I'm not sure how to describe my style. A lot of my work is dark and looks a bit sad, which is strange because I'm such a smiley, over-the-top positive guy who wears gold shoes most days.
Le Carre's voice - patrician, cold, brilliant and amused - was perfect for the wilderness-of-mirrors undertow of the Cold War, and George Smiley is the all-time harassed bureaucrat of spy fiction.
The creation of George Smiley, the retired spy recalled to hunt for just such a high-ranking mole in 'Tinker, Tailor,' was extremely personal. I borrowed elements of people I admired and invested them in this mythical character. I'm such a fluent, specious person now, but I was an extremely awkward fellow in those days.
I'm quite an optimist, quite happy in life, quite smiley.
Richard C. Armitage