Karl Ove Knausgaard

To write is to escape. But it’s also to create. So it’s not like you’re running away when you’re writing; it’s kind of the opposite, a definitive confrontation with who you are and what limits you have, in the open and limitless world of fiction. Reading was good for me when I was a child because I could go to other places without leaving my room. For a long time I thought that childhood was a kind of prison, and that the adults or parents were like guards. Nowadays I think it’s the other way around. The intensity of your experiences is so strong when you’re a child, the world is so insanely alive to you, that the fact that you’re quite helplessly in your parents’ hands is of lesser importance. As an adult, you can do what you want, but mostly you do it without that intensity; you look at the world with a distance, you can’t enter it, it’s out of reach, except when you are in love, of course. Or when you are disappearing into some kind of entertainment, which is, we have to admit, childish.

– Karl Ove Knausgaard, in conversation with Scott Esposito from Tin House


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