Eating Authors: R. R. Virdi

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R. R. Virdi

Welcome to May, or as I call it, Crazy Month.

Every year I say I’m going to cut back on my travel, and then opportunities fall in my lap. This month it’s two trips. First, next week I’ll be heading to Los Angeles for the annual Nebula Conference and my sixth trip to the nominees’ circle. This is my first time up for Best Novelette, so who knows? I’ll fly home the Sunday after the banquet, arriving just enough past midnight to make it count as Monday. Some time on Wednesday, I’ll get on a longer flight and head to Beijing, China, where I get to be one of the Guests of Honor at Another Planet Science Fiction Convention (aka APSFcon). I’ll linger in Beijing for a few days after the convention. Watch my social media feed for pics of me on the Great Wall and other touristy venues.

But before any of that can happen, I need to run another author’s most memorable meal past you. The timing being what it is, it seemed appropriate to introduce you to R. R. Virdi, one half of the team of Wijeratne and Virdi, whose novelette “Messenger” is vying with mine for THAT big, shiny, paperweight next week.

In addition to his recent Nebula nom, Ronnie has twice been a finalist for the Dragon Award. He has two urban fantasy series out there, The Grave Report and The Books of Winter. This past March he expanded into the sub-genre of space westerns with Star Shepherd, which should resonate with fans of Firefly, Han Solo, and even a bit of Cowboy Bebop.

If you’re going to be in L.A. for the conference, come on by. We’ll be drinking milkshakes together.

LMS: Welcome, Ronnie. Spare a few words regarding your most memorable meal.

RRV: Honestly, the most memorable meal of my life happened this year a few days before my birthday as an early treat. A dear friend took me out to a surprise birthday dinner along with my hero, Jim Butcher. They treated me to an amazing night out. It was a little hole in the wall, a bit literally, as we had to enter through a narrow phone booth like entrance and go underground. The place was Alice in Wonderland themed. Down the rabbit hole we went to find a charming little place. You couldn’t ask for a better place to eat if you were a book lover. Well, maybe an abandoned library, but part of that idea seems a bit sacrilegious. Maybe sacrilicious? Anyways, I ended up ordering a rabbit pot pie. It seemed fitting. I know the idea of rabbit might turn people off, but I was a French student in high-school and learned long ago that Peter Cottontail can be taste pretty nice.

Dangerous Ways

A perfect flaky and buttery crust gave way to this thick and creamy pie filled with tender rabbit meat. I tore it apart. But it wasn’t just the food. It was the company. I had people really close to me, and the person I look up to most in the world. We shared hilarious talk. Wonderful creative ideas. And, I got to celebrate my birthday with people who cared about me, believed in me. That meant the world to be honest. Everyone has a different story. Mine, for most of it, meant forgoing my birthday, at best, maybe just ordering something out to sort of pacify a family that’s never been to supportive of my dreams and ambitions. Here? I got to spend it with people that wanted to see me succeed. And at the end of the night, I was told a secret, something I’m still holding on to… that’s a dream come true. Even if it hasn’t happened yet.

I’ll always remember that Alice in Wonderland restaurant, that rabbit pie, the people, and what happened there. Best meal, and the best birthday.

Thanks, Ronnie. Who doesn’t love a bit of rabbit on their birthday? Now, about that secret. You can tell me…

Next Monday: Another author and another meal!

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