My friends and family are my support system. They tell me what I need to hear, not what I want to hear and they are there for me in the good and bad times. Without them I have no idea where I would be and I know that their love for me is what's keeping my head above the water.
I'm the perfect amount of guarded. I don't reveal too much, and I never reveal who the songs are about. They are real life. People get that. I date a lot of musicians and they do the same thing. People that work with me - who I write about too - they get it. It's my creative outlet, my therapy.
I love Twitter! At first I made fun of it, because it is very narcissistic, and there's already so much narcissism flowing in this industry, I was like, 'Really, one more?' So I was against it at first. But I really love the idea of the direct connection - there's no middle man muddling it up.
There is no greater feeling than hanging out with my dogs, or just walking around the land with our horses. My rescue ranch is is where I feel the most at peace and where I'm reminded of the simple things in life and let the chaos of my crazy work life fade away.
I put on the Hank Williams and the Patsy Cline and the Rosemary Clooney on vinyl - I'm not trying to be some cool indie-rock person, I just love the way it sounds - and throw on a T-shirt and jeans. In Texas, we practically come out of the womb in jeans.
I am just like my mother. She raised me to love and take care of animals, especially the ones that need it the most and so I started Eddie's Rescue Ranch. We take in animals that need extra care and attention and the animals that get left behind.
I would not be a good mother. I mean, I love being an aunt to my niece and nephew. And I used to want to, like, adopt 10 kids - because I had friends who were adopted, and I thought that was the coolest thing, to be chosen. But again, my job is too selfish.
I'm cute - and God I hate that. Because that's not cool. I'm like your niece, and nobody wants to date their niece. It's the chubby cheeks. The whole reason people voted for me on American Idol is because I'm an everyday, normal girl.
The hardest thing about being in this business is just being able to be yourself. People act like there's this one set of rules to follow to be a pop star and I think, 'Well, you say I'm a pop star, so maybe that's not true.'
When I'm picking songs for an album I always want a song that I can relate to and that I have experienced. There's nothing worse than watching an artist try and sell a song that isn't believable coming from them.
When I went to Los Angeles right after high school, I got some acting jobs, and I never, ever wanted to be an actress! Public speaking and acting make me want to vomit. But I have never been nervous singing. When it comes to public speaking, I stumble on my words, sweat, and pull at my clothes.
I've got a song on One Direction's album called 'Tell Me A Lie'. It's a really cute song - I love it. I loved that they liked it. They sound really great on it. I already have it - I'm so VIP with my copy on my computer! It does sound really good.
I think one thing you could probably say for all my albums is that they're all pretty eclectic pop. There's always a little bit of urban influence, some dance, a little bit of country, singer-songwriter, pop-rock. I like everything! On every album you can find that.
I never said I was a 'good girl.' I'm not a bad girl. I'm just normal, and that's what I'm going to be. There's no bad girl with whips and chains that's going to come out. I think people like me because I was myself.
I'm from a small town so, like, everyone's married with children or about to have children. So it's a little hard when you go home and people are like - and that's why people think I'm gay - because they're like 'Why aren't you married?' And I'm like, 'it doesn't happen for everyone right off the bat.'
I'm not super conservative, and I have no problem with people being risque or owning your sexuality or even putting it out there. I have a problem when it's all you are because you're not being fair to yourself; you have more depth than this.
My whole point is like, well, if I'm the pop star, then it should be whatever I am. There's, you know, room for Katy Perrys and Adeles and Rihannas and Lady Gagas and Ke$has and me and Pinks. I think what's great about all of us is that we represent something different.
I live on a ranch in Texas and do my own thing. And I don't care what anyone has to say about it. My joke is that the only people I'm trying to please are myself and my fans, because they're the ones buying my records. And I have the best, most loyal fan base ever.
I'm not that girl who's really concerned with it. I've dated a bit and it's just draining to me. If it's not going to happen natural, obviously it's going to be someone in the industry because that's the only time people ever really see me.
I'm proud of everything I achieved with 'Idol,' and away from 'Idol' also. It's just such a different show now to what it was when I was on it. I didn't even know it was a TV show until the third audition.
My kids are obviously growing up very privileged, but I want them to have a servant's heart. We do community service as a family, and I also call them out on things like getting impatient when they stand in line - because they hardly ever have to. But that's just the reality of what they were born into.
Seems like just yesterday, you were a part of me. I used to stand so tall, I used to be so strong; your arms around me tight, everything felt so right - unbreakable, like nothing could go wrong. Now I can't breathe. No, I can't sleep; I'm barely hanging on. Here I am, once again, I'm torn into pieces. Can't deny it, can't pretend, just thought you were the one. Broken up, deep inside, but you won't get to see the tears I cry.
The question I love to get asked is: 'What's the hardest part of your job?' And literally, the answer is probably real sad, but it's to just to be me. Like, it's really hard, because I think people, you know, have a set idea of what a pop star should be.