Dear “Dear Teen Me,”

I just wanted to let you know that I’ve become a big fan of your letters from authors to their teenage selves, and to thank you for all of the novels you’ve got me adding to my to-read pile as a result.

Seriously. Does a letter that begins like this —

Dear Teenage Me:

The precise day in time I’m picking to send this to you is that week when the guy at work was trying to kill you.

— make me want to read Adam Selzer’s books? Yes. Yes it does.

Same goes for Mike Jung‘s Geeks, Girls, and Secret Identities, which I’d want to read — if it was published yet — based solely on these words from Mike to his younger self:

Here’s the first, most important thing – you live to be my age. Hopefully there are a lot more years ahead, but the immediate point is you live past 15, which you won’t if you do what you’re considering. I know ending it all seems like a viable option. I KNOW.

And for Varian Johnson‘s Saving Maddie — a great guy book with a girl cover — which, OK, I’ve already read and loved, but which I would have sought out anyway after reading this:

[Y]ou’ll learn how to talk to girls, and you’ll go out on dates, and you’ll even get over your fear of you know what happening when you slow dance. You’ll never be an athlete, but that’s okay, because you’re in the band.

Ditto for Tom Angleberger. (“Do me a favor … don’t shout ‘Nice move, Brian!’ really really loud.”)

And Gene Brenek. (“At what age do I even address this to? Let’s face it, either end of the teen spectrum is going to pack a wallop–but for entirely different reasons.”)

And Charles Benoit. (“[D]espite what Mrs. Christensen says, after high school you’ll never have to solve for X again.”)

And Steve Vera. (“Dear Numbnuts…”)

You get the idea.

You’ve got me eager to read more from these guys, and to read more, period. I thank you for that.


A Contemporary Fan

[Cross-posted at Guys Lit Wire.]