As is true for most aspiring writers, I was first a reader. I think I learned to read at like 4 and completely devoured The Babysitter’s Club series, and then the Hardy Boys, there were some kids in a boxcar that were really entertaining. And then Harry Potter happened and I literally wrote myself a Hogwarts acceptance letter and left it in my parents room. Needless to say, I was a weird child. In any event, through my preteen years, young adult novels were my jam. I learned like all of my important life lessons via teen novels. I mean, really, Are You There God, It’s Me Margaret taught me everything I needed to know about dating and love and relationships and the importance of getting boobs.
Here are the top 10 life lessons we’ve gathered from the best young adult novels. If you haven’t read any of these yet, you should. With your big grown up college brain, you’d get through them in like a week. Read more on College Candy…
We haven’t always gotten along. There have been some wicked fights over the years, starting in the sixth grade when I didn’t want to wear my ripe-for-teasing plaid shorts to school, or in ninth grade when you insisted a C minus in trig warranted summer school (it didn’t), or that visit during college when I threatened to leave and never come home again (though I don’t even remember what we were fighting about).
But this Mother’s Day, I wanted to tell you those three little words moms everywhere love to hear.
You were right. Keep reading »
I love Oprah. I’ve been watching her since I was a pimply teenager looking for diet tips and ways to attract a boyfriend. My dream was to become a journalist and interview newsmakers and celebrities just like she does. I wound up a TV news producer and writer and — although I never got my own show or theme song — I thank Oprah for motivating me.
O and I have been through a lot together. Big hair, shoulder pads, and several body types. We’ve also taken a spiritual journey as we grew up and began to recognize the world outside ourselves. The cynical will snicker, but I believe she encouraged me to be a better person. Her shows prompted me to read great books, be more generous with time and money, and better understand my fellow man.
When I heard it was her last season, I wanted to make the pilgrimage to my hometown of Chicago to see her in person. I lobbied everyone I knew who might have a connection until I scored tickets. I booked my flight and shared my excitement with friends. Keep reading »
I probably don’t need to convince you that Tina Fey is amazing. But lately, with the pieces she has been writing for The New Yorker, I am falling in love all over again with the way she mixes humor, neuroticism and wisdom all into the same breath. This week, Tina wrote a piece called “Lessons From Late Night,” in which she recounts some of the teachings she absorbed from legendary “SNL” executive producer Lorne Michaels. Tina writes, “During my nine years at ‘Saturday Night Live,’ my relationship with Lorne transitioned from Terrified Pupil and Reluctant Teacher, to Small-Town Girl and Streetwise Madam Showing Her the Ropes, to Annie and Daddy Warbucks (touring company).” Some of the things Tina says she learned: don’t hire anyone you wouldn’t want to run into in the hallway at three in the morning. And never tell a crazy person they are crazy. True dat. Keep reading »
Breakups suck. But after a little time has passed, you may find yourself feeling relieved, reflective and actually — dare we say — thankful that you and your former dude are no longer together. Breakups and how they’re done can teach us lots of valuable lessons about who we are and what we want. They can also be maddening, depressing and straight up rude. Still, all in all, practically every breakup has made me thankful, too–either that I’m no longer with that person or that I’ve learned something valuable about them. After the jump, some of the breakups I’m most thankful for.
And tell us yours in the comments! Keep reading »
Yesterday was my 34th birthday and after, like, my second or third glass of celebratory wine, I started thinking about how I’ve now spent the last 17 birthdays away from my parents. Half my life! If I didn’t feel like an adult before, that little realization certainly did it for me. And then I started thinking about what I was like 17 years ago and what 17-year-old me would think about 34-year-old me. (And then I had another glass of wine.) And then I woke up this morning and decided I’d write that younger me a letter. I wrote 16-year-old me a letter last year, but that was back when I was 32 (so much younger then!) and, well, now I’ve got more to say. So, after the jump, read my letter and then feel free to leave a note of your own in the comments. Keep reading »
A couple of months ago, I wrote a list of 21 things I wish I’d known at 21, which over a 100 of you thought enough about to comment on. The thing is, I was pretty naive and there were a lot more than 21 things I didn’t know at that age. So, without further ado, check out 21 more things I wish I’d known at 21, after the jump. Keep reading »
My father doesn’t like trying anything new. Paying bills for instance. He still writes checks and sends them snail mail. “You can pay everything online now,” I’ve told him. “It’s faster and you don’t have to use stamps.”
He refuses, though he’s fairly internet-savvy, because he’s paid bills this way for the past 30 years, dammit, and that’s the way he’s going to keep paying them. He can get impatient. His stories can go on forever. He can be antisocial and crabby.
I want to be just like him when I grow up. Keep reading »
MSN recently posted a listicle entitled “31 Things I Wish I’d Known About Dating When I was 21,” which made me think of everything I, too, wish I’d known (about dating and everything else) when I was 21. Instead, I had to learn things the hard way. Save yourself the trouble and just read my list. After the jump, 21 things I wish I’d known when I was 21. Keep reading »
My mom’s a middle school English teacher and over the past, oh, 25 years or so, she has taught thousands of kids. Her reputation precedes her too. She’s known for being tough and strict — maybe even a little demanding — but serious students know she’s the best teacher for the job. She loves what she does, she’s passionate about the subject, and she gets results. Sometimes, years after leaving her classroom, students will send my mom a “thank you” and tell her they were far more prepared for high school and college than their classmates who didn’t have my mom as a teacher. And I know what they mean. My mom didn’t just help prepare me for school; she prepared me for life — and in a big way. After the jump, the ten best things my mom, the teacher, taught me. Keep reading »