Fan Mail and Prune Cake

I love going to the mailbox. Expectation builds as I approach, excitement in anticipating what has been placed in that little box with my name on it. In this day of electronic communication, I get a lot of email from readers, and I love (and answer) every single one. But there's something special about receiving an actual letter from someone who has taken the time to write to me by hand, address an envelope with my name on it, and spend $0.49 to send it on its way to me.

Today I received a letter from a dear lady named Yvonne. She was writing to tell me she'd just finished reading Prime Suspect in large print, and loved the story so much she had to sit down and write to me. She identified herself as "79 years young," and said she and her husband celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary this summer. She told me how her papa named her after a character in a romance novel, and how her mother loved Louis L'Amour novels. She loves them too, along with another author (whose name I couldn't make out in her scrawling script), and she was adding my name to her list. Wow! To be in the company of Louis L'Amour and what's-his-name!

Yvonne said she wanted to share something special with me because I shared something special with her through my book. She included a recipe for prune cake that has been a favorite in her family for several generations. The recipe is written in purple ink on a piece of lined notebook paper, and ends with, "Let sit 10 minutes. Cool on rack. Turn out - and Enjoy!"

You know what I'm going to do? I'm going to make Yvonne's special prune cake, slice off a large piece, and sit down at the table to pen a letter to her while I enjoy that cake. I hope my note to her brings her as much joy as hers did to me.