The MTV Books Blog will close on October 31. Follow us to our new home at YA Outside the Lines on November 1!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

What I loved most about being a teen

When Jennifer sent me this month's topic I wasn't sure what to write. I can't think of any one thing I loved most about being a teen. I pretty much loved everything about it. I loved school. I got along fine with my parents, I had a great brother who was a mere 11 months older than me. I had a ton of fun.

So how could I pick one thing?
When it came down to it, the things I kept coming back to happened during the summer. How I loved waking up on Friday mornings and hearing the lawn guys outside cutting the grass, how the smell would waft through my windows. I loved getting my paychecks from my summer jobs and feeling like I had the freedom to spend it however I wanted. I loved driving to the beach o Friday nights with my best friend, music blaring, windows down, for a party with a bonfire and a bunch of people. I loved going to Carvel on Sunday nights after dinner with my family and getting a large chocolate ice cream cone with rainbow sprinkles.

In my memory, summer was always sunny, always a blue sky, just perfect. My family was around, my friends were around, I had cool summer jobs, a car, and freedom. What more could I ask for?

When I was a teen it felt like the year was divided into two parts rather than four seasons - school and summer. Even today I feel like the start of a new year doesn't begin on January 1st, but when school begins in September instead. I miss having summer be special. I miss how it was three months when anything could happen. I miss that each summer brought a new job, new people to meet, new things to do.

So I guess what I loved most about being a teen was the summers. Summer was when I got to experience the freedom of being me, the freedom to choose how I spent my days, where I spent my nights, how I enjoyed every hour of sun.

Which is why I enjoyed writing my last two books so much. I got to spend every day thinking about summer as a 17 year old. And it doesn't get any better than that.

1 comment:

Stephanie Kuehnert said...

Well, I'm definitely the opposite of you in that I hated being a teen. But summers were good. The free time, the warmth, driving around with windows open, outdoor concerts. Yeah, I didn't appreciate it at the time, but it was definitely great!