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All Quotes by author - Richard Russo
" About 15 years ago I went though a period of a year or so when I just couldn't find anything good. My wife noticed I was having trouble reading menus. I bought some cheap reading glasses in a drug store. I got home and suddenly all these books that weren't good were good. "
" A couple years ago, the novelist Russell Banks told me he was reading the ancient Greek historian Herodotus. I asked why. He said, 'Because I've always wanted to and am tired of having my reading assigned.' I thought it was a marvelous declaration of independence. "
" A lot of my characters in all of my books have a self-destructive urge. They'll do precisely the thing that they know is wrong, take a perverse delight in doing the wrong thing. "
" America has always been a nation of small places, and as we lose them, we're losing part of ourselves. "
" A short story is something that I think can be intuited and envisioned and held in your mind almost at once. "
" At the risk of appearing disingenuous, I don't really think of myself as 'writing humor.' I'm simply reporting on the world I observe, which is frequently hilarious. "
" By ignoring a lot of American culture you can write more interesting stories. Unfortunately, if you were writing about America as it is, you'd be writing about a lot of people sitting in front of television sets. "
" Cary Grant never won an Oscar, primarily, I suspect, because he made everything look so effortless. Why reward someone for having fun, for being charming? "
" Even at its most perceptive, sociology deals in abstractions. "
" HBO is really famous for hiring good people and staying out of their way until they ask for help, or need it. And that reputation is earned. "
" I can be glib and truthful all at once. "
" I don't think America has ever had a center the way London is the center of England or Dublin is the center of Ireland. "
" I don't think there's a shortage of material in the world. Or in my head. I just pray for continued good health, because I've got other stories to tell. "
" If my career continues along its current arc, people will probably look at me and see a writer who is obsessed with the relationship between rich and poor and with how the rich somehow or other always manage to betray the poor, even when they don't mean to. "
" If there's an enduring theme in my work, it's probably the effects of class on American life. "
" If you work at comedy too laboriously, you can kill what's funny in the joke. "
" I get and read an enormous number of first novels. "
" I have to have a character worth caring about. I tend not to start writing books about people I don't have a lot of sympathy for because I'm just going to be with them too long. "
" I looked back at some of my earlier published stories with genuine horror and remorse. I got thinking, How many extant copies might there be, who owns them, and do they keep their doors locked? "
" I'm delighted by how Nobody's Fool turned out. It was a rare movie. "
" I never worry about people not taking my work seriously as a result of the humor. In the end, the comic's best trick is the illusion that comedy is effortless. That people imagine what he's doing is easy is an occupational hazard. "
" I read pretty voraciously. If it's good, I don't care what it is. "
" I suppose all writers worry about the well running dry. "
" I think a lot of what is going on with kids who get pushed too far and attempt either murder or suicide is that they are trying to deal with their own non-existence for the people who are supposed to care most for them. "
" I think it would be harder for me not to write comedy because the comic view of things is the one that comes most naturally to me. "
" I think that if people are instructed about anything, it should be about the nature of cruelty. And about why people behave so cruelly to each other. And what kind of satisfactions they derive from it. And why there is always a cost, and a price to be paid. "
" I think the darker aspect of my fiction-or anybody's fiction-is by its very nature somehow easier to talk about. "
" It's no secret that in my books I'm trying to make the comic and the serious rub up against each other just as closely and uncomfortably as I can. "
" I've never written nearly as much about place as people seem to think I do. I just write about class. "
" I want that which is hilarious and that which is heartbreaking to occupy the same territory in the book because I think they very often occupy the same territory in life, much as we try to separate them. "
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