Friday, March 30, 2012

My Hero!

On Tuesday night, I did one of the funnest things I’ve gotten to do in a long time.  I got to meet one of my biggest heroes.  I got to see Anne Lamott in real life.

She did a reading and book signing at the Tattered Cover here in Denver and my big sis carved out some time to go with me. 

Anne is such a big deal that she won’t sign personal notes to anyone on their books; she’ll only sign her name.  I told Cori that maybe someday she’ll be such a great writer that she will only have to sign her name, too.  She said the same thing to me, but I only want to write one book, so I’m sure I’ll have to sign personal notes in that one.  That’s ok.

Annie was delightful.  She was smaller than I expected her to be.  She had a hilarious sense of humor.  She was scatterbrained, and kept switching from topic to topic rapid-fire.  She was obsessed with Twitter.

I have spent the last few days processing the time that I had and the talk that she gave.  She often talks about being disciplined to sit down and write every day.  Just get your butt in the chair and write.  She said that no one cares if you write or not.  It only matters to you.  I thought that was great, and extremely useful.  She says not to worry about the quality of your work at first, she’s famous for her quote from her book, Bird by Bird, about writing shitty first drafts.  But, part of me felt so overwhelmed by her, as well, that I can never dream to write like she can, so I have not written at all since Tuesday night (until this, I suppose).  I have not put my butt in my chair and written any shitty first drafts.  I’ll get over it soon.

In the end, we got to go up and meet her, and I got to tell her that as a widow, none of the usual books for grief had been useful to me, even C.S. Lewis, but hers (Traveling Mercies) had been the only one that I had been able to get through, and that it was meaningful to me.  I thanked her.  She said she was sorry for my loss, and thanked me.

It was such a fun night.  I hope that all of you get to meet your heroes someday!

After the photo was snapped, Anne asked, "Is it cute?"  I think it is, but Cori and I both have punky haircuts these days, and in 20 years we'll look at this photo and say, "What were we thinking?"


  1. Dear Noel, I found your blog through your sister. I knew your brother-in-law in high school. I am compelled to tell you that your story has made a difference in my life. I can see that life has been hard on you, but reading about your enduring hope...has given me some when I needed it. Keep writing. You and Cory both have a gift.
    Sincerely, Kari

  2. Oh, Kari, thank you so much for telling me that! I'm so glad.