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'A fictional world was in my imagination'

21 March 2016

‘I tend to do what I want to do. For a long time I did not write fiction. Then suddenly a fictional world was in my imagination, so I wrote it. It's ridiculous to say I'm passive in relation to these things, because obviously I do exactly what I want to do... I'm a sort of hedonist in the sense that I want to enjoy my life, and sometimes that means writing fiction and sometimes it means nonfiction.

There's a way in which, nonfiction or fiction, you learn your own mind, you find out what matters to you, what the questions are for you... And with fiction, you can put the problem out in front of yourself in a three-dimensional way, and work through it, and that's very, very interesting.'

Marilynne Robinson, author of The Givenness of Things and Housekeeping, in the Observer.