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" All my adult life I have been searching for the right adjective to describe my father's peculiarly aggressive comic style. I recently settled on 'defamatory.' "
" Watching an adaptation of your novel can be a violent experience: seeing your old jokes suddenly thrust at you can be alarming. But I started to enjoy 'Money' very quickly, and then I relaxed. "
" The literary interview won't tell you what a writer is like. Far more compellingly to some, it will tell you what a writer is like to interview. "
" In America, the policeman is a working-class hero. In England, the policeman is a working-class traitor. "
" Every writer hopes or boldly assumes that his life is in some sense exemplary, that the particular will turn out to be universal. "
" If every inhabitant of a liberal democracy believes in liberal democracy, then it doesn't matter what creed or colour they are. "
" No novel has ever changed anything, as far as I can see. "
" The middle class is doing fine in fiction. But it's not what gets me going. I love the working class, and everyone from it I've met, and think they're incredibly witty, inventive - there's a lot of poetry there. "
" Kingsley Amis was a lenient father. His paternal style, in the early years, can best be described as amiably minimalist - in other words, my mother did it all. "
" My literary career kicked off in 1956 when, as a resident of Swansea, South Wales, I published my first novel, 'Lucky Jim.' "
" Only in art will the lion lie down with the lamb, and the rose grow without thorn. "
" Novelists tend to go off at 70, and I'm in a funk about it, I've got myself into a real paranoid funk about it, how the talent dies before the body. "
" It's an ancient idea that the leader of a democracy should not be the cleverest but the most average. That's an arguable point, but the world has decided otherwise - except in America, where it still divides the country right down the middle. "
" Tennis: the most perfect combination of athleticism, artistry, power, style, and wit. A beautiful game, but one so remorselessly travestied by the passage of time. "
" You cannot combine being a movie star with not being a movie star. "
" If God existed, and if He cared for humankind, He would never have given us religion. "
" It's becoming clearer and clearer to me that the world is there to be celebrated by writers, and in fact this is what all the good ones do, and that the great fashion for gloom and grimness was in fact a false path that certain writers took, I think in response to the horrors of the first half of the twentieth century. "
" Bullets cannot be recalled. They cannot be uninvented. But they can be taken out of the gun. "
" Money doesn't mind if we say it's evil, it goes from strength to strength. It's a fiction, an addiction, and a tacit conspiracy. "
" I am, incidentally, the only writer to have received the Somerset Maugham award twice - the first time for my first novel, the second time for my second first novel. "
" Weapons are like money; no one knows the meaning of enough. "
" When I wrote 'The Pregnant Widow' three or four years ago, I tried to reread my first novel, 'The Rachel Papers,' because their young heroes are the same age. I couldn't finish it. It seemed to me so technically slapdash and weak. "
" Deciding to write a novel about something - as opposed to finding you are writing a novel around something - sounds to me like a good evocation of writer's block. "
" Style is not neutral; it gives moral directions. "