Friday, June 24, 2011

Small Towns

I have been a Quaker since 1977.  That’s a long time, and I’m the first to admit, I don’t feel like a very good Quaker.  I’m a fast Quaker, not a slow one.  By slow, one might mean Quakers who dress in the traditional black and white and live simple lives.  I’ve never thought anything was particularly simple, although I’ve learned a lot from Quakers.  I’m more patient and willing to wait for a way to open.  Those things count when you’re a writer.  Here I am, writing.  How long did that take?
I had the good fortune to live in a small Quaker community surrounded by some really good people.  Many were Quakers, many were not.  Small towns are a special place for me.  Gregory David Roberts said in his novel, Shantaram, “Every city in the world has a village in its heart.  You will never understand the city unless you understand the village.  Go there.”  In my novel, The Quaker Café, I want to take you there.  It’s a great place, but life is far from simple, even for Quakers.