Friday, 2 March 2012
The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of
I thumbed through the pages, so happy that Peter and Jonah and Etta have found a home in such a perfectly realised setting.
I checked the acknowledgements, hoping that I hadn't left anyone out.
I hadn't, but the list of names I'd included was far too short. When you've been trying to achieve something for as long I have, there are hundreds of people who could have been thanked.
There are the writers and speakers I met years ago at writing conferences and workshops who offered encouragement and praise, who made me feel (momentarily, at least) as if I actually had some ability.
There are the dozens of friends who listened to me pitch story ideas that would never get off the ground, or whine about my latest rejection, and never--not once--rolled their eyes or glanced at their watches.
There's that obnoxious American tourist in Campo Santa Margherita in Venice who, in 2006, made me so angry that I started writing again after a five-year block. After I gave him a glorious (to me, anyway) grappa- and spritz- fuelled tongue lashing, he threatened me with gangsterish reprisals: "You picked the wrong town, man."
Well, turns out I hadn't. This was not Palermo or Napoli. And being in that town, in that square, at that time, unleashed something far more powerful than any Venetian vendetta--it re-ignited my desire to write. And for that, sexist loud-mouthed numpty in a fake CBGBs T-shirt, I offer a hearty "Molte grazie."
And so, it all comes together--friends and strangers, dreams and hard work, imagination and life experiences, all combining to create a moment that is wonderful and real.
Thank you--everyone and everything.