This weekend I helped put on a couple events at my university. I volunteered Friday at our first annual Publishing Career Forum, then Saturday I co-ran orientation for my study abroad program from last summer to Oxford. (I’m so jealous of the group that gets to go this year.) (For real, no matter what university you attend, if you’re interested in spending your summer in England, the St Peter’s College Summer School at Magdalen College, University of Oxford is the way to go.)
Outside of those events, I’ve also been doing a ton of homework, and Ch1Con work, and revising, and last night I did my laundry and cleaned my room at 2 AM, and yeah. As much as I love my classes, I am 110% ready for this semester to be over.
The other thing that happened this weekend is that a certain Teens Can write, Too! founder started an INTERNATIONALLY TRENDING HASHTAG.
— Julia Byers (@Julia_Byers) March 29, 2015
Despite John’s status as my arch nemesis, even I have to admit that this hashtag is completely brilliant. Last I checked, it had been tweeted with over twenty thousand times and has been featured in articles from places ranging from Buzzfeed UK to The Huffington Post. And the results range from the hilarious, to the serious and important.
Girl finds out boy from class has been sneaking into her room to “watch her sleep.” She’s terrified. Presses charges. #VeryRealisticYA
— Kody Keplinger (@Kody_Keplinger) March 29, 2015
LAST #VeryRealisticYA I SWEAR: Biggest mystery in girl’s life is where the hell her bobby pins and hair ties went.
— Nikki Wang (@Nikki_Wang) March 29, 2015
Main character is chosen to take part in terrifying death match, has no secret skills except writing fanfic, dies first. #VeryRealisticYA
— Tatum Flynn (@Tatum_Flynn) March 29, 2015
People of color exist in the world. So do LGBTQ people. And even some LGBTQ people of color! #VeryRealisticYA
— Malinda Lo (@malindalo) March 30, 2015
Minority students are not token best friends to bolster the main character. They are well rounded human beings. #VeryRealisticYA
— Sara Farizan (@SaraFarizan) March 29, 2015
As Dahlia Adler so perfectly puts it:
I love how #VeryRealisticYA is a perfect combination of stuff I desperately want to see and stuff that would make the worst books.
— Dahlia Adler (@MissDahlELama) March 29, 2015
It’s funny, because just a few days before this whole thing started, a group of us were discussing on Twitter the way being the creator of something popular gives you power. And with that power comes the responsibility to try to do good with it.
More than anyone else, John was a proponent for the fact that if someone is listening, it is your job to draw focus to minority voices.
True to his word, John has taken the platform #VeryRealisticYA gave him to draw attention to the need for diversity in literature.
So, basically, John is an incredible human and he is SO deserving of all the attention he’s getting and I’m proud to have an arch nemesis who is so good.
And now, a couple more of my favorites from #VeryRealisticYA (although really, there are SO MANY MORE GREAT ONES you can find on Twitter):
Girl gets a note reading “I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER”. She’s relieved someone is finally reading her tumblr. #VeryRealisticYA
— TheBloggess (@TheBloggess) March 29, 2015
Off to drown in homework! (#VeryRealisticNA)