Chris Cleave, 36, is the author of the novels Incendiary and The Other Hand and will be appearing at the Emirates Airline Festival Of Literature. 1. We are all adrift in worlds of our own invention and we are all very lonely. We tell each other stories to draw our inner worlds closer; to feel less alone. 2. Writing is not the best way to tell a story. Sport is a beautiful and intricate story that we can watch unfolding. It makes us feel less lonely to live through such a story together. A great sportsman or woman is telling a story with their life. A world-class tennis player or a champion cyclist is a great artist.
3. Of all the conventional arts, live comedy is perhaps the greatest, followed by music, dance and poetry. Prose writing is quite far down the ladder, but it can still be beautiful if the writer works hard and remembers that the reader is the greater artist. When you write, you are putting down notes on a stave but it is the reader who breathes music and laughter into it all. 4. If I had to choose between succeeding as a writer and succeeding as a parent, I would rather be a good parent.
5. If I could choose between talking with God and talking with children, I don't think I'd need to choose. As told to Helen McLaughlin Chris Cleave In Conversation takes place on Friday March 12 at 12.30pm, It will be followed by a book signing. See www.eaifl.com for ticket details.