To my ear, the term 'comic novelist' is as redundant and off-putting as the term 'literary novelist'.
The young come in many guises: vigorous and passionate, vindictive and mean-spirited. And not every person over 65 is dozing in a retirement home.
The novel is a thing of irony and ambiguity. That's at the heart of 'J', a world that has stopped arguing with itself. We have to keep our equilibrium of hate, which is argument. But on the Internet, you find a unanimity of response, and in 'J,' there's a fear of that, that discourse becomes a statement of political or ideological belief.
No traveller ever sets out with so little idea of where he is going or how he is going to get there than an artist does. And no traveller ever gets to a more wonderful place.
I was brought up a Jew but, you know, that way of being Jewish - the New York way. We were stomach Jews; we were Jewish-joke Jews. We were bagel Jews. We didn't go to synagogue. I'm frightened of synagogue to this day.
I've never owned a T-shirt. I don't like vests or sweaters or cardies with zips. I like a proper shirt with a collar. There's nothing else that I think I look nice in. I don't think there's anything else that other men look nice in, to be honest. Things with words on! Can you imagine? On grown-ups! Words are to make books with.