1. What inspired you to write about what you went through in high school?
I really wanted people, especially teenagers with anxiety, to know they're not alone. And getting my story out there is kind of liberating - like, hey, this is me. Like me or not. I spent so much of my life worrying and I'm just trying to get past that now. Writing this book has been really therapeutic and I hope people can connect to it and feel a little less alone. That's why I wrote it.
2. Is there a specific message you hope readers of RAE will take away with them?
I just hope readers can connect with it. Having even one person tell me they can relate to it - whether it's the anxiety or the self-doubt or the eating problems or the family issues - is enough to make it worth writing.
3. What is the best advice you can give to students suffering from anxiety/social phobia?
Accept it; that's all you can really do. And don't let it rule your life. There will be times when you want to curl in a ball and cry, and that's okay. But just don't let it control you.
4. Is there a certain person you look up to that has inspired you in any way?
Laurie Halse Anderson, as a writer. Because she makes words count. Makes them sing. And one day, I want to do that.
5. If you could travel to any place in the world, where would it be and why?
Can I just give a shady, general answer? I take that as a yes?
Thanks so much, Chelsea!
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