Kilgore Trout is a widely published, but otherwise unsung and virtually invisible writer who, by a fluke, is invited to deliver a keynote address at a local arts festival in distant Midland City. Dwayne Hoover is a wealthy businessman who owns much of Midland City, but has become increasingly unstable mentally. Kilgore finally arrives in Midland City and, by happenstance, piques the interest of Dwayne. A confused Dwayne demands a message from Kilgore, who hands over a copy of his novel. Dwayne reads the novel, which purports to be a message from the Creator of the Universe explaining that the reader - in this case Dwayne - is the only individual in the universe with free will. Everyone else is a robot. Dwayne believes the novel to be factual and immediately goes on a violent rampage, severely beating his son, his lover, and nine other people before being taken into custody. While Kilgore is walking the streets of Midland after Dwayne's rampage the narrator of the book approaches Kilgore. The narrator tells Kilgore of his existence, and lets Kilgore be free and under his own will.
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