Cupcake Interview: Wendy McClure

When I found out that Wendy McClure likes cupcakes, I of course had to get more info. Wendy's the author of the fabulous memoir I'm Not The New Me and the forthcoming The Amazing Mackerel Pudding Plan: Classic Diet Recipe Cards from the 1970s.

Name: Wendy McClure

Age: 35

Location: Chicago, IL

Occupation: Writer and editor

URL: and

How often do you eat cupcakes?

Not very often. A few times a year. Maybe once a quarter? Yes, I consume cupcakes quarterly. I am looking forward to my Spring Cupcake.

What's the best thing about eating cupcakes?

They wear little paper pants and you get to take them off. You can say, “Let me help you with that, Mr. Cupcake!” as you peel off the paper. You can say it to yourself quietly. Probably you shouldn’t say it too loud when other people are around.

What's your favorite type of cupcake?

I like very soft cakey cake and big swirly pompadours of frosting. I like the simple combinations of yellow cake and chocolate frosting, or chocolate and white frosting, or chocolate and chocolate frosting. I wouldn’t turn down one of those hot-rodder cupcakes all tripped out with the sprinkles and fancy icing designs, but the ideal cupcake is an uncomplicated cupcake.

How do cupcakes compare/contrast to other baked goods for you?

Cupcakes are definitely tastier than Melba Toast. I don’t know why that is.

Is there any innovation you'd like to see made to the cupcake that would improve it for you?

No, but I have an idea for making cupcakes worse, which would be to make them look like cups of Fluffy Mackerel Pudding.

Do you bake your own cupcakes? Or (even better) have someone who bakes them for you?

I baked my own cupcakes only once, when I was in junior high, for a church youth group function. I baked dozens and dozens and I kept adding water to the frosting so it would spread better. But when I tried to carry the box out to the car, the rows of cupcakes were so heavy and slick that they bent the bottom of the box and created this massive cupcake landslide that made a spectacular mess and ruined everything. I had to bring Oreos instead. On the upside, though, there was plenty of leftover cupcake debris.

What's your first cupcake-related memory?

I don’t know if I have a visual memory; I just remember how I loved the sound of the word “cupcakes.” I liked the consonants, the “k’s,” like taking little bites.

What's the most fun you've ever had with a cupcake?

Last month my boyfriend and I went out to this vegetarian restaurant because we’ve been trying to eat better, and we’ve been shopping for healthy crap for weeks and weeks now, and we just wanted to treat ourselves. There was a bakery case with chocolate vegan cupcakes at the restaurant and first we thought we’d get just one cupcake and split it, but of course we got two. We got two to go, and we went home and ate them while watching an episode of The Muppet Show. This gave us a great feeling of accomplishment somehow.

Do you have anything else to add?

Why have muffins gotten so freakishly big, while cupcakes have stayed cute and little? Is it an evolutionary thing?