Bogging down in J. Michael Lennon’s biography of Norman Mailer, A Double Life, just about the point where I’d have expected. The Naked and the Dead is a bestseller and Mailer’s trying to cope with his newly acquired celebrity—mostly by sleeping with as many women as he can find time to—hanging out in Hollywood, looking to sell the screen rights and struggling to come up with an idea for his next novel.

Which puts him in the same position he’ll be in for the rest of his life. A celebrity writer whose fame and reputation rest on his being a great novelist but who has no more great novels in him to write.