To mark the occasion of being fully funded for publication, author Fiona Stocker met with Martin Amis, literary genius and tennis player of some note, who joined her from a rooftop in Paris in 1980. Here’s what he had to say.
FS: “Thanks for joining us, Martin. What are your thoughts on the status of literature in the early twenty first century?”
MA: “It’s becoming clearer and clearer to me, Fiona, that the world is there to be celebrated by writers, and in fact this is what all the good ones do, and that the great fashion for gloom and grimness was in fact a false path that certain writers took. Not so much you, I feel, with this your first volume of memoir.”
FS: “Well thanks, Marty. Is your own writing becoming any more cheerful as a result of your theory? After all, The Rachel Papers has the quality of a downward spiral, would you say? Are things looking any lighter in the Notting Hill of the naughties?”
MA: “Novelists tend to go off at 70, I’m in a funk about it, I’ve got myself into a real paranoid funk about it, how the talent dies before the body.”
FS: “It’s a problem isn’t it. I’m hoping to option the film rights for Apple Island Wife to stave off penury. What’s your advice on this?”
MA: “Watching an adaptation of your novel can be a violent experience: seeing your old jokes suddenly thrust at you can be alarming.”
FS: “I know, I know, I’ve been working the same material for seven years now, they’re like old friends who’ve outstayed their welcome, bit like Keith, hey!”
MA: (laughs) “Hah! Good one. But I started to enjoy ‘Money’ very quickly, and then I relaxed.”
FS: “I’ll look forward to that then. Thanks for joining us Martin. It looks pretty windy there on the Notre Dame Cathedral.”
MA: (brushes fag ash off jacket) “Just a little. Have a great Christmas, Fiona.”
FS: “You too Martin. What are your plans?”
MA: “We stay here in Primrose Hill and Isabel does roast beef with Yorkshire pudding and all the trimmings, it’s epic stuff.”
FS: “Well have a good one mate.”
Fiona Stocker was speaking to Martin Amis from the rooftop of the Cameron Street car park in Launceston yesterday.