Select Annotations from Red, White & Royal Blue- Entry 6

to the new year!

Happy New Year’s, ya’ll!! I hope the holidays have been treating you well, and that you’re excited to jump into 2020. My resolution is the same as always: READ ALL THE BOOKS!

I am SO excited about this week’s post, since the New Year’s Eve party is one of the best chapters in the whole book, and scene of Henry and Alex’s first kiss! Read on for Casey’s behind-the-scenes-notes!

Entry 6!

-Pg 96:

“Remember when Nora and I were both out of the country for a week, and you almost got a tattoo?”

It would have been the outline of Texas (undecided on chest or arm).

-Pg. 97:

“Alex smiles despite himself and texts Henry.
ATTN: will be wearing a burgundy velvet suit tonight. please do not attempt to steal my shine. you will fail and i will be embarrassed for you.

Henry texts back seconds later.
Wouldn’t dream of it.”

SO many of Alex’s interactions with Henry can be interpreted as flirting–part subconscious crush & part just Alex’s personality–so of course poor Henry is getting mixed signals. 

-Pg. 100:

Alex ducks out of an aggressive come-on by a girl from the new Spider-Man movies and into a haphazard conga line, and Henry actually seems to have fun.”

This is NOT a Zendaya diss! She hadn’t been cast yet when I wrote this! If Zendaya kills me DO NOT prosecute her!

-Pg. 101:

Shut up,” Alex yells, cutting off whatever Henry was saying, “shut your dumb face, this is my shit!” He throws his hands up in the air as Henry stares at him blankly, and around them, people start cheering too, hundreds of shoulders shimmying to the shouty, Lil Jon-flavored nostalgia of ‘Get Low'”

I had to ask a Gen Z person is they were still playing this song at dances when Alex was in middle school–they were!

-Pg. 102:

“To one side, a podcast producer and that guy from Stranger Things are hitting the Kid ‘n Play”

Steve Harrington

-Pg. 103:

“Henry’s willingness to dance is directly proportionate to his proximity to Alex’s hands, and the amount of giddy warmth bubbling under Alex’s skin is directly proportionate to the cut of Henry’s mouth when he watches him with Nora. It’s an equation he is not nearly sober enough to parse.”


-Pg. 103:

“Nora’s mouth is warm and tastes horrifying, like peach schnapps, and she bites his lip and messes up his hair for good measure.

When he opens his eyes, Henry’s looking back at him, expression unreadable.”


-Pg. 104:

“When he turns, the moonlight catches on him, and his face looks softened in half shadows, inviting in a way Alex can’t quite work out.”

You’re so very, very stupid, Alex. 

-Pg. 105:

“Looking for Orion,” Henry says.

One of the first Henry lines I ever wrote.

-Pg. 106:

“These things–big evens, letting other people feed on his own energy–are rarely too much for Alex.”

Very early indication of where Alex’s character development is going–learning through Henry how to translate his generous ideals into his personal relationships. 

Pg. 108:

This kiss was the first scene I wrote in the entire book! It changed a lot, but this was always how their first kiss happened. 


I hope you all have a happy and safe New Year’s Eve! I’ll be staying home with the pugs and my husband watching Disney movies, because we are Old and do not like to go out or drive on this night anymore.

I’ll catch you guys in 2020–thanks for another great year!

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