I always felt an odd connection to Nora Ephron. It was odd in the sense that we were complete strangers that never met and had nothing in common other than a love for writing, film, New York, and a shared name. When I saw the breaking news headline last evening that she was “gravely ill” and not expected to make it through the night, I was immediately gutted. I didn’t know if I should pop in You’ve Got Mail or Sleepless in Seattle or read some of her witty articles in the New Yorker. I just wanted to feel that connection and smile like I had a few months ago when I read her book “I Feel Bad About My Neck.” Mere minutes later, it was reported that Nora had passed away at the tender age of 71 and one thing is for certain: she was taken too soon.
By penning classic films such as When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, and You’ve Got Mail, in addition to published essays, novels, cookbooks, and plays, her talent was immense and such a rare joy to see in Hollywood. How often do women shine in the business as writers or directors? Not often enough.
From paper to the silver screen to the theater, Nora’s voice always shined in her work and had that quintessential New York attitude to it. As a native herself who was a staple on the Upper East Side, especially at Elaine’s before its close last year, all of her work had an authentic feel. She made you feel like you were a part of the action, and that’s a testament to good writing.
I don’t know how she managed to be so good at everything she did but I will spend my life trying to imitate her by saying, “I’ll have what she’s having.”
RIP Nora Ephron
May 19, 1941 – June 26, 2012