Julia Cameron, Part II
You might recall a while back I posted a review of Julia Cameron's memoir, Floor Sample. For those of you who are not familiar with Julia Cameron, she created the best selling artists guide called The Artists Way. It’s a highly regarded book on how to unearth your creativity, imagination and awaken your subconscious to make your goals and ambitions happen.
I read Floor Sample and was truly amazed at this woman. She is an incredible human being, a novelist, songwriter, screenwriter, poet, teacher, creative guru. I thought there is no way I will be able to get an interview with her. Just...no.
I was lucky enough to communicate with Julia’s assistant who said Julia would do a telephone interview with yours truly. Yes, I know. Fear, anxiety and worry braided together and made a knot in my stomach. I hemmed and hawed about getting in touch to pinpoint an interview time. This was Julia Cameron after all. I let fear stand in my way which is silly because I interview talented authors all the time and usually its excitement under my skin, not nerves.
In her book, Julia discusses synchronicity, a coincidence that's meant to be, if you will. Now I don’t go along thinking that every person I meet is going to want to help me or further my career path. But here she is, an accomplished writer, having done the things I want to do. She is standing before me (synchronicity) and I'm going to pass up the opportunity to talk to her because of fear? No. I sent an email to Julia’s assistant and decided on a date and time. 2:20pm. I had my questions on yellow lined paper, a few pens and a glass of water. I was ready. The clock was ticking. My kids were in another room, instructed to only come into my office if there was blood, but preferably get daddy first.
I dialed, my fingers trembling. And then...an answering machine. She forgot about me? “Julia? We.. um…had an appointment for an interview…? Perhaps something came up…in any case, you can reach me at 555-555-5555.”
That was disappointing. But then with a sinking feeling not unlike lead in the pit of my stomach, I realized that Julia is in New York. I am in California. There is a three hour time difference. She had been expecting my call at 11:20, New York Time. Oh dear.
Julia called a bit later and I apologized profusely for being so out of it, if only she could see my bright red face and feel my rapid pulse. Another day and time was set- Monday and yes, I clarified the time. My kids would be in school, the house would be quiet, I would be ready.
Unfortunately, over the weekend I got sick and had picked up some antibiotics Monday morning, taking a pill as soon as I had the bottle in my hands. An hour, two hours, and I was on my knees in the bathroom, so sick that I could only lay on the floor and moan. I stumbled to the telephone and called Julia to explain my situation.
“We can just reschedule,” she said. I thought she would say "oh well, let's just forget it!" But instead she suggested we choose another day and time to conduct our interview.
I think in life there are a series of lessons to learn. I need to get over my fear of calling people on the phone, reigning in my awe of those more accomplished than myself, and taking each opportunity to talk to or meet someone who has accomplished what I am setting out to do. Doing this interview with with Julia, someone I so admire, will be an experience for me to learn from and share with you. Stay tuned for Part III.