from a sitcom perspective."

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