The Book

If as an adult, you could send a letter to your younger self, what words of guidance, comfort, advice or other message would you put in it?

A few years ago I was shown a heartbreaking letter that my partner was given by a troubled classmate when they were both teenagers. It made me want to send a reply back in time to say: "You're just fine." But of course, unless you have that time travel mailbox, that's impossible.

Instead, the 'Dear Me' letter was born. Initially as a feature in GT magazine in the UK, which I was then editing, and then a UK version of the book in 2009, with a foreword by Elton John.

Now in 2011, there is an all-new version featuring 75 new letter writers including JK Rowling, Hugh Jackman, James Franco, Kathleen Turner, Graydon Carter, Stephen King, Alice Cooper and Jodi Picoult, who in addressing their younger selves, have intimately opened their hearts to the page – and given us beautiful pictures of their younger selves. JK Rowling has written the foreword.

In America the book is called Dear Me, A Letter To My Sixteen-Year-Old Self and in the UK it's called Dear Me, More Letters To My Sixteen-Year-Old Self (because it follows the 2009 version there).

Dear Me affords an intimate glimpse into the backgrounds and emotional make up of a fabulous group of people who loom so large in our culture, while short- circuiting the usual interview process. It's a treasure trove of emotion, wisdom, insight, tears, silliness and advice.

Joseph Galliano
Editor: Dear Me, A Letter To My Sixteen-Year-Old Self

Joseph Galliano

Is a freelance writer and editor whose work has appeared in The Times and Guardian and various magazines internationally.

He is the former editor of GT magazine in the UK and the proud father of the Dear Me, A Letter To My Sixteen-Year-Old Self series. He lives in London.

A portion of the profits made by this book will be donated by the author to Doctors without borders.