Phone Message Transcript: June 18, 1997
[appearing on Anne's fan phone line]

"OK, impromptu, Anne Rice, very early AM, Wednesday, June 18. If the machine cuts me off you can still leave me a message after the beep, a one minute message. I'd be glad to hear anything you have to tell me about anything.

I just saw JERRY MAGUIRE. I don't go out of the house so i had to wait until it was available on tape and, man, hats off tp Tom Cruise. It was an absolutely fabulous performance. The editing of the film was brilliant, the acting, the script, all of it was just terrific and everybody in it was great, everybody, but Tom Cruise really just was fabulous and I think he drove that film, just like he drove RAIN MAN and like he drove INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE, and I just got to say he is really, really great. I hadn't been in any real contact with him in years. I have no idea whether or not he wants to play Lestat again. I am assuming he doesn't because if you can do that in JERRY MAGUIRE you know why go through the kind of thing he had to do to play Lestat. But anyway, he certainly did a good job. If you haven't ever seen the tape of INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE talk to me man, he carries the movie. He carries it, he and Kirsten Dunst and Jerry Maguire is really just a fabulous movie. It's just wonderfully sophisticated and wonderfully funny and his acting was great, just totally great.

OK, thank you for letting me know, those of you who have called, about Gary Oldman, that he has a new movie out. I don't go out of the house, I didn't know this and I might actually leave my house to see Gary Oldman. I would do anything for Gary Oldman. It's amazing how many of you have been calling saying that you would dream cast him as Lasher in the movie. You couldn't be more right on. First of all, Gary Oldman can play anybody; he's that kind of actor, he can play absolutely anybody. And you know I think he is among the greatest actors living today; for certain one of the most versatile in that he can be both the hero or character actor or anything. I just think he's fabulous. So, I am going to check out the movie just as soon as I can. I think it's called THE FIFTH ELEMENT, I don't know why I get on this line and don't have these facts right in front of me.

OK, let me tell you something else. You've asked about the violinist I mentioned. The violinist, who inspired me so much when I was writing VIOLIN, is a young woman named Leila Josefowicz. I'm going to spell it for you L-E-I-L-A, last name is Josefowicz, J-O-S-E-F-O-W-I-C-Z. OK, she has three CD's out. I can't mention her enough. I haven't even listened to this one I got here and I am going to listen to it, it's Bartok, Paganini, and I can not pronounce the third dude. OK, now what inspired me, the one that carried me through VIOLIN--and I mentioned this one in the text of VIOLIN was Tchaikovsky and Sebelius, the two concertos. She does them, just absolutely fantastic and now there's this new one, Bohemian Rhapsody. I love her, I mean this is a virtuoso with a genius like the great Isaac Stern. I mean, she's really got it. She's not just like Hemingway said, you know young girl, painting young girl poetry or whatever you remember. I don't know if you remember that line, it was in CROSS THE RIVER AND THROUGH THE TREES. This man was praising this girl, that was her answer she said young girl poetry, young girl painting, and I know what she meant. She meant that it was very flashy and so forth. Well, there are a lot of musicians that go through that because they are young they get a lot of attention but they don't necessarily have great gifts. Leila Josefowicz is fabulous. She is absolutely fabulous. She's absolutely fabulous and you can go into any store, any classical music store and tell them the name is something like, remember any way you can, Leila and Joseph and you know make up combinations. I really recommend her. I don't know how old she is but she's just terrific. Apparently she was a prodigy but they held her under wraps.

Now, I've been in contact with her agent, being the wild person that I am, and there is a chance that I can get Leila Josefowicz to come to New Orleans the weekend of our Halloween signing and our November Coven Party and I'm gonna try to do it. I am going to try to swing it. I think I can and if I do, I am going to ask her, humbly, to play at St. Elizabeth's where I can seat about 450 people, so it will have to be the first 450 people that come, you know. But anyway, if you are planning to be in town that weekend, I'll keep you posted on this. I mean, it is not firm by any means, but think of all three nights. Friday, we have the signing all day, October 31. Then November 1 will be the Coven Party of the fan club and I don't know details about that, you have to call them really because they are a separate entity, and then the third night I will try my damnedest to get Leila Josefowicz to play for us at St. Elizabeth's Orphanage in the biggest room that I have, which holds 450 people.

Anyway, OK, that's all my good news. I like your calls a lot. I almost handed in PANDORA, the short novel. However, I got so involved in the history of ancient Rome and the details of that time and the writings of Lucretius and the writings of Cicero, and the things about Rome that I hadn't known. Now, as I go back to proofreading it I am rewriting it so it's taking a little longer but I hope I'll have it out of here by Friday but, man, I just, you know, I've really dug deep into Pandora and I'm totally cool with it. I am really, really happy with what's going on. There's nothing like sitting there and letting it go. I think sometimes the fact that you can get your agony out onto paper is one of the greatest gifts God ever gave me. Sometimes I think evolution didn't plan for us to live into our fifties and be as youthful and strong and active as we are in our fifties and that's why we get so depressed. You know, by the time you're fifty-six or fifty-five or whatever I am, you can't hide from anything anymore. Everything is there, it's out there, you just can't kid yourself about death any more, you can't kid yourself about anything and you know it gets tough, and for me the remedy is always writing; it's pouring that into some kind of coherent statement in a book aiming to make that book better than entertainment, aiming to make it something that you are never going to forget, something that you are going to love and putting all the questions and conflicts and pulling out of myself the best language I can get. Anyway, I am having a ball with PANDORA. I think this rewriting is very, very good. You can ruin a novel this way by doing this rewriting it, rewriting it, rewriting it. I'm not going to do it. It's going out Friday, but at the moment its proving very, very fruitful. And as I told you I want to go right into ARMAND which will be the real sequel to MEMNOCH THE DEVIL and I have some great news today. Great news. My sister, Alice O'Brien Borchardt is a writer. I've mentioned her before to you. She has written two novels, DEVOTED and BEGUILED. She's been very, very successful. She's just fabulous. She's older than me and in a way she's a mentor to me and the first audience of my writings when I was a kid. Very eccentric, very high IQ, terrible student in school because she was a genius, you know, D student, like D as in damned, and everybody, you know, thought we were weird. We were the weird O'Brien sisters at Redemptorist High in the early fifties. She graduated, by the way, in '58. Everybody called her Susie O'Brien. Anyway, I got this call from her today and she has just signed an enormous contract for three novels with a fabulous publisher. I just started screaming. I wish I could tell my mom and dad. I wish, the crazy O'Brien girls, man, we turned it into something. We did something. We succeeded somewhere and I'm so happy for her. I'll give you more detail when the publisher firms it all up.

But anyway, the first novel under this contract is already written. She's completed it; it's called THE SILVER WOLF and then she has to write two more but the figures are great and the figures are wonderful, not because she needs money or because money is everything. It's wonderful because it means a commitment from the publisher to really get her books out there and that people will read them and she will know some of what I have known, you know, which has sustained me through many dark nights, and that's very simply that your reading my books and you understand them. You know, we all know we write these books for nothing and the publishers know that but somehow or another we trick them into paying us. I don't really know how it works because we would really do the same thing for almost nothing. We have to do it. It just comes out of us, but now Alice has really scored. I do recommend BEGUILED and DEVOTED and I'll have more facts about this. This was a real big sale, man. It was the kind where the newspaper comes out and knocks on your door and says is this true what we're hearing about you in New York. Her name is Alice O'Brien Borchardt. Let me mention again that we went to Redemptorist together, she graduated in '58. Everybody called her Susie then. She's two years older than me, and I was the only one at her graduation at St. Alphonsus Church because our family had just decamped to Texas where my dad had been moved and I was going to meet Stan Rice and get married and didn't go. But anyway, I remember her graduation in St. Alphonsus Church and I remember kissing her when she came down the aisle, and high school was very rough for us. We were real weirdos, really, really weirdos, and outcasts and subject of ridicule and she always had her nose in a book and her glasses were always flipping down her nose and she was really regarded as Crazy Susie, and actually she was very much beloved, and so I know there are a lot of people out still in New Orleans who probably remember crazy Susie O'Brien who went to Redemptorist. I just want them to know, she scored big, man. I mean, she knows how to write. She can't type. She does everything by hand and then a typist does it. It's incredible. If I had to write that way, I would lose my mind. I'm an Olympic typist on a computer and I write as fast as I talk and I couldn't go down to a hand pace. But anyway, she scored big today, and I am so happy for her. I inundated her with flowers, 200 roses off to Houston, and I just want the whole world to know because it's a victory of creativity; it's a victory of endurance; it's a victory of eccentricity. I mean, we were really, really weirdos as I said. I would say, I can't speak for her, but I would say we were total failures as American teenagers. We just couldn't get it right. I know I couldn't, and she was always way ahead of me mentally and she can read for one thing which I can't read very well. I have a real Attention Deficient Disorder but she can plunge into a book and just swallow it whole and suddenly she started writing a few years ago. She must be fifty-seven now, because I'm fifty-five, and stories just pour out of her, beautiful prose. I mean, great [cut off]"