'Two Sense: Practical Wisdom for New Adults' Guides New Grads
Jillian Moore, author of 'Two Sense: Practical Wisdom for New Adults,' shows off her book alongside daughter Lilah.
Photo courtesy of Jillian Moore
Two Sense: Practical Wisdom for New Adults is a gift book for recent graduates which helps them navigate the sticky financial and social situations that often crop up in the first years of independent living. It's short and amusing and chock-full of practical advice new adults can start applying immediately. It's written by local authors Jillian Moore and Tricia Phillips.
Seattle's Child: Jillian, what was the inspiration for this book?
Jillian Moore: Last year the first wave of kids I had known since they were drool monsters began to graduate from high school. I found myself at the ceremonies wishing I had something more than fifty bucks and a wilted carnation to offer them. I was rooting for them, but worried they were unprepared to deal with life's little practicalities. I didn't want them to have to flounder through the first years of adulthood the way I did.
How did you decide on the topics to cover? Was any of it from personal experience--mistakes that you or Tricia made yourselves?
ALL of the topics in the books come from our experience and blisteringly sharp hindsight. For instance - I was raised by parents who loved me and protected me, however somehow never explained how to make a budget or what it means to sign a rental lease. When I got a bill I couldn't pay my response was generally to ignore it and hope it would magically evaporate. It almost felt like bullying when I was pursued for payment by collection agencies. No one told me I could control and negotiate a lot of these things with a little up front action.
What is different about sending kids into adulthood today versus when you were in their shoes?
Many of the topics we address in the book are specific to modern life. Things like, "how not to get fired because of what you post on the internet" - that simply wasn't a thing when we were new adults. We could be crass and opinionated within our social circles without major repercussions. But kids today, or heck, anyone today, has to understand that their internet persona is something employers can and do look at when considering hiring a person. This can be career limiting unless you decide up front to limit who has access to the various windows into your life. They have to start thinking big picture much earlier than we ever did.
We also describe a lot of social quandaries that remain the same - things like, "what to do if a friend wants to borrow money", or even, "what to do if someone asks you to bail them out of jail." Young adults place a high premium on loyalty to friends and it's important to play out these scenarios so that they can see there are ways of being supportive and kind without putting themselves in a rough financial spot.
Which chapter or topic is your favorite and why?
A topic that I go back to again and again is "How to deal with a situation in which you have broken/stained/ruined someone else's property". We have all been there and it is mortifying. Getting the courage to admit what was probably an accident is incredibly difficult but entirely necessary. We go through the different reactions people might have and give new adults an idea of how they can mitigate the damage, both to the property and the relationship. We try to help them find the sweet spot between making it up to a person and forgiving themselves for what was essentially an accident.
The book is getting such a great response from experienced adults and graduates. Why do you think it is resonating so well?
I think seasoned adults can open any page and see themselves in the scenarios described and find a lot of humor in them. They WISH they had known that investing the same amount dollars at 25 vs. 35 could net them more than double the return as described in "The magic of compound interest". I've had several adult friends read the book and say, "Umm, I need the information in this book NOW. At age 37."
New adults seem to like it because it's written in a voice that they can relate to, and which doesn't talk down to them. Tricia and I both remember early adulthood vividly and with great compassion for our 18-25 year old selves. We try to give the straight story in a way that acknowledges the feelings that may come up in stressful situations, the various approaches, pros and cons, and then in the end, we reassure them that everything is going to be fine, even when they DO make mistakes--because everybody does. Its part of growing up.
Also, it's short. We figured planting the seed of how to think through a tough situation is more important than turning them off with agonizing detail.
How can we get our hands on this book?
Two Sense: Practical Wisdom for New Adults is available on Amazon.com for $11.99. There is a place inside the front cover for the gifter to offer their own "two cents" as well. We all have wisdom to impart. For multiple copies at a discount, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you have plans for any other Two Sense books?
Tricia and I plan to create a Two Sense empire. Our next offering will be a gift book for baby showers with funny and practical advice around the last months of pregnancy and the first months of caring for your new human. Coming in late 2016. Like our Facebook page to get product updates.