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Judy Blume’s books are iconic and beloved and because of this, she’s held her work close. But 50 years after publishing one of her most popular novels, Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret., Blume reveals that she’s ready to hand it over to Hollywood.
“Margaret is going to be the first one, Margaret is going to be a movie,” Blume says on the 2020 Makers Conference stage. “I don’t know if it is going to work, if it’s going to please you, I have no idea. But it’s exciting. I think after 50 years I was ready to let go.”
The book about a young girl who set out to learn more about puberty and explore sexuality was met with criticism and even anger at the time that it was published. “They wanted this banned and off the shelves. They believed puberty was a dirty word,” Blume says. But the author explains that shock value wasn’t her intent.
“I wanted to show sexuality with responsibility. I wanted girls to have a good time, I was a girl,” she went on. “I didn’t set out to do anything except tell stories as well as I could.”
Faced with both rejection and much success as a result of her work, Blume is sure that writing has changed her life. “I was shy, I was fearful, but when it came to writing, somehow I became fearless,” she says. “And that, of course, has changed my life.”
Now, she is ready to move on from it. “I’m done. 50 years of writing,” she says. But after writing her final work, which she felt “born to write,” the author, who turns 82 on Wednesday, is ready for her next adventure.
“How lucky for me that suddenly I have a bookstore. Some reason to get up every day and to be so excited and to have a new career and to be learning new things,” Blume said. “That’s what’s important, that you never stop, that you’re never too old to learn or to start something new.”
Follow the 2020 Makers Conference at Makers.com.