The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

Blogs, Books, Bacon: MSU alumna writes first book following success of Southern culture-filled blog

Courtesy Photo | Sophie Hudson

MSU alumna writes first book following success of Southern culture-filled blog.

It has been eight years since she started her blog, and Mississippi State University alumna Sophie Hudson has now taken the next logical step: she has published a book.

“A Little Salty to Cut the Sweet” hit shelves earlier this summer. Hudson has had a lot of practice compiling family anecdotes through her “BooMama” blog, and now her readers can find her wit, wisdom and passion for all things Southern in “A Little Salty to Cut the Sweet: Southern Stories of Faith, Family, and Fifteen Pounds of Bacon.”

This book reads like the best fried chicken tastes. There is not too much Southern spice where reading quickly gets old, but there is just enough flavor that you enjoy reading and feel at home. Hudson’s book is a compilation of stories about her family that intertwines humor, sweet and sometimes sad moments, a passion for all things MSU and a clear love for “Southern cookin’.”

Hudson said she has always loved to write, and she consistently journaled growing up. MSU proved to be a great environment to cultivate her skill.

“My English professors were incredible,” Hudson said. “Dr. Mary Ann Dazey took such a personal interest in her students, and her advanced composition class is where I fell in love with writing personal essays.”

Hudson received more encouragement from not just her teachers, but peers as well. Many of her close friends and sorority sisters said they always laughed at Hudson’s stories, and some could even tell she should become a writer.

Hudson’s close friend and fellow MSU alumna Daphne Shannon said Hudson’s writing blog and book came as no surprise to her.

“Sophie is a truly gifted storyteller,” Shannon said. “She is so, so funny, but she can easily get to the heart and soul of a topic at the same time.”

Ginny Elder, MSU alumna and Hudson’s sorority sister, said she can see Hudson’s energy and heart radiate through her book.

“She found humor in just about anything,” Elder said. “I loved seeing her spiritual depth and how she could take even a funny situation and see God in it and bring it all back down to what really matters.”

Hudson said she has had great support from family and friends throughout her life, not just time spent writing her book. She said they have been steady encouragers since her time at MSU.

“My friends at State really inspired me,” Hudson said. “Like I said in my book, they’ve encouraged me to write since I was 19 and prone to things like impromptu perms and crispy bangs. They’re the best.”

Hudson said she always thought she would be a better English teacher than writer, but blogging gave her a chance to practice writing. She said she started blogging on a whim.

“I mainly wanted to do a better job of documenting our family’s life,” Hudson said. “What I realized pretty quickly, though, was I had really missed writing on a regular basis. I’m still blogging almost eight years later, and no one is more surprised by that than I am.”

Hudson said her blogging escalated three years ago when she started to think about publishing a book. Initially, the idea of writing a book proposal sent her into a fiery panic. One afternoon, though, a phrase her grandfather used to use kept coming to mind: “I think I need a little salty to cut the sweet.” Almost instantly, she said the phrase began to develop into a book-sized idea.

“To me, the book felt like a puzzle, and I loved the challenge of trying to figure it out,” she said. “Yes, it was stressful, and yes, there were times when I was convinced that the whole thing was a horrible idea, but by and large, I got the biggest kick out of the process.”

Hudson said her faithful family and friends provided a support system that kept her working even when writing became stressful. Not only is her book filled with stories of her family, but Hudson said her family rallied around and supported the project.

“After I finished the first draft of the book, I gave each family member a copy of the chapters that were about them. I told them they could make any changes they wanted, but they didn’t change a thing,” she said. “That blows my mind a little bit and makes me teary-eyed, to tell you the truth. They were just incredibly gracious and enthusiastic about the whole thing. I’ll never get over that.”

Hudson attributes much of her book to her family. She said her sister helped her remember facts and dates, her grandfather provided inspiration and everyone else provided material for Hudson’s stories that keeps readers laughing as they read.           

Shannon said it is remarkable to see those comprising Hudson’s readership, which is more than just middle-aged moms and Southern women. Hudson’s ability to make people laugh, coupled with her insight and heart, results in widely accessible writing.

Hudson draws her readers in and makes them feel at home. She describes the people who fill the community she came from to show who she is. Her book is a well-told collection of stories that can appeal to any reader. But to a small town Southerner, the book has extra appeal, and it may be the fact that one of the book’s central characters is fried chicken.

Hudson will sign “A Little Salty to Cut the Sweet” at the Book Mart & Cafe in downtown Starkville in December. She still blogs consistently at


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Blogs, Books, Bacon: MSU alumna writes first book following success of Southern culture-filled blog