I speak with some authority because I had the privilege of knowing him during several phases of his life. WhenI met him in 1918 [sic] he was  writing Ulysses. He as famous asmong only a few, ut he neither doubted nor marveled at his genius. He alread had given himself over to that kind of daily hell, the creation of the Joycean world.
What strikes one about this phenomenon, one of the purest, in the scientific sense, that the hsitory of literature offers, is its unity. [...] The writer refuses to lie. He rejets everything that we peoratively call literary. All poses, all tricks, all ambivalences are rejected - the most compelte good faith ever kept.
As soon as Joyce felt compelled to write, he gave himself over it it entirely. All his actions, all of his readings, his studies, his joys, his pains were dedicated to his work. He was the exact opposite of a dilettante,
That life dictates the readers attitude. I demands that in order to approach the work an effort must be made. It restores to reading a different sense and a dignity that most contemporary novels had caused it to lose.
[...] since he is no longer indpendent of the writer but an associate the reader should read Dubliners before the Portrait, then go on to Ulysses, and end with Finnegans Wake. Let us repeat, Joyce has created a wordl, and this world is acceessible to us only if we can humbly obey the writers wishes.
Of equal necessity with tht obedience is a knowledge of Joyces life. It is, moreover, a life of great simplicity. But it is little know. The many biographies already published are generally inaccurate. They always lack an element that, for want of an more exact word, must be called poetry. James was a poet, a great poet, who knew  what poetry meant and who lived by it and for it. The whole first part of of his life is told by himself, with an intensity that borders on despair, in his youthful book A Portrait and later in the first part of Ulysses. He has depicted himself under the name of Stephen Dedalus. Everything that went into his formation, the whole background, the whole nature of his future life, is fixed with a precision and carefulness that makes all later accounts vain. When Joyce stopped writing his biography it was because he thought that he no longer pertained to his work. One knows that after he left Ireland he came to Paris to study medicine, that he passed through Zurich and went to settle in Trieste, where he taught English in the Berlitz Schools The Trieste period, which predates 1914, is without doubt the most important of all his life. He completed Portrait, but it was also at this time that he became aware of the grandeur and importance of his lifes work; it was at this period that he detached himself definitively from our world in order to conceive the Joycean universe.
I have found Joyces tracks in the unrecognized city par excellence, this city that the vicinity of Venice obscures so unjustly. (And wasnt it only to find evidences of Joyce that I myself went there?) On the edge of Austria and across from Italy, Trieste, where Stendahl meditated and Fouché died ignominiously, is the most beautiful, the most European crossroads in all Europe. Joyce lived there ten years in a poverty that bordered on destitution. I have visited the building where he began writing Ulysses; I have walked through the streets that he frequented; I have retraced his daily route; above all, I have listened to the stories, the sounds, the cries, the language (one of the most varied, one of the richest, one of most composite in the world) that Joyce listened to with a passionate attention.
Can one say that Joyce worked? He lived his books. I have observed him many times during his leisure, or so-called leisure. Together we often went to the theatre, which, like all good Irishmen,
It was doubtless this same pleasure that he sought in bringing together his friends to celebrate special occasions. [...] (p.113.)
[...] each day, and each hour of the day, he thought of Ireland; he lived and relived his memories; thousands of times he mentally traversed the streets and squares of the city, the pathways of the surrounding area; he looked at every house, he conversed with the inhabitants; he described, painted (and with what minute detail) the hours and the colors. Since his departure in 1904, he never wanted to retrace his steps. At the urging of an Irish friend, I one day asked him the reason for his refusal. In reply, he only looked at me and with his elongated hand stirred, like a blind man, the pages he was writing at that time. Have I mistranslated his response in thinking that to complete his work it was necessary for him to avoid comparing the reality and the evocation, to avoid disturbing his image of Dublin by an inevitable disappointment?
It never can be sufficiently emphasized that Joyce lived in exile voluntarily, lived in exile in order to complete his work. It would have been sweet and exalting, especially for an Irishman, to be received in Dublin, to take his revenge thirty years later on those who mocked the  poor student into exile. His work was not finished. That was enough to silence his desire.
Many people, in my prsence, came to himbearing news of Ireland. Pat, or of Mother X, the one who had such a strange nose .. He laughed, he laughed, but one sensed in the childlike laugh a kind of pain, a regret, and doubtless a sense of remorse. [...]. (p.117.)