Wednesday, July 22, 2009

My Trip To See Margo Lanagan Was Meant To Be

I drove down to a library about forty minutes from here last night to hear Margo Lanagan speak. (Look! She has a blog! I will have to read it for a while.) I am halfway through Tender Morsels and liking it a great deal. I just happened to have picked it up from the library before I heard she was going to be speaking nearby. I know when I'm being sent a message from the...whatever...and I definitely pay attention.

As I left home last night to head toward the coast, a family member said, "Hope you'll be able to understand her," since he was aware that Lanagan is from Australia. I felt that she sounded far more like Emma Thompson than Crocodile Dundee. I brought my camera just in case I got the nerve to take pictures. I didn't. Particularly since I couldn't have done it in a subtle way, since there were only twelve of us (counting the librarian) in the audience.

I was, and continue to be, appalled. This woman is an internationally known award-winning author and justifiably so. What the hell was going on in Groton last night? Was the fleet coming in or something? (That's a Connecticut joke because we all know the sub base is down there.) I've spoken to crowds so small I would have been grateful if they'd reached a dozen. I usually speak to crowds so small I would be grateful if they reached a dozen. But this was Margo Lanagan, who just had a Printz Honor Book talked up at the ALA Conference! There was a dessert reception and you had to pay for tickets and everything!

Okay, they only had cookies and lemonade at the Groton Library...but it was free!

It's going to take me a while to get over this.

Anyway, as a general rule, I enjoy hearing authors speak, but I don't care to listen to readings. I need to see the printed word before me. (I am definitely a visual learner--I have to take notes after taekwondo class so I can read them later in order to retain anything about what just happened.) But Lanagan's readings last night made me want to read Black Juice.

Black Juice is a book of short stories, and you know that I tend to dwell on short stories.

Training Report: Still more on the 365 Story Project! And I updated my Amazon blog for the first time in a month, since there is now a remote chance that some reader will find it.

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