Behold, a book:


The news

Los Angeles. In an apartment building, a sad adult pauses to read Google News during a busy working day at the home office. He reads the following: Headline: Popular Japanese biker turns out to be 50-year-old man using face app. Revelation makes fans love him more....

How to destroy a love of literature and what to do about it

A lecture hall. An aged professor stands at the front of a class full of sleeping students. In the following way, the professor destroys what love of literature yet burns in the bosom of his poor students. Professor: Next, let’s discuss The Goddess of Spring. The...

How to be an expat

American: Hi, neighbor! I see you are going fishing today. If you catch an extra fish, I would love to join you for a fish fry! Neighbor: Pay me twenty dollars. Neighbor’s father: Great job, son; great job monetizing that conversation. American: What is wrong with you...

Protorufus

This is the opening scene from a protoRUFUS play I wrote in 2012. CURTAIN Morning. A bedroom in a cottage in rural America. RUFUS enters hurriedly, nearly naked, and a little hung over. RUFUS. I think no one saw me. How did I fall asleep under the kitchen table again?...

The Bee dialogue

Once upon a time there was a little girl who lived in a stone house. One day her uncle called her to help him in the garden. Uncle: Teresa, take this letter to the bank for me. Teresa: No? Uncle: Come on. Don't be difficult. Teresa: I thought you wanted my help in the...

The Bee prose

Here is the first chapter of a story that I wrote in 2019: Once upon a time there was a little girl who lived in a stone house. This stone house wasn't one of those cold, dark houses from the middle ages, nor was it a new modern house with mildew and weird windows;...

In which an apprentice talks to an old master

Apprentice: I can't finish anything I start; I don't understand my problem. Master: Can you describe the problem? Apprentice: I have a clear view of the portfolio I want to create; I begin; then the work unfolds in the wrong direction; I become frustrated; I stop to...

Oedipus

This is the beginning of a play I wrote in 2012. Oedipus stands in the middle of the apartment with a bloody knife wound in his leg; blood drips on the floor. He is breathing hard. He wears nothing more than his underwear. Jocasta lies in bed asleep. Oedipus: Jocasta?...

In which a boy talks to his mother about the Lord of the Rings

A young boy finishes the Lord of the Rings and lays the book down on the side table next to the sofa and begins talking to someone in the next room. Boy: I'm surprised that Tolkien wrote such bland prose. His vocabulary is amazing of course; it must have been. He...

Shadow and Bone

A writer named Leigh Bungalow sits in a news conference and answers questions about her books and a recent Netflix adaptation. Leigh. Thanks for coming today-- A journalist raises her hand and interrupts. Journalist. If I could? I have a question. Leigh. Yes?...

The Happy Jew

A. I have a recurring dream about being a happy Jew. Silence. A. I said, I have a recurring dream about being a happy Jew. B. I heard you; I heard you. I don't have anything to say. My mind is a blank; I'm waiting for more information. A. I have a Jewish wife. Jewish...

In which a tourist talks to a manager about gardening

A tourist enters reception and approaches attendant. Tourist: There is a man spraying my doorstep with Glyphosate. Under Portuguese law, all chemical treatments must accompany a written notice posted in sight of the public announcing the presence of the chemical and...

I don’t smoke–like the above photo suggests–, but everything else is true.