The One to My First Book Baby

From Barrett computer lab bookbaby1

to Barnes & Noble bookbaby2

You've been one of the most special things about my life so far, and I'm so grateful for the opportunities you've given me, as well as the people you've allowed me to meet and work with. You are the one I wrote from my heart, with the ones I care about most in mind. You are the one I pulled all-nighters for, the one I used to day dream in class about, and the one I refused to give up on (even when you made me want to pull my hair out during each round of revisions).

I worry all the time about things I could have and should have done for you, and about what others will think of you. In the end, though, I think you can stand alone without any help from me. I may have made mistakes in creating you, I may not have been the perfect author parent, but, to me, you are perfect.

When I think of you, I'll always remember working at my Swem desk, writing in the sunlight. I'll remember sitting very still and listening to the song "Viola's Audition," and imagining some poor girl running for her life down a mountainside, gaining speed and confidence with every step.

I'll remember writing you in Cambridge, England, and the weird look the Porters always gave me when I stayed an hour too long in the computer lab.

I'll remember how I felt when I signed with my agent, when I sold you, when I saw your cover the first time--but I'll also remember how I felt when I got all of your editorial letters, and how it felt to beat the cleaning ladies to Swem and the computer lab at 6 AM so I could work on you before class.

And I'll remember working on you during class.

I'm proud of you, book baby. I hope you find thousands of nice homes with people who love adventures, and who believe that happy endings are possible even in the darkest of days.

But, most of all, I wish you a long, happy life.