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BOOK REVIEW: Nora Ephron - The Last Interview

Posted by Kirsten Lowis on 1 September 2016
BOOK REVIEW: Nora Ephron - The Last Interview

BOOK: Nora Ephron - The last Interview
Reviewed by: Kirsten Lowis

It's my birthday month, and I'm turning 40 and my life is nothing like I planned it to be....  That sentence sat lonely in an otherwise blank Word document for hours until I could work out where to go to from there. It's not that there isn't an answer but it seemed like a fool's errand to even try.  So I'm going to write about something other than my birthday - it's Nora Ephron.

The truth is, Nora Ephron is a woman who impacted my life more than any other writer has.  In 2012, when my own world was falling apart, she passed away.  I was devastated.  I was (am) her biggest fan and I know that my love for writing and reading was inspired by her work, and in particular the "Shop around the Corner".  I have a red carpet's worth of her one-line luminaries, my favourite of which is "Everything is copy". I didn't really understand what that quote meant until I read this gorgous book on her last interview, which I picked up from the Whileaway Bookstore and Cafe in Port Douglas. It means that if something bad happened, or someone did something to hurt her feelings "Everything is copy" reminded her to "remember this, and one day you'll use it."

My fellow Nora Ephron fans will relish the "Everything Is Copy's" jaunt through her life. She experienced many big lessons, of which included divorce (twice and third time lucky), ageing, love, bliss, and bitterness: and whether it was the simple indignity of a bad outfit, a life-changing moment such as a marriage or even divorce, that was Nora's essence of Everything Is Copy.  She used the good, the bad and the very bad lessons of life as her springboard.  She must have been a dazzling person to be around, having directed, sreenwritten and produced so many wonderful, self-effacing, sharp and remarkable movies, such as Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail and Julia & Julia (a love letter to her greatest passions: New York, Paris, food, writing, her sister, and her husband.) I'm sad she's gone, and I read this biography with a lump in my throat. 

I think at the end of my Nora's life she believed the things we want to keep and the people we love are not copy. Copy is the stuff we lose, are willing to give away or that have been taken from us. She saw everything is copy as a means of controlling the story - hmmm, I can relate to that.

Well, after a lifetime of learning things about myself from Nora Ephron this book gave a clue to how she lived and loved.  It showed that it was her ability as a stranger to write in a voice that befriended me, that is perhaps the greatest lesson of all.

"Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it's a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it's a way of making contact with someone else's imagination after a day that's all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss." - Nora Ephron

Kirsten LowisAuthor: Kirsten Lowis
About: As the Founding Director of Zoom in Business - a subscription-based network and magazine, NQ Business Sales - a business sales firm based in North Queensland, and Bizrich - a business valuation firm, Kirsten has learnt from the trenches and brings a wealth of personal and professional experience and knowledge to our members. With over 13 years as a franchisee, retailer and start-up business owner, Kirsten has worked closely with fellow coaches, hundreds of clients and the best facilitators in Australia who have run their own business or have experience in running a business and teams. Kirsten’s extensive knowledge and experience as a Registered Business Valuer and Licenced Business Broker helps our readers and members improve awareness of the state of the market, understanding and confidence in buying, growing, valuing and selling their business, while connecting them with local and international news stories and experts to create a capable and dynamic business network.
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