Colson Hides the Hurt

I’ve long been an admirer of Colson Whitehead (seriously, check out The Intuitionist), and not just because I shamelessly steal his ‘you know you’re a New Yorker when’ line all the time (“You know you’re a New Yorker when you can look at a place in the city and say ‘that used to be something else'” (I may not be remembering this exactly, but it’s kinda like that)). Today he’s got a nice bit in the Times about being a Brooklyn writer. Favorite part:

A lot of my writer friends live near me, and that makes people think we just hang around with one another in cafes, trading work and discussing Harper’s and what not. But I rarely see them. We’re home working. I mean, sure, when I was feeling a bit stabby I could always ring up Norm Mailer and he’d talk me down (I miss you, brudda), but that was the exception. Every couple of years, I’ll ask a friend or two to read a manuscript, and it happens. You can see it in their eyes. “I hope it’s better than his last one. Or at least shorter.” I know what they’re thinking because that’s what I’m thinking when they ask me. “How much is this friendship worth, in terms of page count?”

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