by: Gayle Forman, author of If I Stay
In honor of Adam’s band’s name, Shooting Star, and Lauren’s blog Shooting Stars, Lauren asked me to wish on a shooting star with five wishes for the five points of a star. The thing is, I’m Jewish, and my people do the six-pointed star, so I’m going to take an extra wish and go for six.
Here they are.
Wish #1: The health of my family. Writing a book like IF I STAY made me confront some of the worst things imaginable that could happen to a family, both as a mother, a wife and a daughter. Not to start my wishes with such a morbid one, but may nothing like that ever happen to me, my kids, husband, parents, siblings, extended clan, or indeed to any of you reading this. May none of us ever have to make the kind of choice Mia makes.
Wish #2: Some good will come out of this crap economy. Every day it’s more bad news and more layoffs and I know that readers’ families are being affected, whether their parents are getting laid off or they’re having to rethink college choices. It sucks. But part of me hopes that when we come out of this—because we will—that some of the screwed up values in which materialism and consumption became a wee bit too important will be re-aligned. I actually think that’s already happening. And I think that teenagers, for all the crap they get, were on the right track where this was concerned way before the adults started to see the light.
Wish #3: The Friday Night Lights will never jump the shark. That Project Runway will un-jump it. I just heard that FNL got renewed for two more seasons, which makes me so happy. And that PR is out of its legal limbo and will now air. But Project Runway has lost something lately, and I hope it can get it back. I miss those early days of Santino and Jay and Laura. I’m so thankful for good TV. I don’t have the attention span for whole movies these days, so 45 minutes at night is a perfect way to de-clutter my brain.
Wish #4: I have this whole scenario worked out. Malia Obama reads If I Stay. Passes it off to Michelle. They both become fans. Michelle decides to host some sort of YA author/working parent/whathaveyou at the White House, but in the informal family quarters, and the President will be there so I’ll get to hang out with the whole family. Like how the Obamas hosted a Superbowl party. Only this time it’d be a YA author party. And I’d get to bring my family, too. And after, we’d all stay in touch. I have a feeling I’m not the only one who nurses such a fantasy/wish.
Wish #5: Composite wish in which we find a cure for cancer and AIDS and all other deadly diseases and catch Bin Laden and eliminate global poverty and extremism and terrorism by raising up the standard of living all over the world so people are too well off to be pissed off at one another and gay marriage is legalized and other forms of institutionalized discrimination go away (I won’t wish away prejudice because as long as there is fear, people will have prejudice) and also in this wish, people stop constantly texting and emailing on their iPhones all the time because they’re, like, missing out actual stuff happening here and now, and the gigantically tall people don’t always sit right in front of me at the movies.
Wish #6: I get to keep writing YA for the rest of my life. I love what I do. Every day that I get lost in a story is a gift to me and I’m always a little bit scared that someone will take it away. This wish, however, is entirely up to you guys—readers—to grant.