In the three decades that Nobel prize-winning author Orhan Pamuk has devoted himself to writing fiction, he has also produced scores of witty, moving, and provocative essays and articles. He engages the work of Nabokov, Kundera, Rushdie, and Vargas Llosa, among others, and he discusses his own books and writing process. We also learn how he lives, as he recounts his successful struggle to quit smoking, describes his relationship with his daughter, and reflects on the controversy he has attracted in recent years. Here is a thoughtful compilation of a brilliant novelist's best nonfiction, offering different perspectives on his lifelong obsessions with loneliness, contentment, and the books and cities that have shaped his experience.
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|Title of Mystery & Detective eBook: Other Colors|
|Release Date: 09-18-2007|
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|Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group|
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Chapter One: The Implied Author
I have been writing for thirty years. I have been reciting these words for some time now. I’ve been reciting them for so long, in fact, that they have ceased to be true, for now I am entering into my thirty-first year as a writer. I do still like saying that I’ve been writing novels for thirty years—though this is a bit of an exaggeration. From time to time, I do other sorts of writing: essays, criticism, reflections on Istanbul or politics, and speeches. But my true vocation, the thing that binds me to life, is writing novels. There are plenty of brilliant writers who’ve been writing much longer than I, who’ve been writing for half a century without paying the matter much attention. There are also the great writers to whom I return again and again, Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, and Thomas Mann, whose careers spanned more than fifty years. . . . So why do I make so much of my thirtieth anniversary as a writer? I do so because I wish to talk about writing, and most particularly novel writing, as a habit.
In order to be happy I must have my daily dose of literature. In this I am no different from the patient who must take a spoon of medicine each day. When I learned, as a child, that diabetics needed an injection every day, I felt bad for them as anyone might; I may even have thought of them as half dead. My dependence on literature must make me half dead in the same way. Especially when I was a young writer, I sensed that others saw me as cut off from the real world and so doomed to be “half dead.” Or perhaps the right term is “half a ghost.” I have sometimes even entertained the thought that I