Diane Johnson is the author of thirteen books, nine of them novels, including Persian Nights, Lying Low, Le Mariage and Le Divorce, which was a 1997 National Book Award finalist. In addition to her fiction, she has written several collections of essays, a biography of Dashiell Hammett, and the screenplay of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining. 
Jun 01 2002
Interview with Diane Johnson
Interviewer: I’m stuck by the sense of fun in your work, something I seldom see in contemporary fiction.
Johnson: I too find that quality strangely lacking — not true of authors we now think of as “classic,” like, say, E. M. Forster, or even James, who can be very funny. I have no explanation for the American lack, and it has even crossed my mind that a sense of fun can be a curse in the U.S., preventing readers from seeing the serious issues and thoughts that may find their way into a writer’s pages.
Jun 01 1992
J. had gone to a meeting in Washington; I had begged off for once and was revelling in the quiet mornings at home, and the chance to work undisturbed on a novel I was writing. Then he telephoned to say he had forgotten to tell me that I would be getting a visit from someone named Yan Zhang, or Zhang Yan, who was coming to San Francisco, and could we put up this Yan Zhang for a couple days?