When I was a kid, I lived and breathed books. I suspect a lot of us were like that, among my faithful blog-gobblers. I consumed books by shelves and by authors, by topic and genre. Over time, I came to feel like certain authors were my friends. I spent a lot of time in their heads, in their worlds. It’s an illusion, I know, but I think we often come away from reading books feeling a real connection to the author, that they somehow understand us the way no one else ever will.
So, part of this connecting for me was having conversations in my head with these authors. Anne McCaffrey and I talked on and on about her stories. I’d point out little inconsistencies and make suggestions. She, of course, found me brilliant. I fantasized about how we would someday meet, how I’d show up at DragonHollow, help her feed her horses and we’d become instant friends.
This was before I understood the concept of stalking.
Now that I understand that it’s not the best idea to hunt down the writers I love and tell them how to make their amazing books even better, I’ve discovered the back door route: become a writer!
The last several weeks I’ve been privileged to read new books from the fabulous Marcella Burnard and Laura Bickle. As I was reading – and making notes on how to strengthen here and there – I took delight in seeing the little inside jokes from our conversations come out. And here would be the knotty plot problem we’d tossed around in theory and there would be fleeting evidence of my fingerprints – a concept I’d suggested.
And I realized, these authors are totally my friends.
It’s every bit as wonderful as I thought it could be, too.
Does anyone have Anne McCaffrey’s phone number?