05/06/2013 08:10 am ET Updated Jul 06, 2013

The future is no fun: Self-publishing is the worst


Stick with me on this.

In 2001 when my first novel, "Slab Rat," was published and I was important for about eight weeks, I was asked to write three very short stories for a literary magazine. I believe the maximum amount of time I was allotted for each story was 10 minutes. Sometimes it takes me 10 minutes to get a sentence the way I want it, but I decided to do it. I forget what the other two stories were, but one of them stayed with me: It was about a couple who go to real estate open houses to steal medication.