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All Quotes by author - Jonathan Dee
" Children go from being a kind of cultural protectorate to the Junior Auxiliary of the tube-watching nation at large, and programs are designed for them on the same principle as they're designed for grown-ups: as a way to sell eyeballs to advertisers. "
" Don't get me wrong: I can and do waste time on the Internet with the best of them, but in some respects, I am an embarrassingly analog guy. I am not on Facebook. I write whole books on yellow legal pads. I do not own a cell phone. "
" Here is what I am not going to do: I am not going to go to a restaurant, take pictures of my food, download them, and call that a blog. That is beyond the pale. The Internet is such a bazaar of self-indulgences that I don't know why that particular one should bug me so much. But it really does. "
" I am hopelessly devoted to paper. Nothing against e-readers of any sort - anything that keeps people reading is okay by me - but I am not, historically, an early adopter of such things. "
" If you look at the practice of 'crisis management,' and maybe squint at it a little, you can make out in the corners of your vision the ghosts or the vestiges of a much older, but still thoroughly American, form of public life, one centered not on public opinion but on religion. "
" I have no desire to write historical anything or futuristic anything - I want to find a way to get at the essence of what it's like to be alive now. The reason why great novels from centuries ago are still great is because that's what they were doing; it's like a message from another culture. "
" I'm not interested in current events per se, but I am interested in how certain aspects of social or public life that might seem ultra-contemporary actually take their place in a long American continuum. "
" In order to describe a particular subculture, you might want to portray people who are typical or representative of that subculture; but to dramatize it, to make it an interesting setting for a story, you want to bring someone anomalous into that setting, to see how she conforms to it, and it to her. "
" I personally feel I still have so much to learn as a writer; each novel is better than the one before, just because I'm getting better at it. "
" I seem to have a talent for writing endings that seem just right to me but that frustrate other people. "
" I think that good storytelling of any kind does promote a humility in that it encourages you to see the world the way that other people see it. "
" It's nice to have something else going on when a book comes out so you're not just sitting by the phone, waiting for things to happen. You don't want to be the guy Googling himself all day. "
" It's not really an original idea, but there's something that goes along with power and celebrity that starts to make you feel like you're impervious to certain forces that the rest of us have to live with. "
" I wrote my first novel in the same conditions as most first novelists - I had a full-time job, I shared an apartment, I had no time - and so I became a compulsive outliner of everything. Ever since then, my process has consisted of trying to forcibly rid myself of that compulsion. "
" John Dos Passos, Raymond Carver, Flaubert and William Maxwell were all very influential when I first started writing. Now, the writers I'm most interested in are the writers who are most unlike me: for example, Denis Johnson. "
" Kenneth Branagh. There was a time in my life when people would tell me constantly that I look like him. I could do a lot worse than that. "
" More than periods where I don't write anything, I have periods where I just write junk and I know I'm writing junk but I can't stop. "
" New York is ultimately not the synthesis but merely the sum of its unfathomable subjectivities, its personal histories, its uncategorisable figures. "
" Novels are a kind of experiment in selfhood, for the reader as well as for the author. "
" That's always the most productive research - research into tone, into voice. Facts are nice, too, but facts are more raw material than creative inspiration. "
" The don't-ask-don't-tell approach to plot and character that 'The Hurt Locker' relies on to set itself in motion doesn't offend me politically. It offends me as a storyteller. "
" The first draft of everything, I write longhand. One of the nice things about that is that it makes you keep going. If you write a bad sentence on the computer, then it's very tempting to go back and fidget with it and spend another 20 minutes trying to make it into a good sentence. "
" The first draft often is really fast, and I'd be terribly ashamed if anybody ever saw it. "
" There's no path to being a writer that's applicable to everyone. Some young writers have the fortitude to work in a vacuum. For me, it was important to have some sense that my failures weren't unique. "
" Those who know New York City primarily through tourism or mass culture may think of us natives as possessing certain shared characteristics, not all of them flattering. But the true, volatile charisma of New York lies in how balkanised it is. "
" Tween programming is so retro that the shows even have theme songs, something the quest for more commercial time drove out of prime-time television years ago. "
" What could be more boring than a novel that tells you how to think about everything that happens in it? "
" When I'm composing a scene for the first time, I try to imitate my character. The less critical distance the better - particularly when they're acting badly. "
" When I read a book I liked, I would get a pen and one of my father's legal pads and rewrite it from memory as if I had thought of it myself. It was a clear sign that I wanted to be involved in writing, even if it was just pretend at that point. "
" Writers like to feel sorry for themselves, which is easy to do in private, but when called on to feel sorry for ourselves in social situations, we will often do so by sharing terrible book tour stories. "
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