Sunday, March 15, 2009

Best. Day. Ever.


I actually got to meet one of my very favorite authors. I'm a sucker for Jodi Picoult books. All of 'em. Jodi is currently on tour promoting her new book, "Handle With Care", which is about a little girl who is born with osteogenesis imperfecta (a defect that causes brittle bones). I, yes, I, humble reader from Chicago, had the opportunity to meet her today!

Jodi is really inspiring! She's one of those women that is so self-assured, so brave, so strong, and so likeable that you can't help but think: "I wanna be just like her when I grow up"! She also seems to have a great sense of humor! She opened the 20 minute reading by saying "I'm sorry for those of you who can't see me. But if you can't see me, I'm six feet tall, very skinny and blonde." She was prompted by what appeared to be a super-fan to tell a very funny story about one of her earlier nights on tour that involved a rat in her hotel room. :) Nice to know stuff like that even happens to famous authors, isn't it?

She seems like she is so down to earth! She has a very pleasant voice, not really high, but not low and throaty. Although her voice may be diffent from normal, because she had a terrible cold. Her 20 minute reading was punctuated by bursts of coughing, which she quelled by sipping a hot tea. I caught a glimpse of a note that was paper-clipped to one of the first pages in her copy of "Handle With Care", presumably written by her husband, that said "Jodi, I love you". :) How sweet that she takes a bit of home with her while she's on tour! She was also very cute! She was wearing a great outfit of jeans, a black floral top with a black jacket over it, and friendship bracelets on her left arm. I never knew this about her, but in her former life she was an 8th grade English teacher! I really admire her ability to bring the issues that we are facing to light in a non-partisan way that grabs your attention. She presents all sides of an arguement or issue, and enables you to empathize with characters you would never identify with in other circumstances. She said today that when she wrote "Keeping Faith" one of her goals was to offend all religions equally. :) I know she was kidding, but I actually really admire that. You'll never know, from reading one of her books, who's side she's on.

During the Q & A session, a couple of interesting topics came up. One of her earlier novels (and one of my favorites), "My Sister's Keeper" is going to be coming out on the BIG screen soon, and one of the audience members asked her about the rumor that an alternate ending was given to the screenplay. Jodi confirmed this: "I wrote the book with a certain message in mind, and when you change the ending, you change the message a little." Later she ended the topic by confirming that she had made peace with the ending, and that we should all go see the movie, but: "The movie is never as good as the book!" :) You go, Jodi!

A few of my favorite quotes from the Q & A:

When asked how she chooses the topics of her books: "They are the issues that keep me up at night. There is no shortage of controversial issues to write about."

When asked for advice for aspiring writers: "Carve out some time every day. Even if it's only 20 minutes. Also, take a writing workshop." She also suggested that even if you start a story and think it's no good, to finish it out to the end.

I walked out of the signing today soooo excited to have had the opportunity to meet such an outstanding and thoughtful writer. I had the added bonus of spending ALL day with two of my girlfriends, Jenn and Courtney, who got there with me at 9:30 am to get in line. :) Here we are with our books, and here's the picture I got to take with Jodi (NOTE THE BOOKWORM ON THE TABLE!!! She said she loved it and that she always has a book, so it will come in handy!)!
Oh yeah, and the last picture is of BookWormz making their (faux) debut at Borders (yeah, that's my goofy self). Stay tuned - they were a huge hit! One girl bought one from me on the spot - and I didn't even go there to sell them! :)

14 comments:

Darcy said...

How exciting! I'm a big reader, too, and I'm very happy that you had such an amazing day!

Molly said...

What a fun day. I would love to attend one of her book signings some day.

Angela said...

I'm so jealous...I still have to read Change of Heart, but should be starting it soon!

This is so weird, but I had an idea for you this AM on my walk into work - have you thought about making Collegiate themed BookWormz?? :-)

Cory said...

How exciting for you. :)

Angela said...

Well, I wonder if you wouldn't just be able to use a collegiate ribbon...

You could do colors also - for U of M it should be a blue ribbon with yellow band and buttons or something...

Hmmm...

Amanda said...

Very cool! Sounds like you had a great time! Congrats :)

Angela said...

That sounds like a great time! I hope you DO have your BookWormz in Borders all over the US soon!

I can't wait to get mine!!

The Silver Dog said...

That is so cool!

Cindy said...

Sounds like the event with Jodi was alot of fun. I am dying to read this book. She is a fantastic writer. A movie? Can't wait.

Chris said...

Sounds like fun!

Sharazad Moore said...

That's so cool...
Good for you!

Keris Stainton said...

Sounds great. I don't love all her books (although I ADORED My Sister's Keeper), but I do find her inspiring.

April said...

YAY - I finally made it over here to check out your post on Jodi's visit. You are sooo lucky! How awesome! I loved the post and the pictures are so cool!! Hopefully one day I can get to meet her, also. I still haven't bought the new book, but may have to get it at audible so that I can listen to it sooner, lol!

thriftymomma said...

OMG I just found this and I am losing it. I am a big big fan. I cannot beleive you met her. Love her books and her writing. How lovely for you! So super uberjealous right now.