Student pens interactive dating guide
By Abigail Loop
Dallas junior Makenzie Hagestad seems to have made the most of her past relationship troubles.
In her first book, “A Guide to Your Girlfriend: A Personalized Map to Your Boyfriend,” Hagestad includes what she has learned from her experiences in the dating game to help couples everywhere have a better relationship.
Made up of different interactive, fill-in-the-blank sections, the book offers better communication skills to both boyfriends and girlfriends to improve thier understanding of each other. The book came out Nov. 7.
Q: What inspired you to write this book?
A: I originally wrote it last Christmas when I had a boyfriend and I didn’t have a ton of money to spend — we’re college students! So I went to Michael’s, the store, and bought a little scrapbook and handwrote my first one. I sat down and knocked it out in an hour and a half, I don’t know where it came from. I just wrote. My boyfriend at the time was having issues and trouble understanding when I was upset and how to deal with me. So I thought I would write it all down and give it to him as a Christmas gift. I was trying to help him understand what I was thinking. I couldn’t talk to him about it because he would get angry so I had to write him letters at first. Then I thought, why don’t I just write it all down in a book? He could reference it and it would be great. And he actually used it!
Q: How did that project turn into a now published book?
A: My mom, who used to be a magazine publisher, saw it and said, “Makenzie, this is super cute, you should publish it!” So she took it to a couple of friends who then got it to be published. It took from about Febuary to November to complete the whole publishing process and it officialy came out Nov. 7 of this year.
Q: Is writing a book something you’ve always wanted to do?
A: No. I’m actually dyslexic, so English in general is not my thing. Writing papers, I hate it. This book was more of a fun concept that kind of fell into my lap. I had the idea for it but without my mom’s knowledge of the publishing industry and her contacts, I wouldn’t have gotten this published at all. I had not aspired to write a book and never had any kind of idea that I would publish a book. Like I said, I don’t even like writing so this is probably the farthest thing I can think of but it’s definitely interesting and fun for sure.
Q: What was the hardest part of making the book?
A: It was probably the self-analyzing part and thinking what I wanted my boyfriend to know to understand me better but not know everything. You don’t want someone to know every little thing about you. That was the hard part.
Q: Do you have a boyfriend right now and if so, how does he feel about it?
A: I don’t have a boyfriend right now but I have lots of guy friends who are kind of mad at me for making this book. Thier girlfriends want to buy it and read it. It’s going to help them in the long run but they’re not sure about it yet. I’m sure they’ll love it in the end. All the girls I know love it. I think the guys are just unsure about it.
Q: Is there a message you want readers to grasp when they go through the book?
A: As far as a message, it’s supposed to be fun; it’s not supposed to be a way to look down on guys. It’s to help bring us down to the same level in terms of communicating. Girls don’t speak the same as boys and vice versa. That’s why there’s miscommunication. I think as college kids were finally getting into serious relationships where we are noticing that. I do not claim to be any kind of expert, this is just from personal experience. Hopefully it helps avoid little fights about things that don’t even matter and learn communication. It should be fun to fill out!
Q: Is it more of an interactive book than just reading?
A: Yes! It’s mostly fill in the blank. It goes through different sections, like moods, how to read me over texts, and date ideas. It’ll have different scenarios. There are spaces for the girl to fill out what she wants.
Q: Do you have any current projects you’re working on?
A: My mom and I already have like 12 ideas for other books. We’re thinking maybe like “Guide to Your Fiancé”, “Guide to Your Wife”, or possibly “Guide to Your Roommate.” I’ve gotten feedback from a lot of girls saying they would love to have that for their roommate. Those are the main ones that stick out right now but we have tons of ideas. They’re just communication books.
Q: Do you see writing as a career in the future?
A: I don’t know about writing, but I want to maybe eventually manage the company, Kenzington LLC, which I created. It’s a company to just run my book sales through and my mom and I are partners. I want to help create more books and work in managing the company.