I’ve been writing fiction since I was a kid. From the age of 15 to 25, I probably wrote more than 50 short stories, one of which was published in “the Paris Review” in 1989.
Then in my late 30s and early 40s, I wrote a novel set in the farmlands of Stalinist Russia, which I stuck in a drawer. So when I finished the manuscript for “Rules of Civility,” it was the first thing I had submitted for publication in almost 20 years.
One reason for the long hiatus is that I have been an investment professional since my mid-20s. My personal challenge as an artist has been having a day job which is intellectually satisfying and fun — and thus can easily supplant the desire to make art.
But the benefit of having that career has been that I could write without an overwhelming sense of urgency to be published. I could just keep refining my craft until I was convinced I had something worth sharing.
This quote really makes me feel good about my life choices, not gonna lie. Also I want to read his book now.
Also Amor Towles may possibly be the best name ever.