Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Coffee & a Confab with These Authors? Why, Yes! Yes, Indeed!

Joining in on the fun over at The Broke and the Bookish for 
their Top Ten Tuesday.  
Today’s list is:

Coffee & a Confab with These Authors?  Why, Yes!  Yes, Indeed!
(or Top Ten Authors I'd DIE to Meet )

Well, let me start by saying I'm not dying to meet anyone - never have had a desire to meet anyone that was so strong I'd do just about anything for it.  However, there are a number of authors with whom I could have quite the memorable chat, and would not hesitate to do so if given the opportunity.  
I am glad to be able to share them.

Mark Twain
Really, who would not want to meet this man?  He was ridiculously smart, sarcastic, witty, hilariously funny, sharp, and had a good distrust of the government.  What's not to love?
Pat Conroy
As a southerner myself, and I can really relate to a lot of what he writes.  Further, his grasp of the English language is second to none, his writing is brilliant, he has a self-deprecating wit, and he tells the brutal truth.  Most humbling to me, however, is his incredible breadth of reading and his ease in talking off the top of his head about a stunning number of books and authors.
Flannery O'Connor 
Her ability to skewer the social constructs of her generation was astounding, and she seemed to do it without effort.  She was incredibly observant, strongly convicted in her beliefs, and unafraid to write about what she believed in.  If it ruffled feathers, she was not bothered.  Certainly one of the greatest short story writers who has ever been, she wrote thought-provoking and disturbing stories that were meant to cause the reader discomfort and introspection.
Louisa May Alcott
If only to satisfy my suspicion that Jo March was Louisa May Alcott in disguise.  I suspect that I would find her interesting and perhaps a little out of step with her generation - perhaps a little ahead of her time.  It would be a cool thing to hear her perspective.
Kathryn Stockett 
I was so absolutely mesmerized by The Help, and it has stayed in my mind for the months since I read it.  I would thoroughly enjoy listening to her talk about her background, and how she came to write this lovely (and controversial) book.
Christos Tsiolkas 
He's Greek & Australian, and he has written a book (The Slap) that starkly exposes the prejudices and biases that pervade Australian life.  Interestingly to me, they are nearly a mirror of those that we contend with in the US, and though the clashing cultures have different backgrounds, the difficulties that arise when they interact are so similar to what happens here make it highly relatable.  I'd love to listen to him discuss how this book came into being.

Judy Blume 
I confess, I stole her name from another Top Ten, but I would love to meet her nonetheless.  She was a staple of my tween and teen years, and an author who can make the kind of connection she did with that angst-filled stage in a girl's life is an author worth chatting up.
Harper Lee 
She wrote such a heart-rending, thought-provoking book, and I would love to pick her brain about why she never published again.
Elie Wiesel 
Obviously, to hear his first hand, personal account of survival during the Holocaust.
Stephen & Tabitha King 
I've read many of Stephen's books and several of Tabitha's.  It would be really cool to listen to them talk not only of their own literary endeavors, but how the fact that they are both published (and famous) authors works for (and perhaps against) their personal relationship.  How do they interact as authors?  Do they work together?  Do they critique each other?  Do they like each others' writing?

C. S. Lewis 
Not only for The Chronicles of Narnia, but for his vast body of spiritual writing.  To listen to him speak of his personal relationship with God would be both humbling and inspiring.  In particular, I would love to hear him expound on his understanding of forgiveness, mercy and grace.
Caroline Leavitt 
I've been connected to her through Facebook, and she seems a kind of flighty, excitable type that stresses easily.  HOWEVER, I have loved every book she has written (I've read all but the newest), and I would really enjoy hearing her talk about her own life experiences, and how they factor into her book ideas.
James Lee Burke
The man who created Dave Robicheaux is a man I want to meet.  I love the series and the setting, and I would dig listening to an old cowboy talk about his writing.
Joe Coomer 
Because his books are so different...and a little weird.  Because they're about odd people doing odd things.  Because he writes about Appalachia.  Because he's not very well known, but he's written something like 8-10 books, and they're good.

Jonathan Latimer 
His book The Lady in the Morgue turned me on to hard-boiled detective fiction, and it beautifully epitomizes the genre.  He was a contemporary (and friend) of Ernest Hemingway - even spent some time in Key West during the time Hemingway was there.  I think it would be great fun to talk to him, not only about his own writing (and his penchant for odd titles), but about his friendship with Hemingway.

And last but not least...

J. K. Rowling 
Duh!  If you're a Harry Potter fan, how can you not want to meet the woman who came up with him and touched off one of the most incredible book franchises in history?


  1. Good list. Flannery O'Connor is number one on mine. I've always been interested in how much literary couples are involved in each others' processes as well. I would like to ask Michael Chabon and Ayelet Waldman, or Dave Eggers and Vendela Vida, or Jonathan Safron Foer and Nicole Krauss.

  2. Pat Conroy & Cassandra King