A question I too have had.
The longing one day to turn out a book — probably a novel or, less likely, an autobiography lies close to the center of contemporary aspirations. This is, at one level, a hugely welcome development, a consequene of widespread literacy, higher educational standards and a proper focus on the power of books to change lives.
But looked at from another angle, it may also, in private, be the result of something rather more desultory: an epidemic of isolation and loneliness.
The army of literary agents, scouts, editors and writing coaches testifies not only to our love of literature, but also, less intentionally, to an unaddressed groundswell of painful solitude.