Me: Guess what! Guess what!
Aerin: Something’s wrong.
Me: No! Nothing’s wrong.
Aerin: There’s definitely something wrong. You’re using too many exclamation points.
Me: Academy 7 is an Oregon Book Award finalist!
Aerin: A finalist?
Aerin: You mean we didn’t really win before?
Me: Yes, you won the Spirit of Oregon Award by the Oregon Council of Teachers of English. This is the Oregon Book Award by the Oregon Institute of Literary Arts. And you and Dane are nominated for this one as well!
(Dane mutters something from a distance).
Aerin: He says he thought we were cut from the list of nominees last fall. Didn’t you see the list of finalists on the Literary Arts table at Wordstock? And we were not on it?
Me: Apparently that was last year’s list of finalists.
Aerin: Our book came out in May 2009.
Me: I know, but the Oregon Institute of Literary Arts had this weird delay in their schedule last year.
Aerin: So you’re saying we are really finalists?
Me: Yes, along with Scott William Carter for The Last Great Getaway of the Water Balloon Boys.
Aerin: Nice title.
Me: And Kerry Cohen Hoffman for It’s Not You, It’s Me. And L.K. Madigan for Flash Burnout.
Aerin: She’s the one you presented with at Wordstock. She’s very nice.
Me: Yes! And Emily Whitman, who I presented with at the YA Extravaganza last spring, was also nominated for Radiant Darkness.
Aerin: That’s the book you read last fall, the one where the three-headed dog guarding the river Styx bounds like a giant puppy?
Me: Yes. I enjoyed that a lot!
(More distant muttering).
Aerin: Dane’s concerned.
Me: About what? This is awesome!
Aerin: About the number of exclamation points.