I met with a bunch of writers this weekend at a memoir writing conference. I usually feel quasi-suicidal after these conferences, but I was truly inspired by some of the people I met. Each one looking for a way to tell their story. Some already quite sophisticated about the challenges. Others fantastically naive. One man, an admitted beginner, had one question on his mind: how long will it take from the day he starts writing to when a publisher will accept it. The more I tried to hedge, the more he pressed. Finally, I gave him an answer: five years minimum. On the way home, I got lost and went inside a bar to ask directions. It was a smokey dive. All the men wore caps and smoked Marlboros. I felt as if I had walked inside a Richard Russo novel. I thought of pulling up a stool and staying there for the rest of my life.
What’s the best pick-up line you ever heard or used?
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