Who Will It Be?

About Me

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I am a native North Dakotan, a professor at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah, and a YA writer. My first book, The Predicteds, is due out from Sourcebooks Fire in September. I'm represented by Alyssa Eisner Henkin of Trident Media Group. When I'm not writing or teaching writing, I'm an avid reader and an enthusiastic listener of podcasts (especially podcasts about books). I'm a fan of taking long walks on sunny days, browsing through the library on Saturday afternoons, and watching embarrassingly bad TV at any time. My favorite color is lunch.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Fudge: The Midlife Crisis Years

I first read a library copy of Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume when I was in second or third grade. I adored it. I managed to get a hold of my very own copy of Superfudge shortly after that. I read it until the cover fell off and I had to tape it back together. (My copy of Blubber is equally mangled; when I was about ten, I found a garage sale paperback that was already pretty tattered. Right before the cover disintegrated, I traced it in the hope of being able to draw my own replacement!) I loved those Judy Blume books more than just about anything else in the world.
Last week I found an audio copy of Double Fudge at the library. It’s read by Judy Blume herself, and she’s a terrific narrator. I want to call her up and invite her over for coffee and apple cinnamon muffins on my patio. At the very least, I want to write her a really long fan letter.  Reading those books again feels like visiting my very best friends from childhood.  And I still love them just as much!
I wish Judy Blume would write just one more novel telling me what Peter and Fudge Hatcher are like as middle-aged men. I assume that Peter followed his dad into advertising. He has two daughters and a dog. Tootsie grew up to be a dentist. Jimmy is a professional hockey player. Fudge is most certainly unemployed, save for a few stints as a game show contestant and a couple of viral videos. I’m quite sure he lives in Peter’s basement.   
All of Judy Blume's books were instrumental to me. I see the world the way I do now in part because of those books. They weren't just entertainment to me (though I did find them entertaining); more than anything, they taught me how other people think and live. And isn't that what literature is for?
If I can write a book that speaks to just one reader the way Judy Blume spoke to me, I’ll feel like a successful writer.
Then I'll quit writing and just watch more TV.


  1. I love Judy Blume, too. My favorites were: "Are you there God? It's Me, Margaret" (as a child) and then I loved "Summer Sisters" (as an adult). Reading her books was like having a close older cousin who could share little slices of her life and sneak peeks into what my life could or would be like. They were sometimes deliciously naughty and I felt like I was getting away with something when I read them.

    I can't wait to read what you've written. If your first book is half as entertaining as your blogs are (which I'm sure it is!), you'll be on your way to Judy-Blumedom in no time!

  2. Yes, I agree with all of your Judy Blume assessments. Thanks for always being such a supportive friend. I just love you!