have regained ability to read comics

Betty-Veronica-archie-and-friends-15503745-407-640On our way from the pumpkin patch in Willcox to Apple Annie’s Orchard in maybe third grade, I slid in the car after my friend (her moms were driving us around for this very Tucsonan of October adventures), and she offered me a choice: “Archie or Betty and Veronica?

I knew of the existence of these things because of intertextuality. I’m pretty sure I had seen those comics mentioned in a book I read at some point, but I had no idea what they were, really. I had no idea if I would like them. But since boys had cooties, I chose Betty and Veronica, and that was the end. And the beginning.

(Can I sidebar for a moment to say how much I value that in my childhood, I had more than one friend with whom this – sitting silently together in the same space and just reading by ourselves – was considered a perfectly acceptable and normal friendship activity?) Continue reading

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a love letter to how people my age say things

Hey, friends. This book, Never Have I Ever: My Life (So Far) Without a Date by Katie Heaney, is pretty great. It is my memoir, except I didn’t write it, which is weird. And also it is not at all like my life, but it totally is, too.

It’s like this. Katie Heaney is my age (in this book; actually, I think she’s about a year and a half older than I am) and has never dated someone. She, like me, has yet to understand how it is that two humans come to an understanding that they are going to publicly acknowledge that they hang out with each other. And accept the other person, more or less, how they are. So this is her life story, punctuated by crushes and almost-kisses and situations which totally should have made a right turn into boyfriendlandia but didn’t, all of which I am also painfully familiar with. (I should be fair and say that Heaney and I have had very different ways around this noboyfriendness when it comes to sexytimes, and also there was a four-month period in which I did have one, this one time, but it was very much out of our friends all dating each other, so it just made sense, and also, clearly it’s not one of those situations where having done it once changes your pheromones so you can become a member of the club – I am still not a member of the club of People Who Know How To Get Significant Others.) Continue reading

scholars are still humans, and that’s unacceptable

So I am reading a bunch of scholarly books and articles for my final paper for my realism class. Of course. Since the requirement is one essay, I found two book-length works that seemed relevant (the paper is on The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt: A Novel in Pictures; more about it in a later post) and am also looking for essays and chapters of other books that I already have. It’s not that I go above and beyond, it’s that I have no conception of proper scope for school papers and I want to know everything about everything.

Anyway. The book I read first is The Distant Mirror: Reflections on Young Adult Historical Fiction (Scarecrow Studies in Young Adult Literature) by Joanne Brown and Nancy St. Clair. It’s really useful, because before I can write what my paper is actually supposed to be about, I have to write in some way that proves that historical fiction is realism, so I thought this would give me some good background theory. Continue reading