Today I am pleased to welcome Charity Tahmaseb and Darcy Vance, the authors of The Geek Girl's Guide to Cheerleading. You can visit Charity and Darcy at their website and also check out the rest of the tour posts here! Also, if you comment on any of the tours posts you have the chance to win a Summer Geek Read Prize Pack from the authors! Stop back this Thursday to see my review of The Geek Girl's Guide to Cheerleading!
You Don’t Have to Wait!
One of our favorite themes in The Geek Girl’s Guide to Cheerleading is: You Don’t Have to Wait! There’s a point in the story where ultra-nerd Todd realizes this and corners Bethany in the Little Theater:
“We don’t have to wait,” he said.
O-kay. “Wait for what?”
“For anything. We’re always talking. Can’t wait for the weekend, can’t wait for summer, for graduation. For anything that doesn’t involve high school. I mean, I wouldn’t have picked cheerleading--”
“You don’t have the legs for it.”
He held up both hands to shush me. “But there you are, embracing the here and now, making the most of high school.”
Oh, so that was what I was doing? And I thought all I’d been trying to do was keep most of the school from seeing my purple-clad butt.
“And why the hell shouldn’t we?” Todd smacked his fist against his palm. “Who says you’ve got to be popular to be a cheerleader?”
Certainly not me.
“Or.” He peered at me over the top of his glasses. “Student body president.”
Throughout the process of revising our book, getting it published and now promoting it, we’ve actively sought out help from young people – so we know this is true...you really DON’T have to wait! There are things you can accomplish right now if you just take a chance.
Some of the great (and cool) people we’ve worked with along the way are:
The Granada Hills Gang – These are the kids who ate all Darcy’s chips, drank all her soda, and taught her that age really can just be a state of mind. They helped us endlessly with details like dialogue, sweet shoe choices and how online RPGs really work. Hi Brittany, Nicole, Thanh, Andrea, James, Jarrod, Robbie, Johnny, Carly!
The Website Crew – Apart from Shelby N (Queen of Code and definitely young at heart) all other aspects of our website – its design, implementation and emergency trouble shooting – were completed by Darcy’s son Matt (age 23) and her friend Sean (age 21). We also regularly tap Andrew (Charity’s 13 year old son) for his opinion/ideas. And her six year old daughter, Kyra, provides any original artwork we need for the site.
The Creative Kids – The photographer who took Darcy’s author photo and pics for our free short story (Speechless – have you read it yet?) is a college student named Nikki. Darcy’s daughter is also a college student and designed the t-shirts we give out as prizes. And then there’s Mieke -- a high school girl who interns at Darcy’s local newspaper. She wrote Geek Girl’s Guide’s first news article – and got it published on the front page!
The Bloggers – Oh my gosh, what would we do without you? You guys are on the front lines of getting the word out about The Geek Girl’s Guide to Cheerleading. Your thoughtful reviews and allowing us to take over your space for a day are essential to telling teen and young adult readers about our book. Without you, we’d just be another novel on the bookstore shelf. You are VIPs to us, and yet, most of you are still in your teens or early twenties.
The Readers – You might not think reading counts as doing something, but if you feel that way, you haven’t met our fans. They have a special Super Power – just by leaving a comment, or sending an email they can lift these writers off the ground and send us soaring up to the clouds.
So … want to stop waiting? Embrace your inner geek. What do you love? Writing? Start a blog (okay, so many of you already have.) Public speaking? Look at--or listen to--what some teens are doing at Custer County Youth Radio. Acting? Do what our friend Sam did – write and direct your own award winning plays.
Or … embrace your inner fear. That’s what Geek Girl Charity did her junior year when she joined the speech team (like the protagonist in Speechless). “Oh, I was awful,” she says, but she knew she couldn’t go through life not being able to speak in front of a crowd. Unlike Kara, the heroine of Speechless, it took her until her senior year before she ended up with any kind of award. Probably because she didn’t have a dead sexy class clown coaching her ;)
It is amazing what young people can accomplish so, what are you waiting for? (And, for any older folks who might be reading this, what are you waiting for? It’s never too late to start! – Darcy who was 49 ¾ years old when Geek Girls was published.)