The novel, set in a dystopia of the future, is a love story between loner artists, Ailinn and Kevern, and is a dark turn for a writer who has made his name by making others laugh. But behind every joke has not the impetus for its telling been borne of something more desperate and tragic?
When I first tried to contact John, it was Beverly who answered my emails. She set up an initial phone conversation with John, and then took the lead. Later the same year, I met Beverly and John in person at the LRB bookshop for a reading.
I have read a few articles and spoken to a couple of people in the book trade over the past week in relation to the ongoing dispute between Hachette (and Authors United) and Amazon. Most people who you will speak to, particularly inside the industry, will be squarely behind the authors.
Acting is a hard business. Don't get me wrong, doing the actual job isn't hard, it is a brilliant career, but the industry is a tough one and many actors remain out of work and in poverty. That is why I wrote my book, How To Be a Successful Actor: Becoming an Actorpreneur.
This appointment will only really be revealed as a success or failure over the next couple of months. That includes finding out the sort of changes Hoare will make, and the influence over decisions he is allowed. It could be a great leap that proves taking a business-sided angle was just what was needed - or it could further a politicisation that Gove set in motion before he left.