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The Information by Martin Amis

The Information is a 1995 novel by British writer Martin Amis. The plot involves two forty year old novelists, Gwyn Barry (successful) and Richard Tull (not so). Amis has asserted that both characters are based (if they can be regarded as based on anybody) on himself.

Gwyn Barry and Richard Tull have been friends since they roomed together at university. Richard Tull was a promising writer with a seemingly bright future. However his career flags and he finds himself depressed writing book reviews for a small literary paper and running a vanity press. To his chagrin, Gwyn Barry - whose literary skills Tull holds in low esteem - has written a phenomenally successful novel and won a lucrative and respected literary prize. Barry begins to enjoy a rarified life whilst Tull toils away with his unsuccessful pursuits.