A Novel Excerptby Joyce Carol Oates
Slowly Michaela has been going through the (badly mangled) copyedited manuscript of The Human Brain and Its Discontents.
Slowly, conscientiously, obsessively—in dread of overlooking mistakes or making mistakes of her own.
She’d assisted Gerard in his scholarly work in the past. Collating footnotes, proofreading galleys. Retyping pages with pleasure, for she’d genuinely enjoyed her husband’s prose. And yes, Michaela had perceived that immersing herself in Gerard McManus’s work would be a way into Gerard McManus’s heart, a way of making herself indispensable to him, as wife and closest friend; his first wife, she knew, had not much shared his intellectual interests and had become estranged from him over the years. But Michaela would not take Gerard McManus for granted; Michaela had other plans.