I have a couple of stories that I need to share here, because only my fellow Outlander fanatics will truly appreciate them. The first story is from my husband. Last week, he went to the doctor and while returning his paperwork and clipboard to the front desk, he noticed that the receptionist was reading a book by Diana Gabaldon.
Husband: Oh, I see you’re reading one of the Outlander books?
Receptionist: Yeah! Have you read them?
Husband: No, but my wife is obsessed with them, so I kinda feel like I’ve read them.
Receptionist: They are so great.
Husband: My wife carved a pumpkin that was a big hit with all the Outlander fans she talks to online – she has a blog- actually, her blog and pumpkin recently made it onto Diana Gabaldon’s website. You should check it out.
*At this point, he is called back to see the doctor. After his check-up, he speaks with a different lady behind the front desk and is making his way out of the office, when he hears this…*
Receptionist: Oh! Sir! SIR! WAIT!
Husband: *walks back to the front desk*
Receptionist: OH. MY. GOD.
*In my husband’s words, she was “attempting to suppress a high-pitched squeal, while slightly flailing her arms and trying to maintain a professional decorum.”*
Receptionist: I saw the pumpkin! Please tell your wife I said thank you, thank you for that pumpkin! Oooohhhh! That just made my day!
Husband: *smiling* Sure thing.
Aww, my hubs is going around promoting the Outlander series! As a side note, I asked him which book she was reading and he said “I don’t know, it was this ugly neon green color.” HA!
My mom was at the beauty shop, getting her hair done, when the topic of conversation switched to vampires and then Outlander. (Just to set the stage: picture a Southern beauty salon with a hairdresser named Diane, who calls everyone “Honey,” “Sweetie,” “Baby,” or the like, and doesn’t get in a hurry for anything. Diane’s son was working as a graphic designer on the 4th and 5th Twilight movies that were being filmed in Louisiana.)
Mom: My daughter loved Twilight, but she likes the Sookie Stackhouse series better.
Diane: I haven’t heard of that one. What’s it about?
Mom: Vampires. The show True Blood is based on those books, so I’m assuming they are a bit darker and more adult than the Twilight books.
*Let me just say that I forced my mom to read Twilight during the height of my obsession and when prodded for her opinion on it, she said “Well, honestly I wish they would just go ahead and get it on with each other! This back and forth is driving me crazy!”*
Mom: Now she’s in love with a new series though, it’s called Outlander. She bought it…
*At this point, an older lady looks up from a book and interrupts my mom…*
Older lady: Oooooohhhhhhhhhh! I’ve read the Outlander books! They. Are. Amazing!
Mom: Ha! You sound just like my daughter! Have you read them all?
Older lady: (who has now relocated to fully join the conversation) Oh yeah. They are the best books I’ve ever read. I am DYING waiting for book 8 to come out! It’s coming out in March though, so I’m just biding my time until then.
My mom called me later that night to relay the story and to tell me that book 8 is coming out in March. I informed her that it hasn’t even been written yet and it will be years before book 8 comes out. Then she says to me “Well, that lady seemed to be a pretty big fan…I’d bet she knows what she’s talking about.” I had to act very offended that my mom was questioning my level of fandom and my knowledge of when the next book is coming out.
And finally, I was at Barnes and Noble this past weekend, just browsing, when I overheard a woman at the information desk asking about Outlander. Of course, my ears perked up instantly and I walked to the end of the aisle to get a glimpse. The clerk checked in her computer and informed her that it was in the fiction section, and they began walking in that direction. I actually really wanted to go over to this girl and gush about how amazing the book is and tell her about Jamie Fraser and how she will never be the same, etc, etc, but when I rounded the corner and saw her pick up the book…the way that she was tenderly cupping it (clearly already coveting it), with a big, goofy grin on her face, I realized that she already had insider info on this series. It made me smile.
I’ve seen Diana G. describe her books as “word-of-mouth books” since they are so hard to describe or categorize and these stories reminded me of that notion. I actually found the series all by myself, I was reading the USA Today Top 150 best sellers list and saw one tiny little line that said An Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon and described it as “a Scottish husband and his time-travelling wife in the 1700’s, latest in a series” (or something along those lines) and for whatever reason, that little sentence spoke to me! I went to the used book store and found books 2,3, and 4 and bought Outlander new (albeit on sale). And the rest, as they say, is history!
Do you have any funny Outlander word-of-mouth stories? I’d love to hear about them!