I am by trade a novelist. It is, I think, a harmless trade, though it is not everywhere considered a respectable one. Novelists put dirty language into the mouths of their characters, and they show these characters fornicating or going on the toilet. Moreover it is not a useful trade, as that of the carpenter or the pastry cook. The novelist passes the time for you between one useful action and another; he helps fill the gaps that appear in the serious fabric of living. He is a mere entertainer, a sort of clown. He mimes, he makes grotesque gestures, he is pathetic or comic and sometimes both, he sends words spinning through the air like colored balls.