Wednesday, November 07, 2007

A Perfect Writer's Day

Wednesday evening. My day began with an autumn bouquet delivered to my door and it is ending with me wrapped in my favorite blanket sipping a Starbucks chai tea latte. In between, I met two wonderful writers and heard the voice of Ray Bradbury himself. You could say this was a good day.

I had recently rediscovered Ray's magic and so was very excited to be invited by John McNally (a fantastic, humorous storyteller in his own right) to come to Wake Forest to hear Sam Weller talk about his book THE BRADBURY CHRONICLES: the Life of Ray Bradbury. It is an authorized biography which I highly recommend if you want to know the real man behind the tales. As a bonus, they had arranged a live teleconference with Mr. Bradbury himself. As these technology things sometimes go, the teleconferencing equipment wasn't working, so we only got to hear something to the effect of "I can't hear you, call back on another phone."

I wish I could remember Ray Bradbury's exact words. I wish I could remember the particular tone of his voice, but I can't. I can only remember the feeling of having this surreal moment--a moment of reality animating a man that I have never thought of as a regular man...a man who puts on shoes, sleeps or eats breakfast just like the rest of us. Any image of him I have ever had involved typewriters and furrowed brows and mad pounding of keys. But, now I have heard his voice, he is human. Which makes his stories all the more extraordinary.

Sam told stories and answered questions. I am too much of an introvert to ask questions, but I had a good time listening to his experiences and his answers to other's questions about his book and his time with Ray.

One thing that I loved about this book was Sam said he wanted to not just recount details of Ray Bradbury's life, but to give some insight into where such a larger-than-life imagination comes from. Is it nature or nurture? After reading his story, I'd have to stick with nature nurtured by certain environmental influences. Like his wonderfully creative aunt or the magician who touched him with his wand and the words "live forever."

I have no doubt that he will.


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a perfect day! Yay!

Shawn said...

Gosh, good for you!! That's awesome. Flowers, and some time away from the beasts (I mean twins). Sounds wonderful! Hopefully you found your muse among all of it, including the Chai.

icanseeclearlynow said...

hi there. new to your blog and hope you don't mind my chiming in. gosh! i've always thought ray bradbury a creative genius. i was introduced to his work in high school and i never forgot his name.

LOVED your poem for sylvia plath in the earlier post.



Gary said...

Wish I could have been there. Kudos.

*mental note to add to anticipation list*

bella said...

Wow. what a perfect day indeed.
How extraordinary to see the man behind the curtain, to see the humanity and have it not take anything away but rather increase the magic.

Shannon said...

I wish you were all there, too!
And welcome, Maria!

Shelli said...

Those kind of events are always thrilling. Glad you got to go!

Gary said...

Wow. I feel terrible. All of you were talking about it being a great day because of Bradbury and the Weller fellow (say that three times real fast, I dare ya).

I was thinking it'd be great for all the young, hot academic types there or floating about!

Doesn't anyone care about real art, anymore? I'm ashamed of you all, I have to admit it.


(What?! What do you expect from an overly single fellow?)

Shannon said...

Shameless, G- are you getting any writing done with all that art appreciation?

Anonymous said...

Sign me up.