When you try to grasp the way the Western world is going, you see that we are on a ratchet towards a surveillance state, which is coming to include the whole population in its surveillance. This is our reward for accepting the restraints on the way we live now.
I've never really worked out this thought, and I don't know if I'm really conscious of it, but I can see there's an attraction about writing about a period that's over and isn't going to change colour while you look at it.
I don't think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones in the right order, you can nudge the world a little or make a poem which children will speak for you when you're dead.
One senses that all the Bolsheviks, even those who ended up as cold-blooded autocrats, had been on a journey from idealism to something else, and didn't notice - to mix periods - when the Rubicon was crossed.
My father was a doctor in Moravia, in the south of the country. There were a number of Jewish doctors in the hospital there, and at a certain point - almost too late, really, but in time - they were all sent overseas by their employer.
I'm not one of those writers who insist they don't read reviews and don't care much about them. I do read them, and I do care about them, and they're not always what you want them to be in an ideal world.
I once did a radio program with a famous materialist, that is to say a scientist who believed that absolutely everything was physical and that all emotions were reductive to little electrical impulses in your neurons. And I found that I didn't believe that. But what the emotions really are, I don't have an alternative theory.
When I was in my teens, I was very, very keen on being the author of a book. What the book was was secondary. I wanted it to be in hardback. I didn't care how thick or thin it was, and I didn't actually care what it was about.
Theater in New York is nearer to the street. In London, you have to go deep into the building, usually, to reach the place where theater happens. On Broadway, only the fire doors separate you from the sidewalk, and you're lucky if the sound of a police car doesn't rip the envelope twice a night.
It is easily and often overlooked that when Thomas Jefferson asserted that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness were inalienable human rights, he did so on the ground that they had been endowed by God, our Creator.
Like many people, I only knew of Ford Madox Ford through a book called 'The Good Soldier,' which is everybody's favorite Ford Madox Ford if they have one, but I came to read 'Parade's End' when it was suggested via Damien Timmer of Mammoth Screen.