I receive a lot of selfless email–strangers reaching out, taking the time to say, "I’ve never done this before, but I just had to write…" I try to respond because really, those emails make me happy. Not Coke commercial happy, but sort of that quiet happy that tucks you in.
In truth, I don’t always get the chance to respond, but the sentiments linger. Not just the sweet selfless notes, but the notes that run deeper, the ones where a stranger reaches out, sharing his/her sad story (yes, men read this blog). To know something you’ve put out there has affected someone is a powerful thing. That said, the other day, I was sad. I felt sorry for myself. No reason, just a general ick feeling. It happens. And then I received this, from the teacher of a writing workshop I took in NYC:
Stephanie, thought you might get a kick out of this. Saturday, I was taking the train out to Long Beach–great beach day–and a young woman sat down next to me and pulled out a book. Moose! I asked her if she was enjoying it, and she said, "Yes. It’s my life." And she was wondering if you were writing about the same camp she went to. I gave her my card and told her to email me if she wanted to find out, but I haven’t heard from her yet.
So, people are reading your book and enjoying it.
Hope things are going well.
So fucking nice. He doesn’t want anything from me, wasn’t writing asking for a favor. Just genuinely nice. In the spirit of this, I encourage you all to spread the love today. Hell, it’s Friday. Go on. It doesn’t take long. Shoot off a quick email, or make a speedy phone call, just tell someone something really nice today. Compliment a stranger, your barista, the bus driver, make someone’s day. We all deserve that from time to time, and the thing is, as much as you’ll make their day, you’re going to feel giddy, too. Because we all feel nice when we do nice things.
5 YEARS AGO: The Idea of Grand