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All Quotes by author - Kathryn Harrison
" A lot of writers dwell on their relationships with their mothers, but only a few are worth reading. "
" Because the kind of nonfiction I write has a plot, the events and transactions that make up a life, nonfiction offers me a break from plotting. "
" By the time Joan of Arc was 16 and had proclaimed herself the virgin warrior sent by God to deliver France from her enemies, the English, she had been receiving the counsel of angels for three years. "
" For years, the place I really lived - the world I watched, the one I thought and wrote about - was 15th-century France. "
" Having grown up so familiar with creating a pleasing facade, I now end up compelled to reveal things inside and say, 'Okay, now you really see me. Do you still love me?' And then it's never enough; it always has to be total self-revelation. "
" How many artists subscribe to the notion that creative success depends on input from the fickle muse or her modern avatar, mental illness? Probably very few. "
" How much of a book review is about the reviewer? Sometimes it's mostly about the reviewer! "
" I admire cool renderings of hot topics. "
" I admire writers who succeed at what I consider the first demand of art: that the artist vivisect himself without pity, without hesitation, determined to reveal whatever he might find. "
" I am perfectly capable of writing things about myself that one doesn't discuss in polite company, but I was raised by people who said you don't discuss politics, you don't discuss religion, and you certainly don't discuss people's sex lives. "
" I can't work out much about myself or what I see in the world around me unless I do it through writing. "
" I don't care what people think about me. I care what people think about my work. As a young woman, I was so eager to please that I served others' happiness and even their values before my own. "
" I got history solidly under my belt, reading Russian history and biographies. I couldn't change the facts. I could only play with how the people might have responded to the facts of their lives. "
" I have at last admitted that not only was I angry with my mother, but, in fact, I wanted to destroy her as a child. And I was so concerned to be a woman who was different from my mother that I had this vast architecture of rules. "
" I like vampires, tuberculosis, anything to do with blood. Then I read a biography of Rasputin and found out he'd had this daughter who had become a famous lion tamer and been billed as the daughter of the mad monk who was able to hypnotize animals with her eyes. It gave me a vision. "
" I'll never have so compelling a figure within my embrace as Joan of Arc; there will never be a book whose last chapter is so very hard to get right. "
" I love any book that makes my family seem almost normal. "
" I'm always sorry to finish a book, to let go of characters I love, people I've struggled to understand for years, people who evolve before me. "
" I'm not an investigative journalist; I don't track crime or police blotters. "
" In terms of going back and forth between fiction and nonfiction - in which I'll include memoir, biography, and true crime - is that one relieves the other. "
" I remember seeing my father only twice as a child for brief visits. As I grew up, I invented a father who was larger than life - stronger, smarter, more handsome, and even holier than other men. "
" I reread 'Nicholas and Alexandra' in my early twenties, and I never forgot the story. "
" I think in terms of the parents that I had, I sort of drew a bad hand, or bad karma; who knows? And I did have a family that was complicated, with some quite eccentric members. So there was a lot of grist there. "
" It is my conviction that secrets are more costly in the long run than honesty. "
" It's hard for me not to have a great deal of compassion for the last Romanov family because, really, I don't know if a politically savvy ruler would have been able to make the situation turn out much differently. "
" I used to enjoy reading true crime, but I've discovered that I don't have the journalism nose for blood. "
" I've always been interested in the intersection between our rational and our unconscious lives. "
" I was raised by maternal grandparents who were born in 1890 and 1899, respectively. They were British subjects; George V was the cousin of the tsar. The Romanovs were very real in their household. "
" I was the good girl who never needed disciplining, who made straight A's. I applied and was accepted to Stanford University. "
" I work in a small study on the top floor of a brownstone in Brooklyn - it's about 75 square feet, 11 taken up by book shelves along one wall. "
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