If there is an abiding theme in 'The Pursuit of Happiness,' it is the idea that you come into the world already shaped by other people's past histories.
We don't like admitting this, but it is a key component of human existence: the fact that life has the potential for things both wondrous and horrific.
Tragedy is one of the larger prices we pay for being alive. No one ever sidesteps tragedy. It is always there, shadowing us.
With a novel, no matter where I am in it, I'm fretting about it. Every time I write a book, it starts with great forward momentum. Then there seems to be a period where it slows down a bit, and other things intervene. Then I gain momentum.
From Graham Greene, I learnt how to be an accessible writer who grapples with our doubts as sentient individuals.
Success is a very fragile veneer. I get wary of people who embrace celebrity. It ruins people.
The decision to write full time was made when I was twenty-eight years old and had just had two small plays accepted for BBC Radio.
I've been known to write on the Underground in London and on the subway in New York. I have two or three cafes in Paris that I go into. I find a corner with a little shade, and I can work.
I want to be a popular novelist who's also serious, or a serious novelist who's also very accessible.
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