Penguin: What issues does a 36-year-old man have to deal with that a 26-year-old doesn’t?
Nick Hornby: Just about everything. You can claim at 26 that you’re too young for everything – a proper job, a proper relationship, kids – but it has started to wear thin ten years later.
P: How do you feel about Hugh Grant playing Will in the forthcoming film of About a Boy?
N: Good. He’s wanted to do the part for a long time, which I think is a good sign, and his post-Bridget Jones incarnation, as a baddy will serve him well.
P: Take us through an average day in the life of Nick Hornby…
N: Wander to my office, a small flat just round the corner from home. Smoking, messing round on the Internet, emailing, and, eventually, writing -usually just when it’s time to pick up my son from school.
P: At what point did you begin to believe that you could make a career out of writing?
N: Not really until I got a smallish advance for Fever Pitch, and even then I thought that most of my living would come through journalism rather than books.
P: What’s on your bedside table?
N: Back copies of the New Yorker. Andrew Rawnsley’s book about New Labour. The new Michael Chabon novel. Indigestion tablets.
P: What was the last film you saw?
N: At the time of writing You Can Count On Me, which I loved to bits.
P: You have 10 minutes to get out of a burning building – is it books or records or something else you rescue?
N: There are a couple of paintings I own I’d probably grab first. There’s no replacing them.
P: You are now the pop critic for the New Yorker – could you see yourself ever living there?
N: My domestic circumstances wouldn’t allow it at the moment, but I’d love to live in the US for a while at some stage – San Francisco is the place I’d choose