My college buddy Tom Gillespie and I used to lie in our dorm bunks confessing to each other in the dark, about our dreams.
I wanted to be a famous writer. How famous? I think I told my wife, when we were still kids, that I hoped to one day be on the David Letterman show.
So no wonder Tom and Cristie didn’t believe me when I started saying, around forty, that I didn’t care about that anymore.
But I don’t.
I’ve had just enough public recognition for my work that I know how fast it goes through you. And I’ve known enough famous people to know that they’re less happy than me or you.
But boy, when I gradually started to sense that this book of mine might amount to something, I went after it like a hungry and perhaps rabid wolverine. (And if you’re missing some flesh, that’s on me.)
I went after it because I love my book and I want everybody to read it. I love my book because I love my best writing and this book contains some of that. Also because I love my family, living and dead, and it’s their book too.
And because I love my friends and my colleagues and a lot of other people and I want you to meet them and know how great they are, and they are in here, too, in one way or another. And yes, because I’d like to do some good in the world, and this is the best I have to offer.
For a creepy writer, those are the purest motives there are. And on the day this book launched, my family gave me balloons, my colleagues gave me presents and my friends encouraged their friends to buy the book, and sent me private notes that touched me and my dead ancestors both.
I’ll never forget Tuesday. I guess it’s only true to say it was the day my dream came true.