I finally took the time to do the important work of Googling this phrase I remembered hearing on NPR a few years ago:
Mr. YGLESIAS: Right. I mean, it is true that if you come from a family of writers, you understand that there is always an assassin in the family.
(Soundbite of laughter)
Mr. YGLESIAS: I don’t really know any other way of doing the writing. So I didn’t feel I had any choice. And there were times when I considered just not publishing the book or not showing it to anyone. But I also knew that I felt that so acutely, that it was so dangerous, was also a sign that I was writing it correctly.
GROSS: Had your parents, in their novels, written characters that you knew were based on you that you found troubling?
Mr. YGLESIAS: Actually, even when someone writes you in a novel flatteringly, the truth is it’s always troubling because it’s odd to be a minor character in someone else’s life since we’re always the major character in our own lives.
GROSS: Oh that’s so interesting, the way you put it.
Mr. YGLESIAS: It’s always disturbing.
GROSS: So was that upsetting to see that in your parents’ work you were a minor character?
Mr. YGLESIAS: It was very strange, always disturbing. And I believe, although people will say otherwise, that it’s always disturbing to people to appear in someone’s book. It’s just – it offends the natural narcissism of every individual.