King Lear

Remember two Marches ago when people on the internet were talking about how Shakespeare wrote King Lear during a plague and other people got offended by it, and the whole thing was a great microcosm of how batshit people who post stuff on the internet are? I’m writing this to tell you that during the pandemic, I also wrote King Lear.

It’s this piece. This is a piece I hope to publish on the internet called King Lear so later when I see old friends and colleagues out in the world again and they ask how my pandemic went, I can say, “It was hard. I almost killed myself. But I did write King Lear.” And they will be very impressed. Everybody has the suicide thing. But I was the one who wrote King Lear.

I hope you don’t think it matters, in real life. But I do appreciate the dopamine and if you’re reading this, you know where to find the like button on Twitter. I did write King Lear in the pandemic, and all you did was didn’t kill yourself. To be clear, I think that is something to celebrate, but I understand if out of jealousy or spite you read this and think it is pretty funny, or at least okay enough to press like on the internet, but you don’t hit the button because fuck this guy right? He published online and thinks he’s Shakespeare.

Basically, I am. Which King Lear would you rather read? Which one did you?

Michael Wheaton is the publisher & editor of Autofocus and the producer & host of its podcast, The Lives of Writers. You can find links to his previous publications at and more of his digitilized self on Twitter & Instagram: @wheaton3000.

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