Best of “Hi, I’m a Writer in a Movie”

M. Lynx Qualey

Staff Writer

M. Lynx Qualey is the founder of, a website that brings together translators, authors, publishers, critics, academics, and readers around discussions of Arabic literature in translation. She works as a book critic, reader, editor, and ghostwriter. You can follow her at @arablit.

The meme all started on a Tuesday, when Prof. Rory Turnbull tweeted: “Hello, I’m a professor in a movie, I only reach the main point of my lecture right as class is ending. Then I yell at students about the reading / homework as they leave.”

Steven Crain with lots and lots of copies of his book.

Twitter was soon awash with “Hi, I’m an X in a movie.” Naturally, these included tweets from novelists, critics, editors, and agents.

A number of writer tweets focused on how a-m-a-z-i-n-g literary events seem in the movies. Like, first off, there are always people in attendance. In the movies, novelists never end up at literary events with just three lonely souls in the audience.

My favorite book-event-in-a-movie was actually on TV. It’s the reading that comes late in Haunting of Hill House. If I remember correctly, people pay $30 to come see Steven Crain at a bookstore. $30! Plus, instead of reading from his book, Steven mostly argues with his sister Nell. And the whole bookstore is filled entirely with Steven’s books! They don’t even stock anyone else’s books.

Also, of course, there are fancy cardboard cutouts. Cardboard cutouts are a big thing for novelists in movies.

The Amazing Book Events

So, okay, Steven Crain did have that one wildly successful book. Off its back, he not only sponsored his own lavish lifestyle, but that of his sibs. This is a trope many meme authors noted.

Little Writing, Lots of $

Also: Novelists are not only super-rich, but they also solve REAL crimes.

While not actually writing, movie novelists do seem to occupy their time with shenanigans.

And as Dr. Claire notes, many movie authors also seem to write REALLY BAD PROSE.

The Editor in the Movie

Being an editor in a movie isn’t nearly as fun as being a novelist, unfortunately.

The Literary Agent in the Movie

And who even knows what a literary agent does all day. Drink cocktails, probably.

The Writer in Peril

It seems Max has watched only that one movie.

The Freelancer in the Movie

Sadly, I never appear on the silver screen.