During the past two years, I’ve been to a number of conventions and book festivals, and I’ve enjoyed them all. One of the coolest aspects is getting to meet some authors who I’ve been reading for many (many!) years. And when I do, a strange feeling comes over me, as I morph into Fanboy.
Here’s a sample conversation:
Me: I-I-I-I’m a huge fan of your work.
Big-Name Author: Thank you very much.
B-N A: Well, nice meeting you…
It doesn’t seem to happen with people in other glamour occupations. If I happen to see a movie star or athlete, I’ll notice, but I don’t get weak in the knees. I once talked to Patrick Ewing in a shopping mall, and my pulse didn’t even start racing. For some reason, though, there’s something about meeting a favorite, Big-Name author, in person, that gets me drooling. I mean, come on, these people have written books that have captured my imagination. Taken me to worlds I’d never dreamed of. Kept me enthralled for hours.
Of course I idolize them! I wanna be just like them when I grow up!
I know it’s not cool; I know it’s not professional. I know it’s a bit childish, even. After all, they put their culottes on the same way I do. I just can’t help it! (Maybe it’s because I was a reader—and not a writer—for so many years.)
Some Big-Name Author encounters:
I got blurbs from two of my favorite Big-Name Authors* (thanks again, guys!). I took a picture with Big-Name Author* at Malice Domestic (by the way, Jessie 2 or Vicki, was it taken on one of your cameras?). A very gracious Big-Name Author* moderated my panel at Malice. At a ThrillerFest dinner, I spilled an ice-cold beverage in Big-Name Author’s* lap. At another ThrillerFest event, I got introduced by one Big-Name Author* and met another Big-Name Author*, the keynote speaker. Recently, I chatted with a Big-Name Author* at a local MWA event, and managed not to make a fool of myself. And I’ve shaken hands with a number of other Big-Name Authors* along the way.
(I know what you’re thinking. These Big-Name authors are just people. And you are correct. They. Are. Just. People.)
Not too long ago, I was invited to be in a writer’s group with some Big-Name Authors**, one of whom wrote one of my favorite books EVER. (It’s a wonder I don’t drool every time we get together.) And now that author is asking me for critiques? Positively surreal.
Here’s my question to you MInkers: Does the fanboy (or fangirl) phenomenon ever fade? I kinda hope it doesn’t!
*Big-Name Authors, not in any order
- Michael Palmer
- Reed Farrel Coleman
- Sue Grafton
- Michael Connelly
- Andrew Gross
- Harlan Coben
- Margaret Maron
- John Lescroart
- John Gilstrap
- P.J. Parrish (both of them)
- Jeffery Deaver
- Brad Meltzer
**Sorry, some things should be kept private.