I meet them everywhere, hidden in all the most unobtrusive places. Yesterday it was the U-Haul store. I had to buy boxes. It is time to winnow down my book collection which is spilling into every room of my house and overtaking my life. It is time to make those tough decisions. Boxes will help me organize.
The tall, young man with the cheery greeting and the tattoo on his arm is a writer, he confesses to me as I decide which box size will work best. Our conversation about books we have read and favorite authors quickly jumps into the sinister darkness of his ex-girlfriend’s poetry. She eventually got her work published, he assures me, even though one editor told her the poems would inspire suicide.
This would-be writer convinces me to buy the size small box instead of the one labeled “book box.” And he convinces me to buy two packs of 25 each. Like me, he loves Stephen King’s book “On Writing.” Our conversation weaves and bends between the merits of packaging tape and his favorite thriller authors. The man is not afraid to talk to strangers. I encourage this U-Haul sales clerk to keep writing and to join the local writers’ club.
After two unsuccessful attempts to ring up my rather large order, the man eventually lets me pay for it all. He loads up my boxes and bubble wrap on a cart and wheels them out to my car. Everything fits in its place, even this young writer about to be discovered.
–Victoria Emmons, copyright 2015