I’ve had a chance to meet many of my favorite writers. And I’m star struck most of the time it happens. Sometimes my brain goes into temporary hibernation, refusing to allow my tongue to work properly. Ever been there?
It’s just so doggone cool to meet these published authors, especially if I’ve read their books as a fan. I still remember my fist ACFW Conference (St. Louis 2011). I knew that Brandilyn Collins was going to be there. She’s one of my favorite authors. I really wanted to meet her. Shouldn’t be that hard, right? I’m a grown–relatively mature–adult with workable social skills. Then the moment came…and went. I was preparing to get off the elevator. The doors opened, and there stood mulitpublished, award-winning, Brandilyn Collins. And I had no idea what to say. I had to look down at my name tag to remember my own name. Awkward. I wandered off the elevator, she got on…and the opportunity was gone. Later, however, after a few rounds of Christian stalking, I did get to meet her. Then, at the same conference, a new friend introduced me to Terri Blackstock. I’m not sure what I said to her, but chances are it resembled that Chris Farley skit on Saturday Night Live. I’m sure you’ve never felt such nervousness in the presence of someone you admired. I’m riding solo on the goofball express, huh?
I just get tongue-tied around people I admire from the standpoint of a fan.
And when my tongue does work, it’s not always a good thing. I’ll spare myself the embarrassment of telling you what happened the first time I met Nancy Mehl. (Picture me slapping my forehead). And don’t listen to the members of the South-Central Kansas ACFW chapter when they say that they think I have a man-crush on Ted Dekker. I’m sure I’ll be just fine if ever given the opportunity to meet him…
And what’s really ironic is that as a preacher/teacher I talk for a living! Yes, God is a God of wonders.
seriously, it is really a thrill to meet so many talented writers whose books I’ve read. I was nice to meet Collen Coble and Rene Gutteridge at this past ACFW conference, then to have Rene come and speak to our local chapter, and sign a book for me. And to be friends with published authors like Nancy Mehl, Karl Bacon, and Deborah Raney is a blessing that has made my writing journey more enjoyable.
But do you know who else has blessed my enormously? The unpublished writers that attend my local chapter, or go to conference. These fellow stewards of story work hard to reach their goals and achieve their dreams. To them I say, “It’s an incredible honor to know you. You make me proud to be a writer. And when you get published and I become a fan of your books, just forgive me if I walk up and get tongue-tied or something dumb comes out of my mouth.”