Wednesday, May 20, 2009
PATTI CALLAHAN HENRY
Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about love. With my new novel (DRIFTWOOD SUMMER) coming out in a week, this question keeps coming up: Why did you write about a bookstore on a beach? And I keep telling everyone it is because I love bookstores and I love beaches. Love? Can we really love a bookstore? A beach?
We don’t often ask ourselves WHY we love someone or something, we just do. Love that is – we just love. If I try and dissect why, the feeling or the knowing seems to move past me like fog. There is no real answer to “why”. But I have come to believe this – what and who we love helps define who we are.
For example: Why did I become a writer? I know the answer hides beneath the things and people I love; the deeper loves of my life. I grew up a bookworm; I love reading. I grew up hiding in libraries because we moved so much I didn’t have many friends: I love libraries. I love God, and doesn’t he use the word “word” to describe the Self he sent to earth? I love words – where they came from, how they sound, how they change when they are next to each other. I even risked friends by being a member of the Latin Club.
There are many more loves, yet they all add up to equal me. Who I am. And they also contribute to my upside down (or maybe it is inside out) way I look at life: others might interpret a novel through their life experience; I experience life through the stories I’ve read and known. Reading and words have changed the way I see life: Love does that.