This was a book proposition from nearly a decade ago from one of the affiliate members of the Fun Social Nihilism umvirate, though all the minor publishing concerns passed on the pitch. Why? Why this abysmal rate of project failure on the part of the umvirate of Fun Social Nihilism though the go-go 80s, the grunge 90’s, and through the Bushite 00s? A major forensic auditing reveals that there were multiple main flaws with this promising proposal. The author of Quick Pan-Frying Recipes of Today’s Famous Young Authors, was, in fact ,a practicing social nihilist. He thought all these authors, every one of them, were, in addition to being what he had so long yearned, studied, and attempted to be, to a man or woman, fatuous.
Writing, even by today’s famous young authors, draws the clinically obsessed, the minutely self-absorbed, the inter-personally crippled idolators of the artiste manque. Who should give a damn about Ann Beattie’s tendentious recipe for “Family-style Snap Peas,” served atop a bed of limp wide Pennsylvania Dutch noodles? Or the auto-late David Foster Wallace’s excruciatingly footnoted, over-annotated recombinant notes for saute’d blankfish with amphetamine crumb toppings? The respondents had all sensed a new commercial venue for their fiction, allying with the nascent Top Chef phenomenon that drove the millenials to such dazed foodie conservatism, but there was not going to be much in the way of seminars and state-fair appearances by Richard Powers, Jonathan Saffron Foer, Mary Karr, George Saunders, or any of the lesser Bread Loafians.
Who gives a damn what they do, in self-infatuated haste, with potato chips and tuna fish in their non-tick, dorm-room reject frying pans? Were they to be the rock stars of the lit biz, instructing their devotees on all the low arts of quik, flavorful, semi-healthy fusion food? No. There was only fatuity in the concept of the Famous Young Author, from food table to typing garret. What could they, the quik-pan-frying Famous Young Authors, put on your table that would any relationship to the greater social world of doubt and stasis, tremor and antipathy, contest and ambivalence?