Everyone loves a Boston girl. This is the story of one Boston girl's adventures in the city, in blogging, and in getting through those crazy 20-something years.

I'm a writer by trade. And by passion. I'm a lover of food, friends, and all things Boston. I listen to music pretty much 24/7 and idolize Martha Stewart. I love my job(s), my life, and this city. Follow me on Twitter! @Susie

i want to be lorrie moore. but i’ll settle for reading her.

What book – fiction or non – touched you?


Back in a college literature class I had to read Lorrie Moore’s Birds of America. I had never heard of Moore before, but instantly fell in love. Like before the book even started. Mainly because she started the book with a quote from Charlie Smith’s “The Meaning of Birds”:

… it is not news that we live in a world
where beauty is unexplainable
and suddenly ruined
and has its own routines. We are often far
from home in a dark town, and our griefs
are difficult to translate into a language
understood by others.”

Wow. And that wasn’t even Lorrie Moore writing, but it set the tone for the whole book. Anyway, I’ve since read Birds of America about a billion times and FINALLY realized I needed to read another Lorrie Moore book. So, I picked up Self-Help and yup, I fell in love again. Honestly, I generally dislike books of short stories, much preferring a good novel, But Moore’s short stories are to die for. They make me feel like I opened a box of chocolates and ate every single one. And everyone had something delicious inside (peanut butter, toffee, fudge…)She’s one of those writers who says basically everything I’m thinking, but ten times more beautifully. Her writing makes me so emotional- happy, sad, and everything in between.

This excerpt is from a Self-Help story called “How to Become a Writer, Or Have You Earned This Cliche?”

“First, try to be something, anything, else. A movie star/astronaut. A movie star/ missionary. A movie star/kindergarten teacher. President of the World. Fail miserably. It is best if you fail at an early age – say, 14. Early, critical disillusionment is necessary so that at 15 you can write long haiku sequences about thwarted desire. It is a pond, a cherry blossom, a wind brushing against sparrow wing leaving for mountain. Count the syllables. Show it to your mom. She is tough and practical. She has a son in Vietnam and a husband who may be having an affair. She believes in wearing brown because it hides spots. She’ll look briefly at your writing then back up at you with a face blank as a doughnut. She’ll say: ”How about emptying the dishwasher?” Look away. Shove the forks in the fork drawer. Accidentally break one of the freebie gas station glasses. This is the required pain and suffering. This is only for starters.”

OK, I’ll admit it. I want to be Lorrie Moore. Nothing would make me happier in life than if I could put my ideas on paper like she can. I’ve said it before, but one of the most joyful and most painful things about being a writer is reading other writers who can say things a million times better than you.

But I wouldn’t have it any other way. Lorrie Moore played a big part in my year and will continue to play that part throughout my entire life.

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