A certain amount of unhappiness is useful in life; it gives you knowledge of other people’s unhappiness and how not to cause it.

 Photo:  Inez & Vinoodh

And when it’s all done, the book complete, is it hard to function? “You don’t know how to have free time. You don’t how to do that,” she says. “I know Philip Roth quite well, and he would finish a book and start the next the next day. I always thought, ‘What a tragic life, Philip.’” She says this with dry, affectionate humour. “But now I see exactly what he’s talking about. It’s what you do if you have this condition.”

By Sophie Elmhirst. Read the full interview on The Gentlewoman.