Tonight, Leigh and I had the honor of meeting an artist. I’m sure I had met one before, but tonight there was no doubt. Jonathan Safran Foer (an author I’ve spoke of before on this blog) visited Bookpeople in Austin tonight. He answered questions about his works and signed books. Here’s a photo of Myself, Leigh, and JSF:
He looks rather unhappy in that picture, but I can assure you he was a very gracious and funny person. See:
“I don’t think people go to meet books. I think that books go to meet people and they meet somewhere in the middle.”
“Writing for me is like walking down a dark hall. You can’t see anything and you have to find your way by touch. Then you get to the end of the hall and switch the light on and turn around and find the walls covered with the pages of your book.”
The last question of the evening was asked by a girl of about ten or twelve. She asked if he regretted anything about being a writer. JSF thought for a few moments then asked her if she ever regretted being honest, because he said being a writer was very much like being honest. It was a lot of work, but in the end something to be very proud of.
He was a classy guy. I still can’t believe that someone my age can write with the beauty and honesty that comprises JSF’s work.
His first book is Everything is Illuminated and his newly released book is Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Do yourself a favor and buy them. Very rarely will a book make me cry. That’s something that almost never happens, but I think I may have shed more tears reading Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close than any other work I have ever read. And amazingly the end still felt hopeful.
My friend Jim attended as well, and as soon as he sends me his pictures, I’ll post them too.
Special thanks to my beautiful fiance for taking the photo of JSF smiling.