Monday, December 16, 2019

Dear A-Decade-Ago Me...

Dear A-Decade-Ago Me,

There's good stuff coming.

You'll be a bookseller for a few years, and get more out of it than you expect. You'll also get a few let's-do-better blog posts out of it, but those will help you zero in on your own beliefs. (And you'll see more attitudes in line with some of them--partly because the discussions will get more visible, and partly just because you'll learn where to look.) When you move from bookselling to working with reviews (yes, Past Me, that will happen), your conversations about what to shelve where will come up more often than you think.

There's lots of writing and lots of revising in your future, 2010 Me. Yes, you'll find a great agent.  You'll also work with a variety of thoughtful critique partners, and by the end of the decade, you'll be in a group cohesive enough to collapse into in-joke giggles at some point in most meetings.

You'll serve on an award committee. As much as you'll learn from the other members, committee work will also, paradoxically, teach you a lot about your independent thoughts on what makes good books and what makes good representation.

Some things will surprise you. Like that Suzanne Collins/Jeff Kinney collaboration, and when Make Way for Ducklings gets turned into a trilogy.

Some things really won't surprise you. You'll love a lot of booksYou'll go to lots of great book events, and you'll celebrate the Newberys with blueberries every year, just because it rhymes. You'll continue to be an Anne-girl fangirl, which will feed into your interest in adaptations. Harry Potter won't have faded from your life when the decade ends (pro-tip: if you're going to read it aloud over Skype, do so with an audience tolerant of terrible voices. That audience is your sister). You probably also won't be surprised to learn that the surprises mentioned above are fake, because what's the point of a blog without April Fool posts? (There really is a Hunger Games prequel on the way in the next decade, though. If we're defining decades as beginning with the zero-year, which we clearly are in this post.)

There's not-great stuff coming, too, in your small world and in the larger one. That's how decades work. Silliness is usually at least part of the answer. For example, selling song parodies in exchange for charitable contributions.

Oh, and you'll start a blog a few months into the decade. Thanks for that.

You, a Decade Later