One of the aims of the novelist, writes John Gardner in his The Art of Fiction, is to create for the reader “a vivid and continuous dream”. Well, these days, I find that dream to be full of interruptions.
I’m not referring to doorbells, phone calls and mysterious thumps from next door. Rather, it’s the distraction caused by having access to the Internet. The lurking sense that there are e-mails to be checked, tweets to be followed, status updates to be noted, headlines to be scanned or new videos of Rebecca Black to be made fun of.