It’s also how you feel after you show up at a reading for your first book in Seattle, Washington and 70 chairs are set out for the crowd that never comes. But an old lady is sitting in row three by herself, and your wife says, “Go ahead, Peter. Read to us.” And you feel like a jerk with a microphone and all, so you scooch a chair up right in front of the old lady (who turns out to be a nice old lady) and read from your incredibly underwhelming memoir. Your wife, your cousin, your aunt, and your reader nod and ask empathetic questions. And at the end of the reading you don’t feel quite like heading for a5-gallon jug of pure alcohol anymore.
But back to Patrick Somerville’s “Thank You For Killing My Novel.” Salon.