Now and Laters. Starbust, Pixie Stix. If she gets too bitchy, just feed her this crap. As long as the sugar high is in effect, you and the wildlife should be safe.

What is the real question is not whether to be, but how to be?

Letting go. Everyone talks about it like it's the easiest thing. Unfurl your fingers one by one until your hand is open.

I guess high school really is ancient history, she concludes.

My first YA novel, not many people have read. It's a fickle business. There's a degree of timing and luck involved.

When you make such a large withdrawal of happiness, somewhere you'll have to make an equally large deposit. It all goes back to the universal law of equilibrium.

Look I accept Adam because you love him. And I assume he accepts me because you love me...your love binds us.'...The funny thing was, I never really bought into Kim's notion that they were somehow bound together through me- until just now when I saw her half carrying him down the hospital corridor.

Pictures can be pretty deceptive.

Because it doesn't seem like living to me, it seems like persevering, like it's the most I can hope for.

It had to do with the doubts. The same niggling doubts I always had about not belonging. I didn't feel like I belonged with my family, and now I didn't feel like I belonged with Adam, except unlike my family, who was stuck with me, Adam had chosen me, and this I didn't understand. Why had he fallen for me? It didn't make sense.

Pete and Repeat went out in a boat. Pete fell out. Who was saved?

Because for that day, I really did become Lulu. Maybe not from the film or the real Louise Brooks, but my own idea of what Lulu represented. Freedom. Daring. Adventure. Saying yes.

You type what you're feeling and press send before you have a chance to talk yourself out of it. And then you wait, and wait, and wait, and nothing comes back, so all those things you thought were so important to say, really, they weren't. They weren't worth saying at all.

Willem laughs again. The sound is clear and strong as a bell, and it fills me with joy, and it's like, for the first time in my life, I understand that this is the point of laughter, to spread happiness.

Every fiction has its base in fact.

The words he writes to his music, they're poetry.

Some things are impossible to tear yourself away from.

Her hands were freezing, just like they always were, so I warmed them, just like I always did.

Something special is ending, and you're sad, but you can't be that said because, hey, it was good while it lasted, and there'll be other vacations, other good times.

Me, too, I said. And then we stopped talking for a while as Adam strummed an unfamiliar melody. I asked him what he was playing.

It wasn't even a fight, really. We didn't shout. We barely even argued, but a snake of tension quietly slithered into our lives.

Two oceans between us. And still not enough.

Gramps's recognition, and the permission he just offered me—it feels like a gift. Gramps doesn't leave me. He slumps back into the chair. It's quiet now. So quiet that you can almost hear other people's dreams. So quiet that you can almost hear me tell Gramps, Thank you.

But then I go and look at the actual notes and.

Obey the muse, Liz said. She's a fickle mistress.

There are like twenty people in that waiting room right now. Some of them are related to you. Some of them are not. But we're all your family.

I'm not sure it's possible to simultaneously love something and keep it safe. Loving someone is such an inherently dangerous act. And yet, love, that's where safety lives.

You stood over me and you made a promise to me, as sacred as any vow. And I can understand why you're angry, but you can't blame me. You can't hate me for taking your word.

There are so many ways to live, to define what living means for you and you alone. We are so narrow in our thinking, and once you understand that, once you decide to not abide by these artificial constraints, anything is possible and you are so liberated.

She's the bridge between the doctors and the people, and you can see the strain of balancing between those two worlds.

We like movies and books that give us this emotionally moving experience, where you feel like a slightly different person, and you see the world a little different after you finish. It lets you see your own life in a different way, and it actually makes you feel really good.

In English class, someone flung a folded-up square of notebook paper onto the floor next to my right foot. I picked it up and opened it. It read, Bitch! Nobody had ever called me that before, and though I was automatically furious, deep down i was also flattered that I had elicited enough emotion to be worthy of the name.

Travelling's not something you're good at. It's something you do. Like breathing. You can't work too much at it, or it feels like work. You have to surrender yourself to the chaos. To the accidents.

She was in a free fall now. And it wasn't killing her. In fact, she was beginning to wonder if she might've had it backwards. All that fixating on the fall...maybe she should've been paying more attention to the free.

Please Mia," he implores. "Don't make me write a song.

When Allyson smiles, Willem is reminded of a sunrise. A bit of light, then more of it, then a burst of brightness. A sunrise is something you can see all the time and still marvel at. Maybe that is why her smile feels so familiar. He has seen many sunrises.

After graduation, I wanted to work for 'Sassy', which I loved, but it had folded. So I wound up at 'Seventeen' for three years on staff and two as a contributor, and I wrote these great stories that nobody ever believes 'Seventeen' does. Serious stories for teens about social justice issues - gun control, migrant farm workers.

There is a blinding flash, a pain that rips through me for one searing instant, a silent scream from my broken body. For the first time, I can sense how fully agonizing staying will be.

Sometimes fate or life or whatever you want to call it, leaves a door a little open and you walk through it. But sometimes it locks the door and you have to find the key, or pick the lock, or knock the damn thing down. And sometimes, it doesn't even show you the door, and you have to build it yourself.

You don't ever find things when you're looking for them. You find them when you're not.

Once the options increase, settling on one becomes harder.

Everyone has hardship in their life. Everyone has pain.

I'm scared of losing you, she said in the faintest of voices.

I love being a mom. But there's a certain kind of tedium to your life when your kid is young. Writing allows you to wander when your kid is napping in a crib ten feet away. So that's the great joy of writing fiction for me.

It's an act of bravery to feel your feelings, even if your feelings are telling you to die.

And just in general, I'm better. Better than I've been since Bram died, and in some ways better than I was even before that. No, Lulu didn't break my hear. But I'm beginning to wonder if in some roundabout way, she fixed it.

Oh honey, have you learned nothing from these plays? Ain't such a line between faking and being.

But now here I am: No money. No place to stay. It should be my worst nightmare. But I don't care. It's funny the things you think you're scared of until they're upon you, and then you're not.

I'm crying out of gratitude.