Aparna Nancherla Tackles Self-Sabotage In Her New Book

by Brandy Barber

Aparna Nancherla is the farthest thing from an imposter. An adorably earnest comedian, Nancherla has acted in hit shows (BoJack Horseman), written for TV (Late Night with Seth Meyers) and highbrow publications (The New York Times), released a stand-up album, and starred in two comedy specials. But being successful doesn’t mean she doesn’t struggle with self-doubt, and this unflinching essay collection delves into the self-sabotaging tendencies she finds herself saddled with every day. Ironically, Nancherla feels more inwardly terrified the more her outside-facing success grows. “Every day was Take Your Doubter to Work Day!” she jokes, reflecting on the immense pressure of landing her first TV writing job.

Feeling like a fraud is something we all contend with. But by the end of her collection, Nancherla realizes that while there is no way to ignore her inner critic, she can continue to try to make peace with it. “Most everything I’ve written about remains open-ended,” she confides, “ongoing battles that must be faced and negotiated.” It’s not a neat, tied-up-with-a-little-bow, self-help-book ending. But it’s an honest one.

Top Image Photographed by Danielle St. Laurent

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