This morning, after dropping Wild Thing and Moose at camp, I stopped by the library to pick up an audiobook of Empire Falls, due for the July 2008 book club. The book, while well written, is tedious to read because of huge sections of backstory are printed in italics. I figured I could make a lot of progress listening to the book as I drive back and forth to Miami tomorrow and again on Sunday. While I’m down in Miami tomorrow, I’m going to have lunch with my very best friend, MB Walker, before I have to pick up Wizard. At the library, I sat down for a few minutes to take advantage of the wireless network and research some restaurants.
At that moment, my dear friend, Sprite, walked in. She chided me about using the library to surf the Internet instead of reading books. I showed her my 17-cassette version of Empire Falls, and she was pleased. Since we hadn’t seen each other in a while, I suggested we go up the street for a cup of coffee. Sprite readily agreed. We spent a wonderful hour catching up on our family’s lives and summer plans. I hated to say goodbye, but she had to tutor a student, and I had to get to the grocery store.
As we were getting into our cars, Sprite popped up and said, “Oh! I’ve been reading your blog! I loved that post about the treasure hunt for Wizard’s birthday.”
I was surprised. “You’ve been reading? I didn’t know.”
“Yes,” she replied. “I lurk. Reading your blog feels like I’m invading your privacy, but I can’t help myself. You write so well.”
“No, really! You’re a great writer. I can’t tell you how many times you’ve pulled me right into your narrative, laughing or crying all the way.”
“Thank you. That’s high praise.”
Wow. I’m completely flattered. A brilliant, impressively-credentialed master of prose and narrative thinks I’m a good writer. Pure validation.
“. . . I’ve wanted more than anything to have your respect. The first time I didn’t feel it, but this time I feel it, and I can’t deny the fact that you like me, right now, you like me!”
Sally Field, Best Actress for “Places in the Heart,” after having won in 1980 for “Norma Rae,” (1985)
Thank you, Sprite, from the bottom of my dust-encrusted keyboard … heart.