Listening to an inspiring author

When I saw this topic, one author immediately came to mind. My local library has an author program and has been able to invite many well-known authors to our small, rural town. Through that program, I have the likes of Billy Collins, Nikki Giovanni, Jim Heynen, Laura Kasichke, Gail Gaymer Martin and many more. Most of the time, I barely managed to stammer ‘hello.’

However the author that came to mind was one that I heard speak while I was in college. I had read one of his books in high school and it was probably the first time that individual words and phrases stuck out to me. I didn’t get to meet him personally, but sat in the fieldhouse on horridly uncomfortable bleachers riveted as he spoke about what it meant to write and be a writer.

At the time I heard this, I was an English major and wasn’t sure what I would do with that. I had a year or so until I graduated. Writing novels would be a dream career, but I wasn’t sure I had anything new to say or the talent to do it. I wasn’t dark and brooding. I didn’t ponder metaphors in my free time. I didn’t discuss  how cigarettes mirrored modern life over coffee in dingy coffee houses in suspect parts of town. How could I be a writer?  Writing was something that I would love to do, but had no idea how to do about it.

I don’t remember a lot of what he said, but one sentence stayed with me:

If you want to write, write.

Perhaps, that simple admonishment has been my motivation.

Since then I have read more of his books and his autobiography. He was a fascinating man, able to describe a horrid experience so that another generation does not repeat the atrocities.

His name was Elie Wiesel.

May he rest in peace.

About Joselyn

SAHM writing romance with at a case of the giggles. Former librarian. Avid reader. Runner.
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4 Responses to Listening to an inspiring author

  1. jeff7salter says:

    you don’t ponder metaphors in your spare time?
    You don’t live in a cold-water flat, up three flights of stairs, in some dingy run-down neighborhood and eat cat food in your stained t-shirt?
    LOL — I’ve been fascinated by the imagery associated with novelists and playwrights — not to mention newspaper folks of the 1930s — over the years.

    As for Elie Wiesel — I certainly respect and admire all he went through and all his efforts. I’ve never read one of his books, but I have read articles about him and interviews with him. Without the unflagging efforts of him and many others like him, our newer generations would have so little connection with the Holocaust that it could easily be forgotten. That must never happen.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Joselyn says:

      If you get a chance, read Night. It’s only about a hundred pages. I also enjoyed his autobiography All Rivers Run to the Sea. He talks about his life after the war and trying to find a place.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This is such an appropriate time for a tribute to him,Joselyn. I have, of course, seen him talk many times on TV but never read his works. Now I a curious.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Patricia Kiyono says:

    Night was required reading in one of my English classes. How lucky you are to have heard him speak!

    Liked by 1 person

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