I really do think that all writing is personal, if not autobiographical in a sense. Volume 3 is where it really started to get personal for me, or at least this is where the more personal sections I’d first written years ago ended up once I began plotting them all out. This becomes pretty apparent if you know me but not so much if you don’t.
What I will say is that one of the central questions of the book is the distinction between our perception of a person or place and the reality of the same. Where Matthieu holds onto his idealistic visions of the world and subsequently has these ideals confronted, I tried to put in some of my own struggles with this same problem to inform his reactions.
Without giving anything away prematurely, the events of Volume 3 are fundamental in shaping not only Matthieu’s character, but the goals that he’ll strive for throughout the rest of his life.