New novel details the horrors of apartment-hunting in Brooklyn - Brooklyn Paper

New novel details the horrors of apartment-hunting in Brooklyn

Home sweet home: Novelist Lindsey Palmer in her own Park Slope apartment.
Photo by Cate Dingley

This is different kind of horror story.

A Park Slope author has penned a new novel about the terrifying experience of apartment-hunting in Brooklyn. The book was inspired in part from her own experiences in the wilderness of New York’s rental market, the writer said.

“This is your home you’re talking about,” said Lindsey Palmer, who will launch her novel “If We Lived Here” at Greenlight Bookstore in Fort Greene on March 25. “That is the essence of your feeling of safety and security. That’s hard to do already, but it is so much harder here.”

“If We Lived Here” follows the travails of Nick and Emma, a 30-something couple planning to move in together and the absurd hoops they must jump through in order to put a roof over their heads.

Palmer, who moved to New York a decade ago, said she has gone through six apartment hunts since then, and worked some of her own nightmares and leftover neuroses into the plot. She said her trials will be familiar to anyone who has suffered through the universal but still lonely process of finding a home in New York.

“Everyone has experienced this, but you’re on your own,” Palmer said. “I have such memories of being in the thick of it and having people tell me ‘It always works out,’ but that’s cold comfort when you’re thinking you’ll never find a place.”

The novel also explores how women’s friendships evolve as they leave their 20s and begin to grow up — or don’t. Palmer, whose previous novel “Pretty in Ink” was based on her time working in the women’s magazine industry, began writing the book shortly before turning 30, a time she said she and her friends began to lead very different lives from one another.

“I’m not sure about men, but that time looms large in women’s lives,” she said. “I have friends who are settling down and having babies, and I have friends who are e-mailing me about their Tinder dates last night.”

Lindsey Palmer launches “If We Lived Here” at Greenlight Books [686 Fulton St. at S. Portland Avenue in Fort Greene, (718) 246–0200, www.greenlightbookstore.com.] March 25 at 7:30 pm. Free.

Reach reporter Noah Hurowitz at nhurowitz@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–4505. Follow him on Twitter @noahhurowitz

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