Early in October I flew to Minneapolis and ran my first marathon. It's astounding to me how many people do this on a regular basis because it really is a long way to run. What I want to talk about, though, is how I ran my first marathon with Haruki Murakami.
Murakami's books have for me served as a commentary on Gatsby. I read his work as if with a Gatsby divining rod, alert to allusions embedded in his narratives, which confirm my understanding of the classic.
One of the great struggles of any creative profession is coming up with an ingenious and original idea in a timely manner. Lightning strikes of inspiration are often few and far between, which makes it hard to convince people to give you money for your ideas.
An incredible number of literary heavyweights have been insulted with spots on the Bad Sex shortlist over the past 19 years. Which begs the question: Has sufficient attention been paid to the art of writing sex scenes?
I once slept with a man because he gave me a copy of Murakami's The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. Before you judge me, read the book. It's lyrical and seductive and changes the way you think about reality, about life.