Mario Vargas Llosa
"In the last few years, something curious has happened. I’ve noticed that I’m reading less and less by my contemporaries and more and more by writers of the past. I read much more from the nineteenth century than from the twentieth. These days, I lean perhaps less toward literary works than toward essays and history. I haven’t given much thought to why I read what I read . . . Sometimes it’s professional reasons. My literary projects are related to the nineteenth century: an essay about Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables, or a novel inspired by the life of Flora Tristan, a Franco-Peruvian social reformer and “feminist” avant la lettre. But then I also think it’s because at fifteen or eighteen, you feel as if you have all the time in the world ahead of you. When you turn fifty, you become aware that your days are numbered and that you have to be selective. That’s probably why I don’t read my contemporaries as much."
Link para a entrevista completa ao The Paris Review (1990): http://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/2280/the-art-of-fiction-no-120-mario-vargas-llosa