The flat where Pamuk writes in Istanbul overlooks the Golden Horn and has views of the Topkapi Palace on one side and the suspension bridge that links Europe and Asia on the other. To the periodic accompaniment of a muezzin’s call to prayer from the next-door mosque, he attempts to make sense of his unprecedented commercial success.
“When I was first published, the Marxists and the conservatives and the political Islamists were all fighting against each other and fighting among themselves,” he recalls. “So, because I was a newcomer they all kind of welcomed me, although a bit suspiciously. But it meant that I got all the prizes. And then a media boom began in Turkey and suddenly the interest in books was huge.”
The Guardian has a lengthy profile of Orhan Pamuk.