OK, so, in no particular order, here are the top five things I learned while I was on my barnstorming book tour of Nebraksa:
1) It still isn’t OK to talk about girls kissing girls in Central Nowhere–far from it (see above image). But I did it anyway, and it felt good, and I loved looking at the shock on people’s faces. In Eastern Nowhere, it was way easier.
2) I still want to be Mrs. Koch (or Mrs. Koch-Johns, as she’s known now). She’s still my best role model for being a loving, kind, kick-you-in-the-ass-at-the-same-time teacher. Love. Her.
3) I love high school students. Love them. Love how funny they are, how brave and shy, and how they’re ready to learn stuff and engage with you. Love. Them.
4) People you haven’t seen for 20 years will still support your book, even if they don’t agree with the language or content.
5) I think I’ve opened a Pandora’s box. And I’m OK with that.
(Bonus thing I learned: my family is really supportive! But I knew that already.)
Suffice it to say it was a good few days. Now it’s time to work. Maybe even work on book #3!