The Novelist by L. L. Barkat
At just over 100 pages, this novella is a quick, easy read and will appeal, especially, to writers and wannabe writers.
The story opens with Laura, the protagonist, typing, “The End,” leading the reader at first to believe that she has just completed a story. The truth, however, is that “The End” is all she can manage to come up with. Laura, a poet, has been challenged by a friend she only knows by way of Twitter to write a novel, and fast. The entire story covers one afternoon and evening during which Laura struggles with what to do with this challenge, and in trying to come up with a story to tell, she tells us her own story. There are lots of references to tea and poetry, neither of which particularly interest me, but the struggle to write is something that definitely does resonate with me. The author also manages to reference herself in this fictional story, as “that Barkat woman,” which I found amusing.
L. L. Barkat has written about writing, and I have a mind to take a crack at her Rumors of Water.