On being Shakespeare

Shakespeare’s friends all agreed upon the fact that the author of « Othello » was a good fellow, describing him as good-natured, easy-going, gentle and strikingly unassuming. In short, someone with whom you could have a relaxed drink in a pub. « It is as though, says Harold Bloom, the creator of scores of major characters and hundreds of frequently vivid figures wasted no imaginative energy in inventing a persona for himself ». Writers tend to associate creativity with neurosis (much to the detriment of their close relatives), but there is an inverse ratio in Shakespeare’s case : the genius of Western Literature was in fact, quite simply, a charming man.