I’m still surprised by how often we find what we need at just the right moment. From the 1999 The Paris Review interview with Peter Matthiessen:
Of course, there are single novels [of a writer] that are excellent, but what interests me most is the working through from book to book of some recurrent obsession or at least preoccupation, a reverberation from within, which may burst the work wide at any moment, though it often seems half-hidden from the writer. What I’m trying to describe, I guess, is conflagration, a life burning up, as lives do in Dostoyevsky. Obsession that isn’t crazed or criminal is always enthralling.