Monday, August 31, 2009

Name dropping

Jaye is a friend of my Aunt Anne's and plays the organ at the church where my family attends. She has fallen in love with my book, but mostly because she "knows the author's family." She drops my name into conversations everywhere she goes, offering to loan people Aunt Anne's book instead of returning it to her.

Last night Mom called to tell me what happened at church.

Jaye was talking to some woman named Ann about my book, and about me. She button-holed the woman in a pew near the door and went on and on about how good the book was (not bad news for me) and what all I do (medical transcriptionist, artist, author, columnist, editor, author and critiquing manuscripts). The woman was not impressed and that set Mom off. "She's an old sour puss," Mom complained. "She doesn't like anything or anyone."

I got a flash of Mikey who hated everything, but loved Life cereal.

Mom railed against the old woman and called her a sour puss several times, going on and on about how Jaye drops my name every chance she gets. I'm glad I don't live there.

When I talked to my Aunt Anne last night, she told me much the same thing, except for the "old sour puss" and that Jaye still had not returned her copy of my novel. She is fit to be tied and believes that Jaye has left the book in Texas when she was there for two weeks.

I certainly never expected to be the center of a tempest in a teapot, although I have found myself in the eye of such storms.

I told my aunt that I would sign a copy of the book and send it to her. "That will really make Jaye jealous," she said. I had never heard that tone in her voice before, the unholy gleeful tone of having the upper hand.

Mom has called nearly every day to give me an update on where she is in the book and where the errors are. She at least likes the little airplanes centered in the space between paragraph breaks, so that at least is something.

I had to go to Mountain Mama's for some things and stopped at the deli to see my favorite counter person. She just had to tell me my novel passed her "time test." The question must have been obvious because she went on to explain. She read the book about a month ago and she keeps reflecting on the characters and some of the scenes, giggling at jokes or antics and seeing more layers and textures she missed the first time around. "When the characters and story keep coming back to me after I've read a book, that passes the time test. It's a really wonderful book and I enjoyed it so much."

My cousins and some of my friends drop my name and I can only imagine that the effect is something like dropping a grain of sand in Lake Titicaca, but at least they enjoy being able to say the know a published author. Even a grain of sand creates ripples that expand outward.

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