Mitch Albom, the creative mind behind the acclaimed Tuesdays With Morrie, brings us another anecdote in self discovery with his latest novel, The Timekeeper. The Timekeeper is a savory piece of literature with plenty of candied imagination, sprinkled with a sense of inspirational verve. Better than a bowl of chicken soup for the soul, this book exemplifies an entire five course meal made by the connoisseur of storytelling, Mr. Albom.
Being quite the paramour myself of Albom’s narrative, I was able to snag an interview with the esteemed author in Costa Mesa, California at Barnes & Noble. After Albom was finished with his book signing and the fan’s praising and probing dissipated, I was able to ask Albom some pressing questions concerning the topics in his new book.
Check out the interview below!
EN: How would you define time?
MA: I think it is a precious gift from god that has a very unique quality. It is limited. In God’s infinite wisdom he created this entity but didn’t tell us how long we’re going to have with it which forces us to use it wisely because if you don’t you may end up with very little of it and have blown every day. I think it’s a brilliantly conceived way of existing.
EN: Do you think most people take our time on earth for granted?
MA: Yes. I’m convinced of it. I think the more we go along and the faster we go, the more people take it for granted. I think it’s funny because we have more of it then we ever had but nobodies satisfied. Everybody wants to live even longer then. I think that’s because they don’t really appreciate the time they have.They just want MORE of it. It’s like not stopping to taste the food, just keep lopping it on the plate.
EN: When time is wasted there seems to be a sense of regret that people struggle with. Do you have any personal regrets?
MA: Sure. Everybody does. I wish I had recognized how good of a wife I had seven years into our courtship. Fortunately she stuck around. Morrie tried to teach me not to wallow in regret, but to change the regrets I can still do something about. I regret that I didn’t spend more of my time when I was younger helping people. But I am doing it now. And as long as you get smarter, its not a regret, it’s a lesson.
EN: In The Timekeeper you state,“…it’s never too late or too soon, everything happens when its suppose to be,” could we presume you are a believer in fate or free will?
MA: I’m a believer that there is kind of a sense to it all and you don’t understand the sense of it until the end. It’s funny how things that you really don’t want to have happen, ‘…this is terrible—or this is too soon or too great!…’ When you look back on your life , if that wouldn’t of happened earlier I wouldn’t of been able to do that, if I wouldn’t of had this negative happen I wouldn’t of had this positive happen. I think we end up embrancing the life we create if we’re happy or satisfied, we see the beauty of it. We see the symmetry of it. It’s like being in the middle of a circle trying to see the outside of it, you can’t. It’s when you have to get outside of it that you can see the circle.
EN: What do you think Morrie would have to say about your new book?
MA: He would say, “very imaginative,” and I think the message of it is very much in line with what Morrie was about. In some ways, I’ve said it before, in some ways I’m sort of still writing Tuesdays With Morrie. But I think he would like it, anything people could read and hopefully have a better existence afterward he would of liked. He was about helping people.
EN: You emphasis in your new book the importance of appreciating what you have instead of what you don’t. What are you most grateful for?
MA: My wife, family, health, the creativity that God gave me, the older people in my life who have influenced me and the natural beauty that I see. Also, the ability I’ve been given to learn from my mistakes, cause I know a lot of people who never learn from their mistakes. I do make a lot of mistakes but I can say I have learned from them. I don’t know that everybody is given that gift. I’m grateful for graditude. I find being grateful the proper state to be in. In Have A Little Faith, there was a moment where I asked the rabbi what’s the secret to happiness? He replied, “Be satisfied. And be grateful.” So I try to stay in a state of graditude as often as I can because I think it’s connected to being happy.