“Yes, she’s hot,” said the Portly Producer, over a boozy brunch, as the Literary Man flipped through a young author’s debut novel, finally arriving at her sultry jacket-photo. “But she’s author hot,” the Portly Producer continued, possibly gaining weight with every second that passed. “Author hot. No offense, bud, but authors aren’t quite known for their looks. Now, take my industry, for instance: no author alive will ever be as hot as Penelope Cruz.”
Author Hot: what could it possibly mean? The Portly Producer seemed to imply that the phrase Author Hot qualified a conventional hotness, that it was somehow a lesser form of hotness.
However, in the Literary Man’s experience Author Hot is a specific type of hot, intelligent eyes, reserved mouth, knowing ears. Wondering if he was alone in this belief — that there were plenty of hot authors in the world — the Literary Man sought the counsel of the Epic Poet, who had effectively written his dissertation on the Hottest Authors of Our Time.
“Your overweight friend is half right,” said the Epic Poet in room 1612 of the Parker Meridien, as he poured martinis into two chilled cocktail glasses. “The phrase Author Hot, as I’ve come to understand it, does mean that the author
is somehow less hot. Still hot, but slightly less hot than someone universally worshiped, like Penelope Cruz. But you’re right too, in a way,” he said. “There is a specific type of Author Hot, a special literary hotness that only authors can achieve. Poet hot. Novelist hot. Author hot. It’s a specific type. No actress or singer can ever really look Author Hot without having written at least two novels.”
The Literary Man knew exactly what he meant. The Literary Lady, for instance, has a certain je ne sais quoi about her, with dark blonde hair, French lips, fashionable glasses, a healthy appetite, and the unusual — if titillating — habit of quoting (screaming) passages from Milton’s Paradise Regained in bed: And high prediction, henceforth I expose!
With this in mind, the Literary Man has set out to nominate the Top Ten Hottest Authors, so that he might better understand whether Author Hot, as a phrase, should be stricken from the Literary Man’s lexicon, or whether it should be cherished as a specialized form of beauty achieved only be those choosing literature as their art.
So, without further mish-mash, we proudly announce the Top Ten Hottest Authors of Our Time
Hot Author Number Ten
Author of two best-selling memoirs, Barack Obama is better known as the Leader of the Free World. He published his third book, OF THEE I SING, last fall, which currently has 129 five star Amazon ratings out of 141 total ratings. Amazing. The man can do it all, and he is, without a doubt, extremely handsome.
Hot Author Number Nine
Karen is the author of highly acclaimed short story collection ST LUCY’S HOME FOR GIRLS RAISED BY WOLVES and SWAMPLANDIA!, which features one of the greatest Wolf / Alligator fight scenes ever written. Karen is also the tallest member of this list, clocking in at a staggering six foot six.
Hot Author Number Eight
Flannery is (unfortunately) dead, but nevertheless attractive in memoriam. She’s also the author of the legendary short story collection A GOOD MAN IS HARD TO FIND.
Hot Author Number Seven
Marisha Pessl: almost too authorial.
Hot Author Number Six
Jhumpa Lahiri: who says looks don’t count?
Hot Author Number Five
Harriet Beecher Stowe: it seems people must have been getting it on in the nineteenth century, but it’s hard to imagine with pictures like this. Still, definitely Author Hot.
Hot Author Number Four
Zadie Smith: very much the Literary World’s “author hot” item for the past decade.
Hot Author Number Three
Hot Author Number Two
Paul Auster: probably only published because of his total Author Hotness, not Just Plain Hot, mind you, but completely and undeniably tortured and artistic looking.
Hot Author Number One
Sylvia Plath: the hottest author of our time. After years of battling depression, Plath took her own life in 1963, not before securing her place in the history of American letters with her Collected Poems, which posthumously won the Pulitzer Prize. Here’s to you, Sylvia Plath.