I was in a routine despair jag over the state of my writing when I was tagged in a Facebook post by one of my former creative writing students from Cornell. He quoted something from class, and I guess I said it: “Remember your favorite book, and remember that you’re trying to write someone else’s favorite book.” I guess I said it? I’ll take it. The exact wording was probably way more profound and articulate (yup), but that’s what I meant.
I wanted to write a book that an outsider like me would carry in a coat pocket, or a backpack, and always have it ready. I still do.