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" Definition of a classic: a book everyone is assumed to have read and often thinks they have. "
" I have no nickname, as there has never been any need for one. "
" Were we closer to the ground as children, or is the grass emptier now? "
" I write plays about things that I can't resolve in my mind. I try to root things out. "
" I always like to break out and address the audience. In 'The History Boys', for instance, without any ado, the boys will suddenly turn and talk to the audience and then go back into the action. I find it more adventurous doing it in prose than on the stage, but I like being able to make the reader suddenly sit up. "
" We were put to Dickens as children but it never quite took. That unremitting humanity soon had me cheesed off. "
" I'm more socialist certainly than New Labour - I'm very old Labour, really. "
" I can't complain that I've had a public all through my writing life, but people don't quite know what I've written. People don't read you too closely. Perhaps, after I've died, they'll look at my stuff, and read it through, and find there's more in it. That may be wrong, but that's what I comfort myself with. "
" We started off trying to set up a small anarchist community, but people wouldn't obey the rules. "
" Life is like a box of sardines and we are all looking for the key. "
" I've never seen the point of the sea, except where it meets the land. The shore has a point. The sea has none. "
" I always feel over-appreciated but underestimated. "
" Closing a public library is child abuse, really, because it hinders child development. "
" Life is generally something that happens elsewhere. "
" Full-blooded romantic love I wouldn't be able to write about. "
" Your whole life is on the other side of the glass. And there is nobody watching. "
" Cancer, like any other illness, is a bore. "
" If you think squash is a competitive activity, try flower arranging. "
" My films are about embarrassment. "
" The bits I most remember about my school days are those that took place outside the classroom, as we were taken on countless theatre visits and trips to places of interest. "
" I do not long for the world as it was when I was a child. I do not long for the person I was in that world. I do not want to be the person I am now in that world then. None of the forms nostalgia can take fits. I found childhood boring. I was glad it was over. "
" I didn't even have a clear idea of why I wanted to go to Oxford - apart from the fact I had fallen in love with the architecture. It certainly wasn't out of some great sense of academic or intellectual achievement. In many ways, my education only began after I'd left university. "
" I'm all in favour of free expression provided it's kept rigidly under control. "
" Children always assume the sexual lives of their parents come to a grinding halt at their conception. "
" I don't believe in private education. "