While writing Fire in the Unnameable Country, Islam holed himself up in a “crappy” apartment in midtown Toronto, becoming monkish in his devotion to the project. “I was unwilling to let [a writing career] go without one last go at it,” he says. He cut himself off from friends, spent what little money he had on food and rent, and simply wrote.
Ghalib Islam sustained a traumatic brain injury, but all he cared about was finishing his book.
When people ask me why I write, I have to explain to them that it's like a compulsion. You really don't have a choice in the matter. It just has to come out, or you'll go insane.
This is true, I think, for all sorts of arts. It's like being animated by a demon. Your time does not belong to you. It belongs to this thing that exists inside of you, crawling out your fingers and onto a blank page.
people I admire
Bret Easton Ellis