I began my writing life as a poet, so poetry has always been fundamental. I evolved from poetry to journalism to stories to novels. But poetry was always there.
The most authentic thing about us is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love and to be greater than our suffering.
I was born left-handed, but I was made to use my other hand. When I was writing ‘Famished Road,’ which was very long, I got repetitive stress syndrome. My right wrist collapsed, so I started using my left hand. The prose I wrote with my left hand came out denser, so later on I had to change it.
If you are working in an office, where do you find the time to write a novel? But you can finish a short story in five pages. Furthermore, a short story is a perfect place to learn the craft.
The best writing is not about the writer, the best writing is absolutely not about the writer, it’s about us, it’s about the reader.
I learned that life will go through changes – up and down and up again. It’s what life does.
I’m conscious of a series of circles working its way through my life. And at this particular moment I have come round to the beginning of my writing cycle. It begins with poetry. There’s hardly a day that goes past on which I don’t write poetry.
At the heart of ‘The Famished Road’ is a philosophical conundrum – for me, an essential one: what is reality? Everybody’s reality is subjective; it’s conditioned by upbringing, ideas, temperament, religion, what’s happened to you.
The higher the artist, the fewer the gestures. The fewer the tools, the greater the imagination. The greater the will, the greater the secret failure.
Reading is an act of civilization; it’s one of the greatest acts of civilization because it takes the free raw material of the mind and builds castles of possibilities.