Hello! You have received critical acclaim and commercial success in equal measures. But how important is a book's so-called "commercial" appeal to you? This may not be very important to you now, but was it something you considered when you started writing?
Hello: It was very far from my thoughts when I began. That was in Canada in the late 50s and early 60s, and none of the writers I knew had the expectation of commercial success. We made jokes about it, but we didn't think we could really do it. I have been more than a little surprised by the unexpected success of some of my wilder ventures. I have never been able to anticipate anyway what "the reader" will like. "The reader" is not homogenous, like cream cheese. "The reader" is always one, singular - an individual. So I try to take care of my books, and have to trust that the readers will make their own choices. I can't set out to flatter and seduce them!