Best-selling author Fannie Flagg has penned a new novel, The All-Girl Filling Station’s Last Reunion, and it’s destined to follow her earlier successes, including Fried Green Tomatoes At The Whistle Stop Cafe. This news made me recall my own special Fannie Flagg story and how the magic of the Universe works.
I’ve mentioned before in this blog that I’ve written a book, based on my spiritual awakening, that I hope to publish soon. Creating the manuscript is just part of the process. When it comes to marketing a book, authors often enlist blurbs from famous people to typically grace back covers. A fan of hers since a child watching her on Candid Camera, Fannie Flagg would be the endorser of my dreams for my memoir. Too, I’d written to her in 1987 after reading Fried Green Tomatoes…, praising her pages of fiction. A few months later, she replied with a sincere thank-you note! And, she’s also an Alabama native and even knows people from my hometown, Enterprise!
Social media is a set of tools that can also be an asset in building buzz in publishing. That being said, I’ve set up a website and a blog, but was reluctant to establish a Twitter account, thinking it might be overkill and worthless. Finally, early summer 2012, I signed up. In selecting people to follow on Twitter, I immediately searched for Fannie, but didn’t find her. To get me more involved, Twitter suggested some folks for me to follow, one of whom was the organizer of the Santa Barbara Writers’ Conference. I not only followed this person, I clicked onto the event’s website.
Guess what? It’s annual conference was happening within two weeks AND the keynote speaker was Fannie Flagg! Plus, tickets for her appearance were available to the general public for a nominal charge. Naturally, I made plans to drive four hours from Palm Springs to Santa Barbara. Sitting on the front row, I was fortunate to hear her read excerpts from her then recent work, I Still Dream About You. Oh, but it gets better!
Later that evening, she held a book signing. When it came my turn to meet my literary idol, I introduced myself and told her that I was originally from Enterprise, Alabama. And, then showed her the note that she’d written to me nearly 25 years ago. As she signed my copy of Fried Green Tomatoes…, I asked if she was honored that another Alabama writer, Harper Lee, the reclusive author of To Kill a Mockingbird, had given her a quote for Tomatoes’ back cover jacket. Of course, she said it was a thrill and a dream come true. Then, I replied, “Well, Fannie, when my book gets published, I would be honored if you would be my Harper Lee.” Oh, but it get’s better!
“Well, darling, do you have it with you?” she asked. I did have a draft – complete with typos and a few misspelled words – with me.
“Yes, it’s right here,” I responded, pointing at the 254 pages of paper in a clear binder.
“Well, is that for me?”
“Yes! Yes! Thank you!” I exclaimed.
So, here’s the thing (by the way, that’s probably my most over-used phrase when I do my psychic intuitive consultations), whether or not Fannie reads my manuscript and feels comfortable to give a quote is to be determined. What’s important is that I had a desired vision, paid attention to signs and was willing to take action. And, then allow the Universe to align our paths and bring the two of us together.
I can’t wait to read Fannie’s latest, The All-Girl Filling Station’s Last Reunion. Until then, I’ll revisit her inscription in my hardbound copy of Fried Green Tomatoes…“For Tony – Much love to my Alabama friend! Fannie Flagg.”
Love and light,