I’ve been inspired by Brian’s comment from the previous thread — a lovely story about driving a tractor and learning that the John Deere 4440 has three pedals on the floor, none for the gas — to throw open this question: What’s your John Deere 4440 moment?
For our purposes, this will be defined as a discovery made via an experience that you found exciting or seminal.
An example: I was recently reading a memoir by Jen Lancaster in which she recalled going into a bookstore and seeing her book for the first time. She then went to the information desk to ask if there was anything she needed to do for her upcoming signing. She was surprised that the bookstore clerk was so calm, meeting a Real Life Author. She then realized that the experience was a first only for her; bookstore employees meet authors and hold signings on a weekly, if not daily basis*.
I’m still mulling mine and won’t be back until I get today’s quota of writing done. But go ahead, start searching for those pedals, trying to give this tractor some gas.
*Based on what I know about the writing life and writers, Lancaster had one of the briefest cases of First Author-itis on record. Most of us — note us of first-person plural — require the entire life span of the first book to get over ourselves.