Writing is a way of thinking. My novels are often born out of a question - of such a complex or intricate nature that a whole book is needed to form the answer. Somewhere along the line of writing the novel, I usually forget the initial question, but when the manuscript is finished - then it hits me: there's the answer, such as it is.
I believe that if it were possible to shorten this answer, I would have written a that much shorter novel - down to one single sentence, ideally. Mostly, that is not possible. Not to me, anyway.
Writing is a way of dreaming. It is strange how the construction of the novel becomes so concrete one can even smell its scents, stumble on its paving stones, get soaked by its rain, yes, be overcome by its intensified form of reality. The novel truly becomes in some sense more real than so called reality, sharper and more plausible.
In that way writing is like living - many lives.
I am greedy. One single life, no matter how long or rich, is not enough for me. When I see people pass by my table at a street cafe, when I gaze at all the lit windows of an apartment building in the evening, when I watch strangers join and greet each other at a railway station - then this greed burns inside of me. I want to live all those lives.