Where are you now and what can you see?
I'm in my home in Lambeth, which is in a high-rise overlooking the Thames, so I can see the Palace of Westminster and the London wheel.
What are you currently reading?
William Boyd's 'Waiting for Sunrise'. I'm a great admirer of his writing - he goes from first person to third person to what could be a film script. As a writer, I wouldn't have the courage to do it, and it shows such confidence in his ability.
Choose a favourite author, and say why you admire her/him
RK Narayan. I love his collection of short stories, 'Malguldi Days'. In my view, it's a masterpiece. He will write about a tax collector in a small village and you have to turn to the next page. He has a gift for taking the ordinary and making it very special indeed. A gifted storyteller.
Describe the room where you usually write
I have a home in Majorca that has been built into a cliff. The study is separate from the house, and I love its calmness. It has 20 foot-long windows and overlooks the sea. There is just a desk with pens, pencils, a rubber, an hourglass, paper, pictures of my family, and me.
What distracts you from writing?
Nothing distracts me in the room, but I take breaks after every two hour session, and when I come out and the cricket's on, it's a lovely break.
Which fictional character most resembles you?
Tigger and Sydney Carton [from 'A Tale of Two Cities']. It was Ann Leslie who first called me Tigger and I'm proud to be him.
What are your readers like when you meet them?
They're wonderful, a real combination. In India, 3,000 to 4,000 people will turn up. It's truly overwhelming.
Who is your hero/heroine from outside literature?
George Mallory, who in 1924 did, or did not, conquer Mount Everest in hobnail boots and a three-piece suit.
Jeffrey Archer's 'The Sins of the Father' is published by Macmillan
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies