Lorrie Moore has a new collection of short stories out called Bark, and I headed down to the Los Angeles Central Library to hear her read tonight. You might remember the last time I went to hear her, when her novel came out ten years after I had discovered her in the New Yorker and how I had a wonderful encounter with her when I asked her a simple question after she read and then conversed with Michael Silverblatt -- but just now I searched and searched and couldn't find the post, so now I'm thinking that I never wrote about it. Oh. I don't feel like doing so right now-- just take my word that we had an encounter. That she spoke to me, directly, and blew me away. I did write a post last August called Group Therapy that does a reasonable job explaining just how much this writer means to me, so you can read that if you'd like.
So, it's been fifteen years since Moore published a collection of short stories, and I've just begun delving in. I'm a reader who keeps an anticipated book sitting by my bedside for weeks as a sort of tantalizing confection that I need to put off before devouring. Bark is like that, so I read one story at a time and then put it down. It's a ritual.Tonight she read one of the new short stories in her beautiful, melodious voice and then conversed a bit with the playwright Brighde Mullins. It was an amazing short story, filled with her mordant wit and keen observation and then the tenderest of endings. God, I love a good short story. The conversation between the two writers was a bit slow, but I didn't care. Like David Sedaris, Lorrie Moore is someone who I honestly believe would be my friend if she only knew me.