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" I'm a dull person. "
" American art in general... takes to surreal exaggerations and metaphors; but its Puritan work ethic has little use for the playful self-indulgence behind Parisian Surrealism. "
" But for a few phrases from his letters and an odd line or two of his verse, the poet walks gagged through his own biography. "
" America is a vast conspiracy to make you happy. "
" I suppose sequels are inevitable for a writer of a certain age. "
" By the time a partnership dissolves, it has dissolved. "
" Writing criticism is to writing fiction and poetry as hugging the shore is to sailing in the open sea. "
" I love my government not least for the extent to which it leaves me alone. "
" I love Shillington not as one loves Capri or New York, because they are special, but as one loves one's own body and consciousness, because they are synonymous with being. "
" In fiction, imaginary people become realer to us than any named celebrity glimpsed in a series of rumored events, whose causes and subtler ramifications must remain in the dark. An invented figure like Anna Karenina or Emma Bovary emerges fully into the light of understanding, which brings with it identification, sympathy and pity. "
" The cinema has done more for my spiritual life than the church. My ideas of fame, success and beauty all originate from the big screen. Whereas Christian religion is retreating everywhere and losing more and more influence; film has filled the vacuum and supports us with myths and action-controlling images. "
" Old age treats freelance writers pretty gently. "
" The inner spaces that a good story lets us enter are the old apartments of religion. "
" Rain is grace; rain is the sky descending to the earth; without rain, there would be no life. "
" Inspiration arrives as a packet of material to be delivered. "
" There's almost nothing worse to live with than a struggling artist. "
" Toni Morrison has a habit, perhaps traceable to the pernicious influence of William Faulkner, of plunging into the narrative before the reader has a clue to what is going on. "
" Some golfers, we are told, enjoy the landscape; but properly, the landscape shrivels and compresses into the grim, surrealistically vivid patch of grass directly under the golfer's eyes as he morosely walks toward where he thinks his ball might be. "
" My transition from wanting to be a cartoonist to wanting to be a writer may have come about through that friendly opposition, that even-handed pairing, of pictures and words. "
" Creativity is merely a plus name for regular activity. Any activity becomes creative when the doer cares about doing it right, or better. "
" New York is, of course, many cities, and an exile does not return to the one he left. "
" The theme of old age doesn't seem to fascinate Hollywood. "
" It's so hard to make a good tee shot after a birdie. "
" Truth should not be forced; it should simply manifest itself, like a woman who has in her privacy reflected and coolly decided to bestow herself upon a certain man. "
" In any interview, you do say more or less than you mean. "
" Every marriage tends to consist of an aristocrat and a peasant. Of a teacher and a learner. "
" Professionalism in art has this difficulty: To be professional is to be dependable, to be dependable is to be predictable, and predictability is esthetically boring - an anti-virtue in a field where we hope to be astonished and startled and at some deep level refreshed. "
" In my first 15 or 20 years of authorship, I was almost never asked to give a speech or an interview. The written work was supposed to speak for itself, and to sell itself, sometimes even without the author's photograph on the back flap. "
" I have never liked haircuts. "
" Tiger Woods did not always win majors with ease; after his narrow victory in the 1999 PGA, he slumped and sighed as if he'd been carrying rocks uphill all afternoon. "
" Sometimes it seems the whole purpose of pets is to bring death into the house. "