(names changed to initials; a few spelling mistakes corrected; otherwise exactly as written)
me at 12 (May '93):
"Today D was gone for the track meet. I saw him on my way home. When I was crossing the street I thought the light was green 'cause I saw it changing. It was red! The art show is tonight. I hope I see D there. Bye!"
at 13 (March '94):
"I showed my dance to M and T at lunch. They didn't like it. I don't think it's really fair of them to criticize, I mean, they haven't done any work on our dance yet. M wants to use "her" music. I don't know what her problem is. Well, actually, I think I do. She likes to control everything so it's just the way she wants. It comes with being a perfectionist."
at 14 (March '95):
"It is odd the way some days turn out. Yesterday ought to have been a bad day, and yet it was a rather good one. I was tired most of the day, and both of the straps on my new knapsack broke, but I felt strangely exhilarated. I believe I have found another kindred spirit. And I can't believe it took me so long."
at 15 (April '96):
"Today was really hectic. First, in the morning, my mom went into the shower right when I was going to use it, so then I was scared I was going to be late for my art trip (to AGO). The trip ran late, so I was scared I'd be late for my afternoon classes, and I would have been if I hadn't eaten my lunch on the streetcar. In History, I realized I had forgotten one of my Latin books, so I had to rush to my locker in between classes to get it. And to top things off, Mr D wasn't in class and he left me in charge of taking up the homework. I felt so stupid. But it went okay, I didn't die, you know, and, well, I don't know."
at 16 (February '97):
"And here we are again. Where? you ask. I haven't the faintest idea, but it sounds good. Anyway, on with our story.
Saw S in history class (of course). I looked over as he came in and he was looking at me so I smiled. I'd already talked to him--it was a late start and I'd gotten there early. As I'd been walking around I'd run into him (not literally) and talked a bit. Mostly I asked a question and he answered and then I had to think of another question. Not much of a conversation, so I didn't stick around long."
at 17 (March '98):
"I guess it doesn't matter. Because when I tell him he apologizes and so on. I guess it's the feeling though, like with the dancing thing, like he's humoring me, telling me I looked good when I probably didn't--telling me--and himself--what I want to hear. Or what he thinks I want to hear. What I want to hear is him. How hard is that? Very hard. I know. Perhaps I am too demanding. I know this also. But I guess someone has to be looking out for me, and although my view is rather skewed, I'm the only one I can trust with the job. *smile*"
Something to keep in mind if I ever decide to write a series of books about the same character, spanning more than one year! It's not just having that distinctive voice, but making sure it evolves as the character goes through life.
Did you keep journals as a teen? Have you read them since? If so, what did you discover? :)