Here are the rules.  Here is the excerpt of the week:

I spent years on that book, doing my honest best. My first novel is an extension of me. It reveals a few personal beliefs and unanswered questions, some nameable, some that remain ambiguous or unconscious. It revealed an appreciation, even love, for the South and its people that I thought I didn’t possess. The Mercy of Thin Air shares my lifeblood as much as any organ or limb. It is not a fallen hair, a trimmed fingernail. The word-made-flesh has a spine holding it together. My reaction to the bad review was a feeling of negation, that what I wrote, even I, didn’t matter.


Ergo, a matter of ego.


Almost four years later, I’ve accepted the extremes. I realize that I gave way too much power to the Dark Side. The Shadow came to call. It was the umbra opposite my fiery effort to finish the novel and get published. The review incarnated my worst fears, hidden and denied. My work—therefore, I—was unoriginal, talentless, ridiculous.


[Who am I? Read more and find out!]

Last week: Edith Hamilton, author of Mythology.

The Nervous Breakdown is an online culture magazine and literary community. It was founded in 2006. Our masthead can be found here.

5 responses to “Who Am I — 102211”

  1. Zara Potts says:

    The gorgeous Miss Ronlyn. Please tell me I win a trip to go see her now?!

  2. Gloria Harrison says:

    I don’t know who the guy in the photo is, but he looks like what I would imagine a lumber jack would look like if you bathed him and put him in a suit – complete with the look of discomfort and surprise on his face.

  3. Bram Stoker? Bram Stoker.

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