Why do we have so many novels and films featuring writers and artists? Films abound—Amadeus, Picasso, Turner, Oscar Wilde, Neruda, Leopardi. In fiction we have, among others, Michael Cunningham’s Virginia Woolf in The Hours, Colm Tóibín’s Henry James in The Master. And now the English novelist Jo Baker has dramatized the war years of Samuel Beckett. What is the attraction?