Surreptitiously photograph author Elizabeth Strout at the Wortham
Document hour I spend wandering the Houston downtown tunnels in search of my car
I decide to drive into Houston after a long day at work last Monday to hear author Elizabeth Strout read from her new book, The Burgess Boys. I am only a third of the way through the book (and I, frankly, am considering calling a halt to the whole read....it just isn't as good as Olive Kitteridge, I think) but I'd bought a ticket, so what-the-hey.
Part of the appeal is that Strout will be interviewed after the reading by Houston author Katherine Center. I am curious about her, too.
What do I come away with?
1. Strout is a self-taught writer. "I read and I wrote. I read and I wrote. I read and I wrote."
2. Strout is disorganized. But seems to help her write. "I like a mess. I've always liked a mess."
3. Strout likes happily-ever-afters. "I consider myself a very happy ender. And its something I’ve worried about, that maybe I have cheapened my work. But I’ve realized it’s OK because it’s not false. The endings come organically; I don’t just stick a happy ending on. As much as I see the darkness in life, I’m a real believer in (life)."*
4. An HBO four-part mini-series of Olive Kitteridge is in development.
5. And, finally, even if I park my car in my own garage, I will have trouble finding it. I take three photos of where I park, but, nevertheless spend an hour wandering the Houston downtown tunnels in search of my car.
P.S. I did find my car. It's good to know there are some lovely garage attendants who will oh-so-kindly drive you around (and around...and around) the garage until you locate your vehicle.
P.P.S. I did finish The Burgess Boys. Happily. No, not quite as amazing as Olive, but pretty close.
What is the Sunday Salon? Imagine some university library's vast reading room. It's filled with people--students and faculty and strangers who've wandered in. They're seated at great oaken desks, books piled all around them,and they're all feverishly reading and jotting notes in their leather-bound journals as they go. Later they'll mill around the open dictionaries and compare their thoughts on the afternoon's literary intake....
That's what happens at the Sunday Salon, except it's all virtual. Every Sunday the bloggers participating in that week's Salon get together--at their separate desks, in their own particular time zones--and read. And blog about their reading. And comment on one another's blogs. Think of it as an informal, weekly, mini read-a-thon, an excuse to put aside one's earthly responsibilities and fall into a good book. Click here to join the Salon.