One of the show’s early driving forces is that infamous “carefrontation” letter, written by Lacey. It completely alters Jenna’s opinion of herself and perhaps her entire high school experience to date. What was Lacey’s intention there?
It was Lacey’s intention that the letter alter Jenna’s opinion of herself and her high school experience, but in a positive way. Lacey thought that she was helping Jenna by suggesting that she take those actions. She had no idea that it would backfire the way it did. Lacey thought that she would help Jenna to be more outgoing, confident, and up level her whole high school experience. Lacey always has the best of intentions, but her execution of things is often flawed. I like to say that she has a very inadequate skill set; however, that skill set has definitely improved over the years.
How do you think you would’ve reacted if you were in Jenna’s shoes?
I know how I would have reacted, because I have been in that situation with my own mother. Most daughters have! That’s why the story is so relatable. Every mother has done something that they thought would help their daughter, but in the end, it hurt them. As a kid, you feel like something must be really broken about you if your own mother doesn’t love and accept you for who you are. As a mother, you think you are helping.
Jenna and her friends really have it rough! Was your high school experience ever as dramatic and intense as what these teens have been experiencing?
I didn’t go to a regular high school. I was working; therefore, I was tutored on each set. I also finished high school in two years. There’s very little drama when it’s just you, your school books, and a teacher.
Lucky you! How do you think you would’ve fared in the high school environment created by AWKWARD?
Let’s just say I probably would have spent a lot of time in Valerie’s office. Of course, I would’ve been in love with Matty, too. Who isn’t?
Being a small-town girl, what prompted your big Hollywood dreams?
My parents always said that I came into this world already knowing what I wanted to do with my life. I started performing at 3 years old. I think it was just part of my life-curriculum to be creative and pursue my dreams in this industry. There were definitely certain movies and performances that inspired me. Funny Girl is one of my favorite movies of all time, and Barbara Streisand’s performance is perfect. I have always been obsessed with movies and music. As a kid, I would write out all of the dialogue of a movie and force my sister to act out every scene with me. I was a real nuisance.