A couple of weeks ago, I read on StacyKnows.com that Jane Green, one of my favorite chick-lit authors of all time, was going to be at the White Plains Library, less than 5 minutes from my home. I grew up with Jane Green, figuratively. She created characters that I related to through my 20s and 30s, going from singlehood to married life to being a mother. Every time a new book would come out, it seemed as if I had written it, when really I had been living it.
Her writing is based on what most women can relate to…boyfriend finding, making good and bad decisions, career moves, girl drama, in-law troubles and more. Some of my favorite Jane Green titles include Mr. Maybe, The Other Woman and Swapping Lives. So a big thanks to StacyKnows for letting me know that I was going to be able to meet Jane Green right in my own backyard. I arrived early, figuring a 14 time New York Times Bestselling Author would draw a massive audience with hundreds of guests, fighting for her attention and her autograph. Nope. I would guess that there were 25-30 women present and as I eavesdropped on some of the women in the audience, many had not read her books!
Did they know who they were waiting for and how lucky they were to have the chance to see her in such an intimate setting? Teresa Guidice from the Real Housewives of New Jersey packs the house when she launches a disgusting sparkling wine at a liquor store AND it makes the front page of the local newspaper to boot! Jane Green speaks to people at a library and there are more empty seats than filled seats. Regardless, I consider myself lucky and wait patiently.
Jane stands at the podium and speaks to the audience in her soft voice, complete with English accent, which I have never “heard” in her books. She grew up in London and considers herself the founder of chick-lit, as she was one of the first to write about the real life complexities of women’s lives. Besides writing novels she has written for publications in the UK and US, covering the royal wedding and being a guest of Martha Stewart’s as she also enjoys cooking and gardening. She spoke about writing in general and said that she is a reader first, and an “observer of life” and that is what helps her create her characters and her plots. To be a writer, she suggests that you need to live life and tell stories.
Great news for me, as I am not a trained writer. I have not taken a writing class in years but I like writing about experiences and moments and sharing them with others. The timing of hearing these words from someone I admired for so long was uncanny. I am relieved that I do not have to feel pressured to “learn to write” for this blog. I feel comfortable living life, observing and recording moments as they happen.
So when does this become humorous? When the lecture ends, Jane sells and signs copies of her new book Tempting Fate. I realize that the library is only accepting cash. I have a giant bag with an iPhone, and iPad and a wallet filled with credit cards. No credit cards, they say. Cash Only. I find my Girl Scout troop checkbook and consider borrowing $20 from the troop and depositing the loaned $20 back during the week.
It was then that I spoke with StacyKnows and she kindly lent me a twenty dollar bill so I could buy Jane Green’s 15th book! The person who made me aware of the event in the first place also made it possible for me to bring a copy of the signed book home. I went home and immediately paypal-ed StacyKnows $20 with an apology combined with a thank you in the memo box….. “thanks for lending me $20 today.”
Bio: Emma Westchester is a fictional character, based on two women who are polar opposites on paper, but almost identical in real life. Erin is a fourth-generation native of Westchester County and Shawna was raised on the West Coast and became the accidental suburban when she moved from Manhattan. We came up with the phrase “moms like us” to reach and connect with moms like ourselves. This lifestyle blog caters to women in Westchester County, NY where we discover & share quality experiences, unique brands and humorous moments in our lives with “Moms Like Us”.