Sunday, March 27, 2011

I Need To Move To Australia

I was in literary heaven. I admit I have a writer's crush on Markus Zusak. You may be saying, "Wait, is this like the really strange crush thing you have for Kevin Spacey?" which is a WHOLE other story. Anyway, ever since I read The Book Thief it has become apparent that Zusak is my favorite author of all time. And then when I read I Am the Messenger there could be no doubt at all. Lo and behold, my dreams came true when I found this icon was coming to the Provo library. Yes, you heard me right. Provo, got him and I had to go. My friends Cami and Annalisa, who was due to give birth the very next day jumped into a car and hightailed it to an extremely cool location. Who knew Provo had such a happening library and the architecture couldn't be beat. Wait, forget the architecture, the next thing I know an ADORABLE guy walks through the door and 500 of us are in a frenzy of hero worship.

The only things I knew about this man were his words between book covers and his picture on the back flap. Let me tell you, he is even more charming, humble, and amazing then I could have imagined. He signed copies of his books for 500 people and we were 75th on the list and we waited in line for an hour and a half. He spoke with EVERY person for a few minutes and by the time we saw him he was exhausted and chugging down A&W root beer. He drew pictures in everybody's books and I was able to tell him what his words mean to me, how they are living things, and he told me how much that means to hear that.

He gave the most awesome talk before he read an expert from The Book Thief. He says he writes a story so that people will believe him. He said he is the owner of the story because of the small details only he can tell. He says the reader will have a reaction when something unusual happens. He said has edited his pieces upwards of 150-200 times. He said that in his writing he doesn't posses a lot of imagination, just a lot of problems and it is through trying to solve those problems that his stories take flight. He said in his writing of The Book Thief that he wanted to write a book that meant something to him, but by the end he had written a book that meant everything to him. He also talked about how accessing creativity is like waiting for a wild animal to come out of its hole. If you try and put your hand in you will get bitten.

I know this is going to sound make me sound like the nerd that I am, but it was one of the greatest days of my life. I love that I got to meet and talk to one of the people who has not only greatly impacted my life as a reader, but as a writer and after meeting him, as a human being as well. Markus Zusak = class act.