"Still, when it comes to the state of the novel, to the future of the novel, I feel rather optimistic. Numbers don't count where books are concerned -for there is only one reader, each and every time only one reader. That explains the particular power of the novel, and why in my opinion, it will never die as a form. Every novel is an equal collaboration between the writer and the reader, and it is the only place in the world where two strangers can meet on terms of absolute intimacy. I have spent my life in conversations with people I have never seen, with people I will never know, and I hope to continue until the day I stop breathing."