Tuesday, September 21, 2010

One Book = MY BOOK!!!


This Thursday, I'll be participating in one of the greatest honors of my writing career. The beautiful folks in Rome, Georgia chose Thirteen Reasons Why as their One Book Many Voices community read. So I'll be heading Down South to speak at several schools during the day, then giving a community presentation that evening.

Their newspaper has been hyping my visit for several weeks. They recently held an essay contest for middle school, high school, and college students in order to have a special dinner with me before the community presentation. Seven winners were chosen from 178 essays, and I am so excited to share a meal with those students!

But while I've used words like "greatest honors of my writing career" and "so excited", let me also add "insanely nervous" to describe what's going on. This community has set the bar fairly high. The past three authors they've invited have been Paul Rusesabagina (his autobiography, An Ordinary Man, was the basis for the movie Hotel Rwanda), Sherman Alexie (for The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian), and Dr. Maya Angelou (for I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings).

Every time I read through those names, my throat goes: Gulp!


If you're anywhere near Rome, Georgia this Thursday, I'd love to see you!

16 comments:

Literally Lynne said...

I got excited for a second...I thought you were going to be in Rome, Italy and I was going to send my son (and friends) to see you! But alas, he is nowhere near sweet Georgia. Have fun!

Sabrina said...

If I were anywhere near Rome, Georgia this Thursday, I'd love to come and see you too! Don't be nervous; I'm sure you'll be fantastic! I'll be thinking of you here in NJ on Thursday! :)

P.S. I actually just finished reading "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian" by Sherman Alexie; it was recommended to me by another writer whose blog I follow. :)

Jay Asher said...

Lynne - Rome, Italy is THE city I need to see eventually. And if they'll bring me out there to speak, all the better!

Sabrina - I've met Mr. Alexie a few times. Very cool guy. I've never met Mr. Rusesabagina or Dr. Angelou, but they seem like pretty swell people, too!

Rita said...

Whoa. This is completely amazing. Congratulations, and happy travels!!

K. M. Walton said...

When I was in the classroom as a middle school teacher my district (and the community) did One Book and we had Mawi Asgedom one year & Alvin Law the next...two men with incredible real life stories.

I remember the power of the entire district and community reading those books, discussing those books and then meeting the authors. YOU will impact so many!!!!

Claire Dawn said...

That is some AMAZING company! Good luck!

Larissa said...

That's awesome. Have fun!

Jackson Porter said...

Hey, Mr. Asher, I haven't read your book I'm going to go out and buy it today though.

On Monday I asked Selena Gomez what her favorite book was, the disney actress, you may know her, she replied 13 Reasons Why.

Just thought I'd share that with ya.

Jay Asher said...

That was very cool of Selena to say that. I hope you enjoy the book, Jackson!

And since Ms. Gomez helped me sell another book, let me encourage you to go out and buy her latest c.d. (A Year Without Rain) which just came out!

Read To My Kids said...

Admittedly, not your typical blogger. 52 year-old dad of two teenage boys (oldest turned 14 on your 8th anniversary!), I finished TRW and had to forward my appreciation and congratulations. Your work will be required reading for my sons and highly recommended to their junior high teachers and librarian.

That your first book would be so poignant is amazing. That it would be so creatively told is remarkable. That is would resonate with a reader of my vintage is evidence of the importance of its subject and message.

An outstanding, moving, relevant, memorable work. I fear that your protagonists will haunt me for a long time - and I hope that Bryce ultimately got his comeuppance.

Continued success -- however you define it.

beck nicholas said...

Congratulations. Esteemed company indeed!

Jay Asher said...

"Continued success -- however you define it."

What a beautiful way to put it. Thank you!

Dr. Laurie Johnson, LPC said...

Jay, you were sensational! You had every person in that auditorium in the palm of your hands. My 13 and 16 yr old sons, and my 15 year old daughter and I all sat on the edge of our chairs. It was so different from what I expected, but it was just as brilliant as your writing. You have the rare kind of charisma that draws people from all backgrounds to a common ground of good will, despite tackling topics that scare the heck out of all of us! I've encountered so few people like you, that it is hard to find "earth words" to describe the ideal chemistry you have to shoulder heartbreaking topics without showing the wear and tear of it all. I guess I was expecting you to be weary and heavy laden, but somehow, you project hope, humor, and what's best in the human spirit. Were it not innate, I'm sure an agent would beg you to develop a similar personna! I was slayed by the attacks I read about your book, and I hope those will generate press, so that intelligent people can embrace your book, and parents can be spared the tragedies that your writing can avert. Well done, good job, and keep it up. Please convey to your amazing wife the message that her input was priceless, that all the females in the room sighed in unison when you spoke of her, and that we appreciate how she shares you with the rest of the world...

Jim said...

Fantastic work Jay. You made my daughter's day, and your presentation was awesome.

The humor you threw in was great, and she was still talking about on the way to school today.

I wish you all the success in the world on your second book, even though it's not about vampires or Easter bunnies.

Thanks for visiting Rome and sharing your time with us and this community.

Jay Asher said...

Dr. Johnson and Jim, you two just made my day. Thank you so much!

Joan said...

Congrats Jay! Our "One Book" event was just for R.A. Long HS, and you have an entire town now! WOW!!! But did the major declare it "Jay Asher Day?" lol

Alexie is speaking at our WLMA conference in 3 weeks. Loved Part-time Indian!

Joan