Fiction Is An Inefficient Vehicle for Moralizing

Fiction is an inefficient and insincere vehicle for moralizing. If an author’s motive is to impart a lesson, he would be better off writing a manifesto or publishing a pamphlet and distributing it free on the subway. Novels are, by their very nature, slow. It takes a long time to read a book — longer than looking at a painting or listening to a song. And of course writing one takes even longer. If you are a person whose aim in life is to spread the gospel of good, writing about the inner lives of people who do not exist is a bad use of time.