Dear Teen Me from author Juliana Stone (BOYS LIKE YOU)

Teen Julie!

Teen Juliana!

Dear Teen Me:

Hey, you…yeah you with the big hair, the neon green T-shirt and the harem pants that won’t quit. Listen up ‘cause I got a few things to share. First off, let me tell you that THINGS WORK OUT. So, there’s that but still….

You know the guy you’ve been in love with since sixth grade? Get over it. He was just a fantasy and once you do finally date, the result is such a letdown. Don’t waste anymore time on a guy who flirts outrageously,(listen to this part because it’s important) ESPECIALLY A GUY WHO HAS A GIRLFRIEND. Bad precedent my friend. BAD.

Also, the guy you dated for the only reason being that he looked like Jim Morrison? Not cool. He gave you a hell of a lot more than GIRLFRIEND GUY and you kinda broke his heart.

And that so called friend who used you? The one who stole your clothes and gave away all of your stuff? Your yearbooks and pictures and the things that mattered? The one you thought you wanted to be? The one you thought had the perfect hair and the whitest, straightest teeth? Yeah, well, she was screwed up then and as an adult she hasn’t improved.

Be strong. Don’t be ashamed that you decided to wait for sex. Don’t be embarrassed that your love of romance novels made you think that there was a knight in shining armor out there for you. There’s nothing wrong with waiting. Nothing wrong with wanting your first time to be special. And it kinda was. (though really, shining knight in armor? So not gonna happen)

Adult Julie!

Adult Juliana!

The thing is, you’ll learn about relationships and because you’re a decent person you’ll be okay. You care about people but sometimes you care a little too much. Don’t be afraid to say, fuck you, if need be. Don’t be afraid that people won’t like you all that much if you don’t agree with them. Or because you hang with the stoners sometimes. Be true to yourself and true to others. Because honesty is probably one of the greatest gifts you can give a person and it sure as hell is the greatest gift you can give to yourself.

Value YOU as a person, a friend, a family member. Don’t be afraid to put yourself first. Be kind to the kids no one else likes because some of those kids will grow up to be people you want to hang with. Go to Europe with Grandpa because you won’t get another chance.

Oh and the piano? Not gonna happen. Trust me, your singing skills are wicked but you’ll never be Tori Amos. You will pursue music and you will rock an amazing band. You will tour the country. You will meet a good man and have children of your own. A daughter you can tell all these words of wisdom too.

You will be happy. You’re one of the lucky ones.

Sourcebooks Fire, May 2014

Sourcebooks Fire, May 2014

Juliana Stone fell in love with books in the fifth grade when her teacher introduced her to Tom Sawyer. A tomboy at heart, she split her time between baseball, books, and music—three things that carried over into adulthood. She’s thrilled to be writing young adult as well as adult contemporary romance, and does so from her home somewhere in Canada. Visit