Words and Worlds
In spite of my passion for literature and the written word, the universe I inhabit is more vitalist than intellectual. I’m not one for mysticism. I like cooking, I like drinking wine and I like lying out in the sun and making love. I enjoy working with my hands, and feeling the earth from my garden between my fingers. Landscapes and Nature in all its forms move me (except for rats). I take enormous pleasure in personal encounters, brief or not; in adventures of every sort, in travel, and in surprises.
These worlds are far from sober in character, let alone minimalist. I fear my calling leads me irrepressibly in the direction of excess and exuberance. This is reflected in my writing, which tends towards the visual – a quality I took with me after years of writing for the screen; it’s organic as well, bound up in the earth, full of light, smells and colours. For this is how I see life – all in all much more sensual than intellectual. My writing is a space in which all the senses can coalesce, none more so than humour.
I’m by no means a spontaneous author; I have an almost pathological obsession for detail. Each text is gradually constructed, layer by layer, a slow and meticulous process, characterised by writing, rewriting and rewriting again. Sometimes I find myself frustrated by just how fastidious and fussy I can be, but it always comes down to the fact that I love language, in all its richness and complexity. And I unabashedly demand a return to a fertile form of writing, both in choice of word and imagery.
Music – another love of mine – is always present in my narrative, through cadence, melody and, above all, rhythm. And the languages I speak – all great loves of my life as well – come alive in me as I write. This has now become a near-reflex mechanism, but one I’ve worked hard for. I find it fascinating to exercise my own language through the prism of other tongues, something which allows me to bend and distort it, and to use it in different, more personal ways.