This is my favorite time to speak at schools around the country. I get to see something that doesn't happen much where I live. The trees change colors and a whole bunch of leaves fall to the ground. It's crazy! It's beautiful! And for some ridiculous reason, I forgot to take any photos of it.
But you know what else is crazy and beautiful? A hotel decorated by the guy who created the Precious Moments figurines.
The hotel has a Precious Moments gift shop, and two Precious Moments paintings in every room. And while I do think those big-eyed toddlers are...well...precious, their images can be kind of scary to wake up to in the middle of the night. It felt like the beginning of a Precious Final Moments horror movie.
But when the lights were on, yes, it was a very nice hotel.
Carthage High School (in Missouri) was also very nice. And whenever I get to a school and see my name on the marquee, I get both nervous and excited.
My teenage self would freak out to know I fly around the country to speak at high schools about being an author. He'd think it was both cool and scary.
And it is!
But mostly just cool.
On my first full day in Carthage, I spoke four times at the high school. Here, you can see my first Powerpoint slide, which is the cover of Thirteen Reasons Why.
That evening, I gave a presentation open to the public, attended by students and book club members from private schools and surrounding cities. The next day, I was back at Carthage High School for four more presentations.
At some point, I realized that this was my last school visit as a debut author. The next time I give a school presentation, my second book will be out. And here you can see me telling the students about that book, The Future of Us.
And when I came home, after being gone only three days, Isaiah showed me a new skill his mommy had taught him.