To choose a writer for a friend is like palling around with your cardiologist, who might be musing as you talk to him that you are a sinking man. A writer's love for another writer is never quite free of malice. He may enjoy discussing your failures even more than you do. He probably sees you as tragic, like his characters - or unworthy of tragedy, which is worse.

To choose a writer for a friend is like palling around with your cardiologist, who might be musing as you talk to him that you are a sinking man. A writer's love for another writer is never quite free of malice. He may enjoy discussing your failures even more than you do. He probably sees you as tragic, like his characters - or unworthy of tragedy, which is worse.