By LAURA FREEMAN
Jasper Milvain, hero without scruple of George Gissing’s New Grub Street, is a hack’s hack. "It is my business", he smugs to his sister, "to know something about every subject – or to know where to get the knowledge." This passing acquaintance with any and all subjects is then profitably flogged round Fleet Street.
He writes a book review – three quarters of a column for the Evening Budget – after breakfast and a Saturday "causerie" for the Will-o’the-Wisp before lunch. Then a sketch – to be finished tomorrow – for The West End. Between tea and dinner, he reads four newspapers and two magazines, and he finishes an essay for The Current before bed. By such industry does a man make a living by his pen.