Friday, November 5, 2010

SKINNY DIPPING Rocks. The Book, That Is.

I’ve never been skinny dipping. 

I think. 

Okay, maybe I have... I’m getting old (28! Egads), and my memory’s not what it used to be. Yeah, that's it.

In any event, skinny dipping is one of those things that if you even so much as mention it, I start giggling. And I get excited. And I probably blush a little.

Don’t be modest – I know you all feel the same way.

I do remember being on a camping trip in 8th grade with a bunch of girls, and we were out running around the lake at 1:00 a.m. and came across a couple skinny dipping. Of course we were all boy crazy at the time, so we gushed about what it might be like to do that one day – when we were older.

Some of the girls wanted to skinny dip, but of course we didn’t. Too shy, too young. But looking back now I think, “Why didn’t we do that? It would’ve been fun. Just a bunch of girls acting silly.” 

If I talked to my 14-year-old self now, 14-year-old me would say, “You are crazy, Miranda! I couldn’t do that.”

How often do we look back on our lives and think, “What if?”

So this past week, I got my first book deal with Sourcebooks! Yay! And I’d been meaning to read THE SUMMER OF SKINNY DIPPING (it’s a Sourcebooks 2010 release) for a while anyway, so I want to talk about that today. It's a book that takes place in The Hamptons during a life-changing summer. I don't want to say too much about the plot, but the book has a very Sarah Dessen-ish feel to it, and great subtle character development that really made me think. Melikes thinking!

I really loved this book, and I’m not just saying that – I loved the “everyday” conflicts that the main character, Mia, faces.

She’s a real girl. An honest girl with a slight attitude, who tells us all her fears and wants. Mia has a unique narrative voice. “They were dressed like they were about to hit an underground, rock-star-owned club with a dress code involving next-to-nothing tops, black leather pants, and spiky heels no thicker than car radio antennas and almost as long. And there I stood: the Ultimate Virgin in my white party dress, surrounded by sirens. Cue the laugh track.”

I loved that Mia had the ability to look at all sides of an issue on the spot. She saw most angles right off the bat. Her struggle was that she didn’t know which angle was right for the world, right for her life.

The great “life lesson” I took from this book – and I’d never really thought of this before – is that there has to be a balance between living for the future versus living in the now.

I always hear: Live for today. But is that always the healthiest thing for a person? 

So tell me –

How often do you look back on things and say, “I should’ve done that”?

How often do you face problems and think, “There’s nothing I can do” only to find out later, you had lots of power?

And the most important question of all – have y’all ever been skinny dipping?  


K said...

First: CONGRATS on the book deal. WOO HOO.

Second: I have been skinny dipping more times then I can remember. And with mixed company (gasp, I know). It was a thing we did in high school and it was so fun. If I had a pool I would be naked in it right now. Well, if it was heated.

E. Kristin Anderson said...

Wooooooo I am so excited about your deal! Sourcebooks is such an awesome house, too!

I also haven't been skinny dipping. I am the same age, though, know...memory and all that.

I really must pick up this book. It sounds fab!

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