Private: Crace

Six, Jim Crace’s current novel, was released stateside last month. (Robert Birnbaum points out in email that the novel was published in the U.S. under the name Genesis. I keep forgetting that the title was changed because I read the U.K. version a couple of months ago.)

In a New York Times interview today, Crace says he eschews autobiography in his writing:

If anything autobiographical offers itself as a possible ingredient in a book, I will score it out … I’m a very secretive person… And this openness that you think you’re getting is actually just a smoke screen.

He believes his work is out of place in Britain:

“I write these deeply moral books in a country which would prefer irony to anything with a moral tone.”

He said that as a perpetual outsider who creates imaginary worlds he is “widely regarded as somebody who can’t be English,” so much so that early in his career people pronounced his name, which rhymes with trace, “Cra-CHAY” — “because they thought I had to be foreign.”