Fan Mail

I get a fair amount of fan mail, enough that I don’t get back to most people. I’m more than a little sorry about that, and hope that all of you who send questions, enthusiasms, and remonstrations can understand.

It’s not that I don’t love you, it’s that you outnumber me.

But every once in a while comes a letter that is a bit different. This one from Annalisa in Colorado says things that lots of you have said, except with an unexpected twist at the end. I thought that maybe the rest of you might enjoy it.

Picture two girls, both pretty in their own way, but self-conscious to the point of believing themselves ugly. One girl is me; the other is Tally in Uglies. Tally and I both live in a world where there are pretty people, like models and movie stars, who make us feel ugly by their perfection. Tally believed that her eyes were too close together, her nose squashed, and her hair frizzy. Except for my long hair, I also used to believe I was ugly. After reading your book, I realized that true beauty is a result of our actions and not our face. You book moved me to act.

When I read Uglies, I could totally relate to Tally. I could tell she was a risk taker. I, too, wanted to take risks. Tally risks everything by journeying to the Smoke but realizes that friendship is more important than beauty. When she thinks, “If only people were smarter, evolved enough to treat everyone the same even if they looked different. Looked ugly,” (p97) I was moved. Tally got me thinking more about others than myself. I had seen pictures of girls with cancer who were bald, and realized I had no right to complain.

Around the time I finished your book, I decided to be a risk taker like Tally. I cut off eleven inches of hair, donating it to Locks of Love to make wigs for cancer patients who might believe they are ugly because of their baldness. This action made me feel beautiful inside despite losing one of my best features. I realized what David meant when he told Tally, “What you do, the way you think, makes you beautiful” (279).

Tally taught me about sacrificing to help others and the importance of inner beauty. After meeting Tally, I hold my chin a little higher and stand a little straighter, because I know I am pretty, no matter what anybody says and no matter how short my hair is. Thanks you for teaching me what beauty really is, and for inspiring the confidence inside me.

So you can probably see why I wanted to share that. Hearing from you guys—all of you—really is one of the best things about this job.

I’m looking forward to seeing tons of you on the upcoming tour.

Locks of Love lives here, by the way.

119 thoughts on “Fan Mail

  1. Scott, that is so inspiring. I am really glad to hear that you are having this affect on teen girls. I know it rang true with me when I read your books. I admire your efforts and your writing.

  2. that is so sweet. now I want to donate. but i dont have enough hair. maybe ill grow it out just so i can give some. you no what? im gonna go find a bunch of clothes i dont need and give them to charity. rite now.

    -Lizzy-wa OUT! 🙂

  3. inspiring. my mom donated her hair to locks of love a year or so ago.
    and dude, i think that’s the second time i got first comment.
    i think that mustwhat the coolest part of being an author would be–having all these crazy fan people. i mean, i bother my friends constantly by raving about what i’m writing. it would be nice to do that, but with people who actually care.
    then again, o doubt i’d be really good with masses of fans. i mean, my unoffical motto is “people suck.”
    it’s cuz i’m an optomist.

  4. hhmm…i have several mottos:
    karma. give something, get something.
    read. it helps build strong bones.
    be wierd. life’s too short.
    there’s several others, but the wierd one is my favorite.

    -Lizzy-wa OUT! 🙂

  5. I donated 10 inches of my hair to Locks of Love 2 years ago in 6th grade. My hair looked like a mushroom, but it was an amazing experience, and even fun!

  6. Oh my gosh, that is so awesome. I would totally love to do Locks of Love, but my hair’s not long enough. 🙁 I am growing it out, and I am so going to donate. I just don’t know where though.

    Great story, Scott. Great story.

  7. I have donated my hair to locks of love 3 times now and i think it is so fawsome that uglies got other people to do it too.

  8. that is wonderful!!! the book also moved me!! and i am so proud of her for doing that….my friend also donated her hair to locks of love.

  9. Wow! That’s so sweet *chorus of awww’s*
    I wish I could have long hair, but this summer I grew my hair out not even to my elbow, and it gave me a headache to tie it up because it like weighed me down, so I doubt I’d make it to 11 inches.

    It must feel great to inspire people like that! =]

  10. Aww. That’s really touching. I love that people can take this much from your books, Scott. It shows that not all teenagers are as spoiled and arrogant as movies and TV shows can make us out to be.
    Over the summer, I had ten inches taken off and donated. When I returned to school, I found that four of my friends had also decided to give their hair. It was amazing to find that we had all independently and simultaneously decided that it was time to help others.

  11. thats a really moving story and its so true the way society can make you feel so “ugly”, and its amazing that a book can rewire everything the we have been taught since we were born

  12. wow Haddy-la, you donated 18 inches?!?!! thats fool. 7 of my friends have donated within the last 2 months. one of my friends is thinking she mite, but i dont think she will. shes 12 and has never cut her hair in her life. it almost reaches her knees!

    -Lizzy-wa OUT! 😛

  13. =D
    I cut 16 inches of my hair and gave it to “Locks of Love” when I was in 5th grade. I was so proud of myself.

    Wow Scott good job in helping the confidence in girls.
    =]

  14. That’s so sweeeet. Awwwww. I wish I had enough courage to do that.

    Also, I’m reading One For Sorrow. It’s really good so far.

  15. thats so amazing. i donated too, but i want to do more. i wish the world wasnt so focused on how you look, cus it just makes living in this place so hard. cause you never look like your ‘supposed’ to look like. basically, it sucks.

  16. how inspiring!

    I am SO going to donate hair to locks of love… when it grows out. it’s pretty short right now.
    I’ve always wanted to do stuff to help people with cancer and stuff. when I die i want my organs to be donated (that sounds kinda gross).
    i wish there was something i could do right now to help…

  17. wow that is so cool! i wish my writing could hav that effect on people. that girl is pretty great too. honestly i never thought of your books like that. but that is an amazing moral that i guess i just didnt see. WAY TO GO ANNALISA! (and of course u 2 scott-la)

  18. o and of course i would donate to locks of love but i would like to keep SOME of my hair and there isnt much of it.sorry.

  19. oh ya, what times are you gonna be in chicago??? i REALLY want to go see u there but my chances of getting out of school are ZERO and even after school are pretty low… (i live about 2 hours from the city so….)

  20. Scott,

    Your books were amazing when I finished one I made my mom buy me the next one! I ended up finishing the whole trilogyin one week! I got so emotional after what happend in Specials. Why does Tally always blame herself, some times it was Shay’s fault, or Dr. Cable. I had to read the book for a report, and I never ever, ever, wanted to read the book. (It looked really weird. No offense.)I was realy truly glad that I read Uglies though. There is this song by Yellowcard and it’s cald Empty Apartment, and it reminds me of the things that Tally and David did together when they were a couple in Uglies and how Tally changes when she meets Zane. I cry every time I listen to it.

    I loved how you saw the world in a coulpe of years. Who knows we might turn out like that if we’re not careful enough, and more considerate of what we do. I know that since I’ve read the book I look at how the world differently. (Like I rewired my thoughts and opinions.)

    I have some questions though. I know that if authors leave you hanging by a string when the book is done,(Like you did to me and I would know I’ve written two books of my own)that the book was amazing, but why don’t you write one more book (it can be short)explaing what happens with Tally and David when they are in the wild, and waht happens with the rest of the world. It would clear up alot of my questions. Also, what made you want to write Extras? I read the preveiw in Specials, and it didn’t make since.

    I realy hope you could answer my questions (even email it to me)Can’t wait to red the rest of your books!

    Lila-wa

  21. from what i’ve heard, extras sort of is that book. tally and david are supposed to show up at some point possibly, but it’s narrated by a girl from japan called aya fuse, and it takes place a little while after specials ended.
    does that help answerw any of ur questions?
    also, have u read any of scott’s other books? they’re all great, but different from uglies.

    one of the best things is how uglies, peeps and midnighters are all great books, but they’re in almost different styles and about such different stuff.

  22. whoa…moving. very, very, moving.

    think about it, just knowing that you have the power to completely change the way people see themselves (for the better), must feel wonderful.

    congratulations, Scott, and congratulations, Annalisa!

    i donated my hair to locks of love when i was in seventh grade. the woman said it’d be 10 but it ended up being 15. but oh well, its growing out now and i plan to do it again once it’s long enough.

    and after i got it cut, i discovered that my hair is curly! yeah i guess the 15 inches weighed more than i thought…

  23. hey guys…if you go to the locks of love link, you can buy three different locks of love bears. $10 each. 10% of the money goes to locks of love! since my hairs to short to donate, i just bought 10 bears! im gonna give them to my friends!

    -Lizzy-wa OUT! 😛

  24. That girl must have moxie coming out of her ears. I could never do something like that- I’m about the biggest non-risk taker on Earth. Plus, my hair isn’t near long enough. 😛

    Don’t you just love when people ask what the book you’re reading is about?

    So today, I’m sitting in the living room reading the last few pages on The Last Days.
    Dad: What’s that book about? It looks interesting.
    Me: Hmm? Oh, it’s about the zombie apocalypse.
    Dad: What?
    Me: And how we’re all going to be infected by vampiric parasites. Kind of like another Bubonic Plague.
    Dad: *stares*

    It was so fawesome.

  25. Wow. I never think about books like that! Go…everyone!

    Last time I donated my hair, it was @ Relay for Life (which is outside). The lady thought she could do it, but then the wind picked up…The next Monday, everyone thought I was a guy from just seeing my hair, because I had the same cut as all of them! =) It’s not long enough to donate again yet, but maybe I will and just get a buzz cut. I could dye it purple or something!

    Lizzy-wa, you are, like, rich! A hundred dollars worth of teddy bears? Just wondering, wouldn’t it be easier to just donate money directly? No pile of bears, at least.

  26. haha Bethany i went to a Relay for Life too! it was so much fun, i did it w/ my girl scout troop (yes, i’m in 9th grade and still in girl scouts. college applications, people!) and we didn’t sleep until 4:30 a.m…and then had to get up at 5 a.m. it was an awesome experience though, we do it every year.

  27. oh, and because i just NOW remembered to mention it: i changed my name-linky-thingie!

    well my school had a dance this past saturday and i had a really good conversation w/ one of my friends about this one artist (and now he’s gonna bug me till i get her 2nd CD, even though i have 5 songs from it on my iPod), and ever since then i’ve had her songs stuck in my head, so i figured it was time to bid adieu to the goo goo dolls (temporarily)…

    check it out!

  28. hey lila-wa its so awesome to have u joining us. but just one thing that you seemed to hav missed: the book doesnt take place in a couple of years. it takes place like 300 years in the future. anyway like no offense or anything. ROCK ON YALL!!
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  29. That’s so cool! I wish I had her guts. I cut 6 inches off and donated it, but 6 inches isn’t whole lot. I’m going to try to grow my hair out really long and donate it.
    Reading Uglies has really helped my self-esteem. I cried at the end of Specials and I was furious when Zane and Tally were going out. I absolutely love your books.

  30. i have read the whole trilogy twice, and i cry everytime i read specials. why does tally blame herself for zanes death? it wasnt her fault. it wasnt anyones fault. it you were to blame someone, blame dr cable for attacking diego. i hope extras will have the same impact as the other books had (i also cried when i read midnighters blue noon, why did she have to stay in the blue time?) well i really should do my homework

  31. Amy-la, if that happens, count me in!
    and no Bethany-wa, im not rich, but when i find something i like, i empty out my savings acount. for example, i have preordered 4 copies of EXTRAS online, and one at borders. im keeping two, and im not sure what to do with the others. and by the way…what’s wrong with a giant pile of teddy bears? half my room is buried in beanie babies and stuffed animals! woooo! go stuffing!

    -Lizzy-wa OUT! 😛

    ps…WELCOME WELCOME WELCOME LILY-WA!!! please stay! none of the other newbies have shown up since the first couple of days. *sniff sniff*

    -Lizzy-wa OUT! 😛 (again)

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