1. I know, it stinks that he doesn’t like you. Let’s write some bitter love poems and move on.
2. Keep writing, even if you think it’s no good. Start that dream project, even if you’re afraid you’ll screw it up. It doesn’t matter. Indulge in the muse.
3. Don’t apologize for your obsession with mythology and fairy tales. You will cherish these influences someday, and they will lead to your first published novel.
4. Don’t be ashamed of your love of using long vocabulary words – verisimilitude, amaranthine – in your poetry. Yes, those boys are laughing. Let’s see them rhyme anything with incarnadine.
5. Send your stuff out to contests and publications – especially anything focused on teen writing.
6. Don’t be discouraged by people telling you to “write what you know”. They mean well, but that doesn’t mean you need to take their advice. Write whatever you want to write. Even if it’s medieval princesses and vampires in a distopian universe with hell hounds guarding the gates. Write it.
7. Don’t spend time with people who make you feel crappy about yourself.
8. Experience life. Hang out with friends. Don’t be worried about your awkwardness. There are people who love you, regardless.
9. Write. Play with language. This is what you want to do. So do it.
10. Just you wait–college will be so much better.
In honor of my high school self, here’s one of my old favorites (oh La’s, where did you go?)