Monday, October 29, 2012

Dear Teen Me, A Book That MUST Be Read! Enter To WIN Your Copy Here.

Dear Teen Me includes advice from over 70 YA authors (including Lauren Oliver, Ellen Hopkins, and Nancy Holder, to name a few) to their teenage selves. The letters cover a wide range of topics, including physical abuse, body issues, bullying, friendship, love, and enough insecurities to fill an auditorium. So pick a page, and find out which of your favorite authors had a really bad first kiss? Who found true love at 18? Who wishes he’d had more fun in high school instead of studying so hard? Some authors write diary entries, some write letters, and a few graphic novelists turn their stories into visual art. And whether you hang out with the theater kids, the band geeks, the bad boys, the loners, the class presidents, the delinquents, the jocks, or the nerds, you’ll find friends--and a lot of familiar faces--in the course of Dear Teen Me.

Everyone needs to read this book! Buy it for the teen in your life, even if you’re not a teen I advise on buying this book for yourself and sharing it with friends. This will be the book that I will always recommend to teens, parents and teachers. When I read about the concept I thought it was interesting but when I received my advance copy I could not put it down. I forgot what it was like to be a teen and all the memories came flooding back. All the issues that my younger mind went through but no answers. I wish I had this collection of letters back then. Plus as an adult reading Dear Teen Me I was able to see how much I have grown as a person and realize that I am my own encourager through life. My biggest wish is that I could write and deliver a letter to my teen self and tell myself that things will be okay. My problems weren’t as big as many but I had my low points that every teen has. That moment of doubt that adults say will get better, but what you long for is proof.

There are some heavy issues in Dear Teen Me such as eating disorders, dysfunctional families, bullying and the idea that you are all alone. There are also moments of laughter and friendship and tons of encouragement. I will take the lessons from this book and use it in my future parenting. I will keep it and remember how it was to be a teen with questions and doubt and will remember how to talk with my own kids and tell them with proof that I know what they are going through. If any parents are out there lost about what their teen is going through I am personally telling you to stop, and reminding you that you already know. Check this book out and remember. Share it with them and their teachers so that it may be included in libraries and help others.

My first challenge is to do the same as the many talented YA authors did in Dear Teen Me. I will take the first step and write a letter to my teen self. I think this is something that all adults need to do. You may think it’s silly but you realize how far you have come in life and then something just clicks. My letter is not that juicy but all the same it’s part of who I was and I became.

Dear Teen Me,

I think back on our teen years as a blur. You don’t really remember too much about high school or any specific moments that are worth mentioning. Sorry but it’s true. It may be because of the choice you made for yourself to not drink, smoke or do any drugs of any kind. It’s not because of fear or wanting to be superior to others. You and I both know why you made this choice and the darkness behind it. It’s because of trust. How you do not trust yourself if you were ever to actually try a drink while with friends. If while intoxicated you accidentally let the reason slip and what people will think. I will let you know that we maintain this choice to this day and have no regrets about it. You don’t miss out on much because of it. The darkness still lingers behind it but it absolutely gets better than now because of the friends you have.

Right now you have just broken up with a terrible boyfriend and are tired of wondering if boys actually like you. After a small string of guys who say they are interested in you and even go out with you, nothing ever happens. You start to wonder if you are even attractive and at all interesting. Please stop wasting time on this issue because when you are older you will be slapping yourself of how great you looked and all the fabulous outfits you could have worn instead of hiding under those baggy Mossimo sweatshirts. Remember to teach this lesson to your future daughter.

You will soon struggle with friendship. You have a couple of great friendships but they eventually turn sour because of trust and loyalty issues. You are going to be without a group of girlfriends for a while because you will make the hard decision to cut all ties from them. You’ll feel empty for a while during your college years and will go through a rocky academic period. But never fear; you do manage to take one fantastic thing away from high school.

A couple of months from now you will notice a guy smiling at you. You even stop and wonder if he’s looking at someone behind you, he isn’t. You realize that he has had a class across the hall from yours your entire senior year. He is even taking a class with your sister and is one of your close friends best friend. He will invite you to a party he is throwing and because you finally make the decision to throw more caution to the wind you go and even get into trouble because you stay out until 2am talking with him. He will call you and invite you to prom and when he tells you he loves you shortly after graduating you are not scared because you love him too.

You realize later that you did have a true best friend in high school; he just arrived late. He is the one that you can always count on and the one that will see you at your worst. You look to this person and always wish that you had met him earlier. One day he will arrive at your doorstep on your 21st birthday after you have been crying your eyes out because of how far in debt you are because of your car and college. Your mom tells him that you need cheering up and he takes you to see a movie. Instead of a movie he will propose to you with a ring he won from a gumball machine. You say yes then he gives you the actual ring that he’s been saving months for.

This man will make you laugh to the point of tears and will be an incredible father. He will hold your hand during your endless stays at the hospital when you find out that you have a unique condition that will unfortunately be very painful but you get through it. You will be left with horrible scaring that you can hide but he says you’re still beautiful. Don’t waste your money on the Maderma because you never use it. 

Your life will only get better after this. You will have a son and shortly after tell your husband about the stories that have always cluttered your mind. He pushes you to start writing and is your biggest supporter.

You also find that group of girlfriends that you wish you had in high school. One always seems to make you feel stronger and isn’t afraid to tell you when you’re wrong, one let’s you cry on her shoulder and hugs you often, and the other helps feed your creative soul and allows you to be silly. Because of where your line of work takes you, you end up making amazing friends that you can be yourself around.

The point of this letter is to tell you that high school is sometimes this big wonderful thing but not for you. Your big wonderful thing is just about to happen. You are about to discover who you want to be and the people that you want to include on that journey. When you feel that you absolutely have it all, your husband tells you about a dream he had and continues to have. You laugh it off and convince yourself it’s unthinkable because things like that don’t happen to people like you. But they so will. So pay close attention to the guy who smiles at you, he will change your life.  


** The prize is an autographed copy of Dear Teen Me—signed by 4-5 contributors, plus postcards, bookmarks.

I will be verifying comment entries to the giveaway. No cheater's please. Please leave a comment by clicking the little pencil below the comment section. That easy people. 

Winner's name will posted here at the end of the contest date. Winner will be required to email me within 24 hours at and I will make sure you receive your fabulous prize. 

Enter the Rafflecopter form below and Good Luck!
As of 11/7/12 the winner of this giveaway did not contact me within the 24 hour time period. So I had to pick another winner. Congrats to Nikki C. you are the official winner of this giveaway.

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  1. I really like this idea. So many things happen in your teenage years that are absolutely baffling and upsetting-- it seems like your world is crashing down around you... but if I were to write to my teenage self... I'd tell myself to hold on, there's a wonderful community that I'll be a part of, there'll be a wonderful woman there for me. (I'd also reassure myself that no, it's not just a phase.) I think every teen needs to be reassured that everything will be okay, they just have to keep pushing forward.
    (Pardon my never used teenaged blogging account.)

  2. I would tell my teen self that it is okay to be different. In fact, it's wonderful! Trying to assimilate is exhausting, breaks down the self-esteem and is pointless. I have been watching a lot of "RuPaul's Drag Race" so my inner drag queen is coming out here, but my advice would be, "You are fierce, sister. Own it"


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