He had the same attitude to his life as a scuptor to his statue or a novelist to his novel. One of the novelist’s inalienable rights is to be able to rework his novel. If he takes a dislike to the beginning, he can rewrite it or cross it out entirely. But Zdena’s existence deprived Mirek of his prerogative as an author. Zdena insisted on remaining part of the opening pages of the novel. She refused to be crossed out.
— Milan Kundera, The Book of Laughter and Forgetting