Things done already –
1. Coffee and writing talk and life talk with my friend Martha, which was WONDERFUL. We decided that when I move, we will go into our respective Barnes and Nobles (where we always meet) and buy coffee, then talk to each other via cell phone.
2. Post office.
3. Picked up dry cleaning.
4. Grocery store.
5. Went to West Chester to watch Mer and the rest of her drum line (Innovations from Hatboro-Horsham) put on a great show and take first place.
6. Laundry (work in progress)
7. Clean apartment (work in progress)
8. Empty email box (see below)
A nameless reader writes: Hello, let me first begin with I love the book, speak, with a passion, as does my best friend Katy. I are very excited about your upcoming movie, but believe that we have found a better Melinda for you. I hope that you do not take this the wrong way, but in this e-mail is a picture of Katy.
(She included a couple pictures of Katy, who does look like she’d be perfect for the role.) Sorry, Katy and friend, but the movie has already been shot. The role of Melinda went to Kristen Stewart, who did an amazing job.
Joan writes with these questions about PROM for a review in her high school newspaper:
1. Do you honestly believe that your novel is about normal teenagers? Why? Why not?
It doesn’t matter what I think is normal. What matters, for the purpose of this story, is how the main character sees herself, which is “normal.” I do think that her struggles reflect lots of kids who come from similar circumstances. How do I know this? They told me. One of the best parts of my life these days is meeting teens when I visit schools. While I would never, ever take anyone’s personal story and stick it in a book (that would be just plain wrong) I listen carefully when they tell me what they love about their lives and what they struggle with.
2. Why did you set your story in an inner city setting?
I didn’t. The book is set in a fictional suburb just over the city line from Philadelphia (see page 37). I wanted to set it in a working class neighborhood, as opposed to an affluent suburb, because I haven’t seen many books set there.
3. Are metal detectors in a “normal school”?
Again, PROM is told from the first-person point-of-view. So everything that Ashley describes as being “normal” gives you insight into what her world looks and feels like. Plenty of schools in this area have metal detectors.
4. Do normal teachers steal the prom money?
Wow, this whole “normal” thing really got your attention, didn’t it? Obviously, teachers rarely steal money from the prom fund. But it has happened. In my research I found several newspaper articles about the arrests of teachers who had done exactly that.
5. Do you believe your book is realistic and believable?
Mary writes: i just read your book “Catalyst”. I really enjoyed it. it was the type of book that a like to read, books about girls in 1st person form. But i do have a question. i don’t know if i missed something, but it said at first that Mikey was Teri’s younger brother. then once Mikey was electrocuted it said that Mikey was her son. And I’m just really not that sure. could you clear this up for me?
See page 163. We get to learn what our narrator, Kate, learns. When you find out who Mikey’s father is (p. 163), you suddenly look at Teri in a whole new light.
OK, back to getting ready for the trip.