The letter below is part of an ongoing series featuring letters from authors to their teen selves. If you're a published author who'd like to participate in this series, we'd love to have you. Just click here and let us know you're interested. Today's guest is James Sie, author of All Kinds Of Other, out this Tuesday.
Hey you! (Or should I say hey, me?):
What’s going on here...It appears that there’s a balloon hat on your head and you’re wearing that white vest you think makes you look cool...oh, it’s your birthday! I remember! You’re about to embark on that epic game of D&D with your friends! Yes, you always knew how to party hard. Can I steal you away for a moment? Just let your elf-mage sleep a few turns; don’t worry, there’s no gelatinous cube oozing nearby.
This is actually the perfect time to talk. You’ve got a couple more years of high school left, and I think I might be able to do you a solid here and offer some advice on how to spend these last years before college. I’m not talking about your job, or academics; I know you’ve got that covered. It’s about an area of your life you’re deliberately avoiding even thinking about... you know what I’m talking about, right? Or maybe you don’t—you’ve gotten really good at keeping it hidden, even from yourself. I already see you sliding your eyes away, changing the subject, offering me some Cheetos to divert attention away from yourself. Stop it. We’re going to have this discussion.
James as a teenager