Pamela Paul, editor of The New York Times Book Review, discusses 'By the Book: Writers on Literature and the Literary Life from The New York Times Book Review.'
Where are you from?
Who are your favorite writers?
George Eliot, Thomas Mann, Tolstoy, Edith Wharton, William Dean Howells, Joan Didion, Marjane Satrapi, Henry James, George Orwell, David Lodge
What are your favorite books?
Middlemarch, War and Peace, The House of Mirth, Portrait of a Lady, big fat presidential biographies
Which book/books have had the biggest influence on your writing?
James B. Stewart’s Follow the Story, and lots of George Orwell
Which teacher had the biggest impact on your life?
James Morone at Brown University
What’s the best baby advice you have received?
My friend Holly told me, “Relax. Our parents didn’t do half the things we do with our kids and we turned out fine.”
My friend Amy told me to savor all the cute things your kids are doing right now because those cute things will go away. New cute habits and idiosyncrasies will pop up, but you’ll still miss the old ones.
What’s your favorite piece of advice to new parents?
On a practical level: Borrow, recycle, and reuse.
On an emotional level: Focus on where your children are, not on where they’re going.
And for second-time parents: Forget everything you thought you knew about babies. What you know is all about your first baby. Now you have to learn from scratch about your second one.
What inspired you to write your first book?
Sadly, the end of my first marriage.
Where do you write?