Author Meeting: Neal Shusterman

Last night I met my first NBA all-star!!! By NBA, of course, I mean National Book Award, not basketball (his joke, not mine).

But I’m getting ahead of myself because this man has won many awards, and he will tell you that after he got the call for the nomination for his biggest award, he had to go back to cleaning dog vomit off his kitchen floor like any other “normal” person. The person I am talking about, is the amazingly funny and humble Neal Shusterman (author of Challenger DeepScytheUnwind, plus he’s dabbled in film and TV writing/directing….). My fiance and I drove about 90 minutes last night to meet him and hear him and four other authors speak last night and it was a great experience. My fiance, Dan, is not a reader, but he is an avid movie-watcher with a great mind and a wild imagination, and if you can get him hooked on the idea of your book, then I’m impressed for you. Of course, Neal had him sold on Scythe in about 30 seconds. I own the book but have not yet read it. Dan plans on listening on the audiobook. Again, I am beyond impressed. Hats off to you, Mr. Shusterman!!

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The main point of my post is this: if you ever have the opportunity to hear Neal Shusterman speak, or to meet him and pick his brain, or to go to a book signing, or to find out about his backstory and his inspiration for his writing, or be near him or anything like that, jump at that chance. Even the other authors on the panel say that his bad ideas are good. Of course, being his humble self, Neal says that he is waiting for the day that his publishers “find out that [he] has been faking it all along.” He has an inspiring background and I don’t want to tell his story for him, for it is his to tell, but trust me when I say that there is a reason that he is a great writer. He really draws his words from the heart. So check him out.

My greatest wish for humanity is not for peace or comfort or joy. It is that we all still die a little inside every time we witness the death of another. For only the pain of empathy will keep us human. There’s no version of God that can help us if we ever lose that.” – Neal Shusterman, Scythe

Listening to: “Moonlight” by Grace VanderWaal

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