Saturday, December 06, 2008

A Mermaid Welcome

Our blog has been getting a lot of new visitors recently. Many of you are finding us through the recently updated Thirteen Reasons Why website. Now, before you go scrolling and clicking around…be careful. If you don’t pay attention, you might leave here thinking Jay has a severe multiple-personality disorder. And that’s not true. At least, it hasn’t been confirmed. There are two other authors (hopefully, soon-to-be-published authors) blogging on this site with Jay. Robin and Eve! So check 'em out while you're here.

And for those of you who stumbled upon us while looking for info on a li’l something going on in Iowawelcome! It's come to our attention that the newspaper made things out to be a little calmer than they actually were. So we wanted to take a moment and say thank you to the students, teachers, and librarians who stood up to defend something much more important than this one book. As well, thank you for taking the time to remind people about context. Context is fairly important. Oddly enough, this ruckus caused so many people in Des Moines to buy Thirteen Reasons Why, it helped raise the book another notch to number 9 on the New York Times bestsellers list. So thanks for that, too!


Sarah Laurenson said...

How very fun, Jay. And that it seems things have turned out OK. Censorship is not nice in any form. I read Looking for Mr. Goodbar when I was thirteen. Not exactly appropriate for the age, but it never claimed to be. Kids can handle a lot more than parents think. And Thirteen Reasons Why is no Goodbar.

And of course you other mermaids will be published soon!

Shelli said...

This whole time I thought it was Jay's feminie sides coming out. Kinds like Beyonce's Sasha Fierce :)

cynjay said...

I resent the comment that the book is 'trashy'. Obviously someone who hasn't read it and misunderstood the issue. Sheesh.

Anonymous said...

I think it's a huge compliment to be at the center of such a controversy! Congrats, Jay.

Mrs.S said...

You have accomplished an amazing feat by capturing all the emotions teenagers must experience. Your novel speaks of truth, and as we have learned in the past, many are uncomfortable with the truth. The truth is not always pretty, packaged, and has happy endings.

I am reading your novel to one of my 8th grade classes. We really needed it as a class. Many of the students have known someone who has already taken their life. Many of them deal with many of the issues Hannah faced.

Thank you for this book. We needed it. I didn't just find your book and decide to read it. My students were struggling with questions and issues. As a result, I did a search and found your book last fall.

You are having such an amazing impact on 18 8th graders in Lincoln, NE. Please remember this when you are up against all of those trivial complaints from people that do not take the time to read your novel or think truthfully about what kids need.

Disco Mermaids said...

Any impact I'm having is thanks to you, Mrs. S. Your students are very lucky.

I must tell ya, when I first started hearing grumbles about the issues in my book, I was crushed. Crushed! They weren't attacking my writing (which would've been fine), but my ideas.

And then I began hearing from teens (y'know, the people I wrote the book for). They were opening up about how much the book meant to them and positively affected them.

Now, whenever I hear those grumbles, I get pissed off...but not for myself. I get angry for my readers who would've been denied access to my book (and others like it) had the grumblers gotten their way.

So yes, it is kind of cool to be at the center of a controversy like this! But sometimes the grumblers win, which scares me.

- Jay

Linda said...

Hi Jay, I just wanted to lend my voice and support as a librarian...and mom...and fellow Cal Poly alum (I think we may have been in school together, actually). Well, the one good thing I can say is if you want teens to absolutely read a book, the very best thing you can do is try to ban it. So...whoop!
People who ban books are also the ones that don't even try to understand teens and what they may be going through.

I loved your book and I'm eager to see what you write next--I've passed Thirteen Reasons on to lots of people at my library and I'll continue to do so.

Best of luck to you.

Toran23 said...

As another reader said, being at the center of a controvery is a compliment. Well behaved books never make history. I have recommended this book to every graduate student in my MLIS degree and all of my co-workers at the Public Library of Charlotte, NC. But never mind what the adults say, it is the teens that need this book, and it is the teens that love it. Well done, you are a literary hero!