So before I headed out for the holidays, I had a girls night with Helen & Lauren. Lauren had asked to borrow some books and I readily supplied her with Alyson Noel's SAVING ZOE and Sarah Dessen's KEEPING THE MOON, plus my own manuscript.
We got to talking about why I write for teenagers and I said it's because almost everything that happens during that time somehow impacts the person you become. Because emotions and wants and needs are magnified during that period. And the smallest occurance can mean the biggest thing.
For example, in eighth grade, I got kicked out of my clique. That might seem trivial, but when your world is only as big as the people around you, and suddenly they ignore you at the lunch table and you have no idea why, it's heartbreaking. My self esteem plummeted. But worse than that, I lost trust. Because if my best friends could hurt me like that, what could my enemies do?
Now, not all teenage incidents breed sadness and insecurity. And I am by no means one of those people who hated high school and is still mad about it. Once I got past the clique dumping, I actually loved high school. Stealing the mic at the prom and belting out Pat Benatar to the screaming crowd felt better than anything I'd ever felt. Getting roses from the hottest guy in my class gave me ultra-confidence during senior year. And crazy late nights with friends gave me experiences and highs that I still sometimes long for now.
It's those moments who make up who I am. Good and bad. Right and wrong. Smart and not-so-smart.
What are some moments that helped mold who you are today?
3 years ago