Why don’t you pour yourself a drink (wine or juice, depending on what grade you’re in), and I will tell you all about myself. Just kidding. It’s hard to talk about myself. Especially when I don’t know if you’re here because you read my kids book or because you saw me speak at your college about suicide and vulnerability. Two very distinct crowds! I compiled a list of tough questions from my friends and tried to answer them here so you could figure out who I am. Here goes:
who are you?
Is anyone ever able to answer this one? I’m Laurenne. I was born outside of Chicago, but I’ve lived in New York, Miami, San Francisco, Madrid, and Los Angeles. I’m a daughter. A seeker. Lover of roller coasters and blueberries and my soon-to-be husband. I am an over-analyzer. A doer. A motivator. A volunteer. An adventurer. I’m obsessed with stories. Of the past. Of love. Of how you got to be you. I sit in libraries for hours. I don’t care about brand names. I like to wear boots and pajamas (not together). I prefer pumpkin pie over chocolate. I like to sit in cafes and eavesdrop on conversations between old friends. I prefer lyrics over rhythms. I am learning to play the piano. I have a very fat cat named Cheddar, and I wish he would let me hold him for longer than a minute.
What’s your favorite thing in the world?
I love love love to see people smiling and feeling like they’re not alone.
why didn’t you write a story about me?
When I was reading picture books, I didn’t feel like I was very fairly represented. Okay, I guess I didn’t think about it back then, but there were hardly ANY books back then about kids like me– with divorced parents, bad haircuts, and a gay dad. I want to make sure everyone can see themselves in one of my books, and I’m working on it. Hopefully I WILL write a story about you soon. (Tell me who you are, and I’ll write one.)
you’re coming to my school. why should I listen to what you have to say?
Well, I come to high schools and colleges to tell you the secrets of the world, so you better not be texting or you’ll miss the answer to your existential questions. Or maybe you’re in first grade. Then you should listen because we talk a lot about love. And who doesn’t love love?
what is the best thing you ever ever did?
Oh man, this is a tough question. I’ve done some very great things in my life. One year I took a trip around the world. I learned Spanish because my father never taught me. I started a storytelling show that encourages people to share their stories so they don’t feel ashamed of them. Lately, the best thing I’m doing is relaxing. It’s hard to do, but I’m really working on it. I am getting married next year, so I am trying to take lots of deep breaths before this other chapter of my life begins.
who do you like better, your mom or your dad?
Oh, come on! That’s not a fair question. But since my dad is dead, I can just say my mom and he won’t get mad. My mom!
What do you like to write?
I like to write silly things and things that make people cry. I like when people cry because it means they’re feeling something and feeling something is one of the most important parts of the whole world. I don’t just like to write. Writing is how I think, so I actually HAVE to write. If I am having a bad day or if I can’t figure something out, I must write in my journal until everything becomes clear.
Where’s your favorite place in the whole world?
I like traveling, and I do have a goal to visit all 195 countries before I die! I am now at around 50. Just 145 to go. No matter where I am, my favorite places to be in the whole wide world are: floating in a warm salty sea with a bunch of curious fish AND nestled under some very fluffy covers in a hotel bed with my best friend and nothing to do.