“When I read stories obsessively as a child I was striking a kind of deal that allowed me to turn away. Sometime in childhood I made a bargain that limited, so I thought, the power over me that real experience had, the real experience which comes to us in act and accident and through the proximate, continuous existence of those we love. All right, I said, I’ll let a quantity of that stream over me, if I can have a balancing portion of this, the other kind of experience, which is controlled, and repeatable, and comes off the page.”
Francis Spufford, “The Habit,” from Granta 77: What We Think of America. 2002. UK: Granta Publications.