Kafka, of course, never had to worry about agents or anything like that, because he took the easy way and dropped dead having hardly published anything, leaving Max Brod to do all the heavy lifting—quite literally, by smuggling his dead friend’s work past the Nazis to America. I understand some of it was lost en route, and while it was almost certainly destroyed, one never knows; maybe it’ll pop up somewhere, like that cache of hidden degenerate artworks that was found only a few years ago.

I was somewhat inspired by Kafkamesto, a point-and-click adventure game based on Kafka’s life and work. It’s kind of brilliant. What could possibly be a better vehicle for a series of dreamlike episodes that seem as if they could happen in any order and bear only a superficial resemblance to real life while following their own absurd logic? Also you die a lot. And don’t sit down in the chair in the doctor’s office or you turn into a cockroach, that’s a game over.