howtheduck raised a good point on his blog today when he discussed the ramifications of the only people who seem interested in Mike's book being the Pattersons and their hangers-on. It may well be that Lynn does not intend the novel to be the insane success that Mike's dreams would make it. His path may lead elsewhere for the simple reason that to be a big-time successful novelist, he'd have to spend far too much time away from home. To a woman with as great a love of being tied down to the familiar as Lynn seems to have, a nomadic experience like that is the worst thing in the world. Fortunately, she's provided Michael with a way out of that horror; he writes a column about the ups and downs of suburban life for the weekly paper Elly used to work for. If the strip continued, we could well expect to see a forty-year old Mike happily slaving away at his keyboard writing his weekly column and good-naturedly shaking his head about his delusions of literary grandeur. A Mike with a day-to-day job like that would be a far better son than the selfish fool who wanted to go on the road all the time.