I've never been good at answering the role model question. You know, the one that goes "who is your role model and why?" I've never looked up to many celebrities, historical figures, or athletes as many people do. Even in my personal life, I've never really and truly looked up to anyone—they may be good role model material, but . . . they don't inspire me. So, my answer to the role model question has never been completely from the heart.
Now, after 18 years, I have finally found out who my true role models are: you.
I've never met any of you—not face-to-face—but from reading the tweets you tweet, the posts you publish, and the words you write, I know that most of you are truly amazing people. You are so . . . real. Genuine. YA authors (for you are who I have had the most experience with) seem to most stand-up people I've ever had contact with. I don't know if it's because you are more in-tune to the issues society and its individuals deal with as a result of writing stories showing how young adults face those issues, or something much simpler, but you seem to be a very moralistic group of people. Most of you seem to know what the right thing to do is and then encourage others to do the right thing as well. I've seen you stand up and speak out about so many things—bullying, plagiarism, abuse—I just want to thank you.
Thank you for writing the stories you write and being so passionate about doing so. Thank you for promoting literacy, self-esteem, confidence, recovery, choice, morals, and countless other things. Thank you for standing up against bullying and other wrongs, for encouraging others stick to good morals, and for just being . . . the good people that you are.
Every time you impart any sort of lesson in your stories, stand up for yourself and others in blog posts, or just simply demonstrate good morals and decisions in any shape or form, you touch somebody's life. You inspire your readers (and non-readers too). You brighten their days and lift their spirits. I just really want to let you know how much I (and most of my fellow readers) look up to you.
Thank you for being good, upstanding role models and for providing your readers with ways to learn good life lessons.
THANK YOU SO MUCH.
One of your many, many readers
This post was prompted by a different letter that Sarah Daltry wrote, titled "Open Letter to Bullies," last week on her own blog. I encourage you to click on that link, read the post, and see one of many examples of authors sticking up for what they believe in and demonstrating how good of people they are.