A Storyteller at Heart

Adair Heitmann here writing to you today about listening to Scott Simon speak at the Fairfield Theatre Company about his new book, Baby We Were Meant for Each Other. Simon was featured in the WSHU “Join the Conversation” series. Sharing stories about his book, to a packed house, Simon had all of us crying along with him.  I’ve heard Simon on NPR for years, but it wasn’t until the night of his talk that I realized his gift. He is a storyteller.

Simon’s book is about the journey of parenthood with his wife through the adoption of two little girls from China. In Baby We Were Meant  for Each Other Simon also tells stories about other adoptive families. I love Author Talks, I am the one riveted to my seat hanging onto every word an author utters. I always walk away inspired, yet, I don’t always walk away with a soundbite that resonates, this time I did.

“You become a parent out of joy,” Simon told the audience as he teared up. He revealed his vulnerabilities along with his triumphs in humorous, self-effacing descriptions of the smallest, most personal details of the adoptive process. He wrote the book he and his wife vowed he would never write.

Sitting in the theatre, listening to the rhythm of Simon’s words I was reminded of my Uncle Ed. Uncle Ed gave me my first Brownie camera and to this day I love photography. My uncle sent his family in Kentucky cartoons while he was in the Air Force during WWll and later had a strip in a local newspaper, and I became an artist. Uncle Ed was my favorite uncle, he was a member of my family who really understood me, and Uncle Ed was adopted.

My inspirational take-away from Simon’s Author Talk boils down to: Write about what matters to you the most, tell it in a good story, don’t be afraid to cry, and the rest will follow.

Until next time, keep on writing!

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