You Can't Eat Books
by Barry Graham
A few years ago I read a personal essay by the author of a popular book in the “misery memoir” genre. In the essay, the author described their lowest moment as being when they were jogging past a McDonald's and saw the employees watching and laughing. The author was horrified that “even” people working at McDonald's felt able to mock them. If only those proles knew who they were laughing at!
This kind of grandiosity is, in my experience, more common among authors than not. I've long suspected that the reason authors are so self-important is that we know how unimportant our work really is.
If there's anything positive about the pandemic, it's that it brings home whose work really matters. You can't eat books.