A LETTER TO A FAMOUS AUTHOR
By Daniel Giovinazzo
A letter to a famous author:
It was one humid night in late June, 2012, when I found Best of Young Writers, 1997, on my dusty bookcase. Just-in Case— an old friend of mine— you are wondering, about the dust on my bookcase, it was not, in fact, reflective of my lack of reading; however, I did, in fact, neglect to physically take the time to wipe the dust particles off of the shelves. [At that time in my life, too frequently I very earnestly rummaged, betwixt— across— over… and through as many of the kinds of voices that make up what is known as the genre of literary fiction]. So, desperately, and for so many years— past, and years yet to come—I wished to be a part of this throng of authors………………Anyhow, late on that humid night in June— the tone of this letter is intense because that was exactly my disposition— (inherent state of mind and body; I’m not saying that you don’t know what disposition means, it is just that words are so f_______ slippery, if you know what I’m saying, and I don’t want—I can’t make one little mistake in writing this letter to you; I hope, it is perfect); — Anyway, AT THAT TIME, I couldn’t articulate and record my susceptibility to being wounded or hurt, but I can now. And I will. If that is okay with you? One thing I’ve learned for sure is that writers are extraordinarily sensitive… incredibly fragile…. people by nature as you must know. Moreover, I’m sending this Letter To A Famous Author because I want her [by the way, one can’t say anything these days without offending some-body, some-where, out-there] to help make it possible for me to have a chance to sing my song to the world— however manic my song may be. And, I know, I, absolutely need to dispel all of the fear manifesting within my being right now. I am asking for the chance to sing on the biggest stage possible before my voice breaks… Before I can no longer speak. I have found my voice broken before, and I have suffered from paralysis. Am I suffering from paralysis? RIGHT NOW? I don’t know…. Why is it that writers need validation? Does writing something mean anything? My apologies for this incessant dire need of mine to digress every chance I get— are you a Kurt Vonnegut fan? …………………………………Any who, way back then— it was, if I can remember correctly, late June, 2012: inside of the hot, air conditioned-less, room I found myself sweating within that night. I hoisted the collection of short stories— and, precisely, at that same moment, I felt as though I was in the middle of a maniacal sort of franticness… I felt as though I was in the middle of this undeniably obsessive and kooky ascension, centering in my mind— stimulating me to overtake the ivory-towered and delusional endeavor to draft some kind of a prodigious form of a short story before the night’s end. Unquestionably, it was no earlier than one o’clock in the morning when I began to read the first short story in the aforementioned prestigious collection. It was written by a famous author. I held onto the physical copy of the book— the found object— figuratively— for dear life, in search of young voices that I knew were out there, and that I knew I could identify with— and relate to— and be influenced by— oh, and pardon the Oxford comma…......And so it goes on to the point where I read through the first short story of the collection [The story written by another famous author…I hadn’t gotten to yours quite yet], closely examining everything that makes up the narrative arc of a fictional short story. I believe that on that explicit muggy summer night was the first time I consciously recognized what it meant to actively interact with a text. I realized how, as a reader, a person is able to intellectually connect with a writer in a very personable way…The obvious disappointment being that the writer is not physically around to share his or her ideas with the reader; additionally, the disconcerting actualization I made that night was the idea that it is not the physical presence of the writer that holds any philosophical value— or dramatic weight, metaphysically speaking. No, it is the words on the page that actually hold all of the real, definitive meaning. The writer is merely a found object that serves as a vehicle used in the process of transporting ideas, embodied in language, from one brain to another. And it was a sobering intimation that the physical presence of the writer can easily stand in between, and block two found objects from getting through to one another……………..................................…….After reading the story written by the other famous author, I continued reading on further in the Best Of Young Writers collection, and I authentically came across your luminous short story. It didn’t take more than the first paragraph for me to be exhilarated by your work. In one line, it seemed, you had the ability to sum up the story of my entire life. So to make a long story short, I got hooked on your lingo, and I studied your words voraciously. And then your words led me to the Godfather of Fabulism: Italo Calvino— the man, the myth, the legend, and, naturally— this is besides the point— I had to go all out and buy practically everything by Immanuel Kant because you [I do not use second person POV to offend you – but to acknowledge you] are a philosopher………………………….………………………………I know that my work, in the long run, runs the risk of being deemed derivative, but I refuse to lose. And every day that goes by, I get a little better at this writing thing. And every day that goes by, I learn something new from somebody smarter than me— somebody with more wisdom than me— somebody who has the willingness to share their wisdom with me— to guide me so that I don’t have to live my life doing the same things over and over again, and expecting different results. For that— my friend? —colleague— peer? I don’t know what I might be in relation to you— is the definition of insanity. And furthermore, I will openly admit that I am not exactly the most mentally stable person on the face of this Earth, but then who is and I will be damned if I’m going to operate with insanity being my mantra….
All The Best Wishes—
Daniel Giovinazzo is a graduate of Hartwick College. In addition, he received an MFA from Lesley University in Creative Writing. An emerging voice, Daniel has supported his writing by working as a house-painter, landscaper, mason-tender, line-cook, greenhouse keeper, and public educator. He has written three unpublished books and is looking for an agent. Currently he is an adjunct professor of writing at Mitchell College, putting the finishing touches on his first novel. Letter To A Famous Author culminated from thirteen years of getting up early, staying up late, and reading The Philosophical Review…