Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Serendipity and Augusten Burroughs

You know it's quite an ordeal to run any errands at all on the buses, and I always have a difficult time planning how to get anything done at all. I was really unsure as to whether I wanted to hassle with my bus errands today or put them off until tomorrow. I decided to get them done today, and had I not, I would not have had this amazing night!

At about 3:45 p.m. I was proceeding North on York Road on a #8 bus. What I read on the Towson University marquee made my jaw drop. I turned my head around struggling to read the sign as the bus passed. I considered getting off at the next stop just so I could read the marquee, but decided to run my errands first. Here's what I saw:


And that was all she wrote folks! I wondered if he was on campus today. He's one of my favorite authors, one of my biggest inspirations. After I read "Running with Scissors" a few years ago I thought, wow, I have alot in common with this man; he's my literary soulmate of sorts!

He's been on my mind, and I've been wanting to email him to ask him his opinion on what he thinks the chances are that my story on homelessness could be made into a movie. About a month ago, something possessed my friend Adam, to send me back the 11 page original copy of a letter I wrote to him while homeless in 1995. I read it to my friend John, and said:" you know this letter may be very valuable someday. I can see this turned into a screenplay, can you?" "That's a distinct possibility" he replied.

Well, serendipitously, (and this is the only day I had the letter on my while out and about) I had 2 copies of the letter in my backpack today that I was planning to mail to 2 friends to have them keep it safe for me. And one of those friends is a professional writer, so I was going to ask her whether or not she thinks its good screenplay material or not.

I ran my errands, went to the Towson public library googled Augusten Burroughs to find out if he was on the Towson University campus today and found out that he is!

At 6:15 p.m. I got in a line with about 200 people in front of me, waited an hour, and got 90 seconds to excitedly tell Augusten about what we have in common, give his hand a squeeze, and hand him a copy of the (previously mentioned) letter to hang on to, with a quick explanation of what I had in mind. On it, I wrote my email address and my blogsite.

Wow! I got to meet Augusten face to face! He did a reading from the book "Dry", talked about his life, and took questions. He said that he turned his journals over to his agent and that was the impetus for his first book. I asked him, (during formal q and a time) what the chances are of that happening for me?   He said: (and I paraphrase) "don't worry about statistics and chances, if your heart feels you've really got something special then just do it."

Have you read any of his books? I have not yet seen the movie: "Running with Scissors", have you?

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