Since 2am I’ve been in pain; it never fails–the semester ends, and my immune system just lets go…all the health issues it kept at bay come crashing down, reminding me that self-care is important. The miracle, however, is that as soon as I started my workshop at Brooklyn College this evening, the pain disappeared…I completely forgot about it until I sat down on the train to come home, and then the pain returned. Not as bad as before, though–and I got some cake on my way home, so that’s my reward for enduring such discomfort all day. I sold all 15 copies of Wish and one copy of Bird, plus a book of plays; it’s such an honor to know people *want* to read my work! I don’t think I’m very good at talking about my books, but I run off at the mouth when I talk about my “process.” Someone asked me about visualizing characters, and I went off on this long tangent about the book club I started with the girls in my building. I’m *so* deeply indebted to the open-minded, generous educators who have given me access to their classrooms. This was my second presentation at Brooklyn College, and once again I felt very welcome and the class was full of engaged, lively student teachers who gave me great feedback on my writing workshop. When I finally do try it out on teens, it’ll be much stronger thanks to their suggestions. Their professor, Jessica Siegel, gave them the option of preparing a lesson based on Wish or on Lynn Nottage’s play, Ruined. I’d love to know how educators would use Wish in the classroom! I prepared a study guide, but still don’t know how young readers are reacting to the book. Teachers love it, but maybe teens will be turned off; I just finished The Door of No Return and was seriously disappointed. But maybe it really appeals to teens who have different expectations. I’ll write a formal review later. For now, I need to unwind. Tomorrow morning I do a presentation on Bird at the Bedford branch of the BPL. And we got some more good news about Bird–it’s the winner (tied with another title) of the Paterson Prize for Books for Young People (from The Poetry Center at ) in the Grades 4 to 6 category. The list isn’t online yet, but should be up in a week or two. Now–time for cake!