In a little intro to How NOT to Spend Your Senior Year, Cameron talks about what is and isn't true in her book. In that spirit, I thought I'd clue you in on a few things that are and aren't true in THE BOYS NEXT DOOR.
I grew up on a beautiful lake in Alabama, but there is no Crappie Festival on Lake Martin. There is, however, an Interstate Mullet Toss at the Flora-Bama Lounge down at the beach. People try to throw a mullet across the Alabama/Florida state line. I have never been to the Interstate Mullet Toss myself. My first job after college was as a copyeditor for the Montgomery newspaper. My boss was a very low-key person, so I was surprised when she came in looking sort of bedraggled one day. In fact, she looked like someone who had spent the weekend in the sun, throwing fish across the state line. I've been waiting to put the Interstate Mullet Toss in a book ever since.
The town where I grew up also had a huge cotton mill with an outlet store where you could get all sorts of designs put on T-shirts. Hunting and fishing are important activities in this town, so the store had lots of deer designs and fish designs. They offered a picture of a fish that said "Bass!" and a picture of a fish that said "Catfish!" and a picture of a fish that said "Crappie!" Well, that's just funny. I gave my best friend a crappie T-shirt for her birthday, and after we graduated from high school she wore it around Boston University.
The bryozoa is 100% real and I have accidentally touched it more times than I can count. *shudder* (The link goes to a Wikipedia article that I'm considering updating because it's incomplete. It does not contain the terms slimy or ugh.)