Janet Fitch


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Janet Fitch

Goodreads Author


Born
in Los Angeles, California, The United States
Website

Twitter

Member Since
August 2008

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Janet Fitch was born in Los Angeles, a third-generation native, and grew up in a family of voracious readers. As an undergraduate at Reed College, Fitch had decided to become an historian, attracted to its powerful narratives, the scope of events, the colossal personalities, and the potency and breadth of its themes. But when she won a student exchange to Keele University in England, where her passion for Russian history led her, she awoke in the middle of the night on her twenty-first birthday with the revelation she wanted to write fiction. "I wanted to Live, not spend my life in a library. Of course, my conception of being a writer was to wear a cape and have Adventures." She has acquired a couple of capes since then, and a few adventure ...more

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Janet Fitch A movie can never be a book, can never replicate the experience. It can only be inspired by a book, and hopefully be a worthwhile piece of art in…moreA movie can never be a book, can never replicate the experience. It can only be inspired by a book, and hopefully be a worthwhile piece of art in itself. It is very flattering when one artist wants to base a work of art on my work of art. But you can't control what they do with it. Van Gogh could paint a Pieta 'after Delacroix'. But Delacroix didn't stand there and go, "well, that's not what I would do." Delacroix already painted his picture, and Van Gogh wanted to do something based on it. THat's how I feel about a film based on something I've written. I loved the film, but the book still exists. (less)
Janet Fitch Read all the time. Read hard books, you don't get better playing tennis with someone who's at your own level. Try copying out a paragraph of something…moreRead all the time. Read hard books, you don't get better playing tennis with someone who's at your own level. Try copying out a paragraph of something great to see what it would be like writing that yourself. Take the basic structure of the sentences and try substituting your own words. Think up assignments for yourself--find a photograph and go into it, make up a story about what's happening in it. Tune your senses. Carry a notebook and capture everything. (less)
Average rating: 3.91 · 252,489 ratings · 6,715 reviews · 9 distinct works · Similar authors
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More books by Janet Fitch…
It's been a long and winding road, but the movie based on my novel Paint It Black--directed by Amber Tamblyn and starring Alia Shawkat, Janet McTeer and Alfred Molina--was picked up by Imagination Worldwide and will be released in April 2017. It'll be the royal treatment, theatrical release, streaming...

It's a beautiful, expressionistic treatment of the book--think David Lynch, and in certain... Read more of this blog post »
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Published on January 13, 2017 09:22 • 135 views

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1917: Stories and...
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Janet’s Recent Updates

Follies of God by James Grissom
"I have not been so moved by a book in a very long time. This book unfolds so beautifully, as a young writer, so unsure of himself, is led by an older, great man, also unsure of himself, but so desperate to find out if he matters to anyone, perhaps..." Read more of this review »
Follies of God by James Grissom
"When I see the news reporting tragedy, I pray for more love & laughter all around.

"The world is violent and mercurial - it will have its way with you. We are saved only by love - love for each other and the love that we pour into the art we f..." Read more of this review »
Follies of God by James Grissom
"Follies of God: Tennessee Williams and the Women of the Fog
by James Grissom

The book entered my awareness through a “Like” page on Facebook.
A Follies of God “Like” page was being “Liked” by some of my Facebook friends, or maybe the posts were “spo..." Read more of this review »
Follies of God by James Grissom
"An extraordinarily moving book, and one that almost defies categorization. It is a memoir; it is a biography; it is a book about the creative act of writing. Really sui generis. The writing is extraordinary--so perfectly polished and feeling, and..." Read more of this review »
" Hella wrote: "Omg I am so excited! Thanks for sharing such great news with us, dear Janet! :)

P.S: I couldn't find the gif on your facebook page. Would
...more "
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Follies of God by James Grissom
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A fascinating book about Tennessee Williams that itself could have been a play. A young boy writes a letter to a great writer asking for advice about how he could become a writer too. Instead of getting a letter in return, he is invited from his home ...more
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So Much Smoke
by Felix Calvino (Goodreads Author)
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Secondhand Time by Svetlana Alexievich
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More of Janet's books…
“
Loneliness is the human condition. Cultivate it. The way it tunnels into you allows your soul room to grow. Never expect to outgrow loneliness. Never hope to find people who will understand you, someone to fill that space. An intelligent, sensitive person is the exception, the very great exception. If you expect to find people who will understand you, you will grow murderous with disappointment. The best you'll ever do is to understand yourself, know what it is that you want, and not let the cattle stand in your way.”
Janet Fitch, White Oleander

“Always learn poems by heart. They have to become the marrow in your bones. Like fluoride in the water, they'll make your soul impervious to the world's soft decay.”
Janet Fitch, White Oleander

“Remember it all, every insult, every tear. Tattoo it on the inside of your mind. In life, knowledge of poisons is essential. I've told you, nobody becomes an artist unless they have to.”
Janet Fitch

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“Many couples, many people, are not living with real human beings, but with their ghosts. Who has not followed for years the spell of a particular tone of voice, from voice to voice, as the fetishist follows a beautiful foot, scarcely seeing the woman herself? A voice, a mouth, an eye, all stemming from the original fountain of our first desire, directing it, enslaving us, until we choose to unravel the fatal web and free ourselves.”
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“The role of a writer is not to say what we can all say, but what we are unable to say.”
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Comments (showing 1-29)    post a comment »
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message 29: by Janet

Janet Thanks Eugenia! Wish you good reading!


message 28: by Eugenia

Eugenia Hi Janet,
Thank you for accepting my friend request. I am honoured of being friends on Goodreads and I want to tell you how much I enjoyed reading White Oleander. It is such a beautiful book.

Eugenia


message 27: by Janet

Janet Hi Amy,
Thank you for taking the time to send me this moving comment. I'm sorry for the circumstances in which you discovered my novel, but very glad it was there for you. Books keep us company in ways nothing else can quite do. Appreciate this note and hope things work out better for you!
all best wishes,
Janet F.


message 26: by Amy

Amy Wells Janet,
I discovered White Oleander this year in jail, of all places. How ironic for me-- The most beautiful book ever written unveiled to me through the darkest recesses of my life.
I want you to know that White Oleander got me through that time. I read, and re-read, and re-read, and re-read White Oleander, continuously, over the course of 5 months. I didn't know how something so beautiful could be found in such a lonely place, but alas, it was there-- unearthed from its grave in "true crime" novels.
Thank you for creating that world to be lost within.
~Amy


message 25: by Janet

Janet Steve wrote: "Thanks Janet, for accepting my friend request.

Steve"


Thanks for finding me here--hope you like the books!


message 24: by Steve

Steve Thanks Janet, for accepting my friend request.

Steve


message 23: by Dustin

Dustin Janet wrote: "Dustin wrote: "Hi, Janet!

I hope all's well with you and yours.:)

Thank you for accepting my friendship request, it's always appreciated. Also, I wanted to tell you that White Oleander has been ..."


Thank you for writing it! I think I will enjoy it.:)


message 22: by Janet

Janet Dustin wrote: "Hi, Janet!

I hope all's well with you and yours.:)

Thank you for accepting my friendship request, it's always appreciated. Also, I wanted to tell you that White Oleander has been on my "to read"..."


Hope you enjoy it! Good reading and happy holidays,
Janet


message 21: by Janet

Janet Angela wrote: "Miss Janet,
I am pretty sure I have written to you on here before but I am writing again because I believe this should be embedded into your heart like your book is embedded into mine: you were tru..."


Hi Angela,
Thanks for this lovely post. HOpe you have a chance to read Paint It Black while I'm busily finishing up the new book! Wish you good reading and thanks for the shoring-up!
all best,
Janet


message 20: by Dustin

Dustin Hi, Janet!

I hope all's well with you and yours.:)

Thank you for accepting my friendship request, it's always appreciated. Also, I wanted to tell you that White Oleander has been on my "to read" list for a couple years now, and I'll finally be reading it in a couple weeks. I'm very much looking forward to it!



Have a wonderful day, enjoy the rest of your week!!


message 19: by Angela

Angela Shrum Miss Janet,
I am pretty sure I have written to you on here before but I am writing again because I believe this should be embedded into your heart like your book is embedded into mine: you were truly meant to be a writer. Your words are lyrics to the soul. White Oleander is my favorite book of all time, and every time I read it, I find something else to love and relate to. You will never understand how much this book has helped me because there are no available words. I consider you a blessing for writing it and motivating me to pick up a pen myself. I keep hoping and praying for another book from you, whenever you are ready. Until then, I will continue hold my several copies of White Oleander near and dear. Thank you for having the courage to publish such a beautiful piece.
Always a fan,
~Angela.


message 18: by Kathryn

Kathryn Janet, thank you so much for accepting my friend request. I read White Oleander when I first started college. It reminded me a lot of my own relationship with my mother. It's one of my all-time favorite books. I have read it twice, and I plan to read it again and again. Both times I've read it, I have taken away something new. I had been looking for a long time for Paint It Black, and finally found a copy last week. I can't wait to read it in a few days. Thanks again for accepting my friend request!


message 17: by S

S <3


Anastasia Hi Janet. Glad to be your friend.


Lady Jane Hi, Janet! Thank you so much for accepting my friend request. It was such a pleasure to escort you, Julie Otsuka, and Christopher Tilghman at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at USC on April 21st! I hear great things about "White Oleander," I must add it to my "Books To Read Before I Die" list!


Christina White I can't praise you enough for White Oleander. It was amazing and your words are still with me! I like to think of myself as a phoenix now.....

Thank you!


message 13: by Lisa

Lisa Thanks for accepting my friend request. :-)


message 12: by Janet

Janet THanks David! Look forward to following you, loved comparing the books and seeing that long skein of overlap--and then fun to see the rest. I just stopped by Petersburg to see if anyone had read it. It was like wrestling an active, slender, brightly colored snake...
all best and good reading
Janet


message 11: by David

David Lentz Dear Janet,
Thanks for the add and like on Biely.
Your shelf is exquisite, especially the Russians.
Loved "White Oleander."
Please stay in touch.
Cordially,
David


Christine Hatfield Thanks for being my friend


serafina Thank you for adding me. White Oleander is a book which reached me on a profound and inexplicable level. I first read it 8 years ago when I was 17; I was submerged in a very dark, lonely, desolate period of my life. I could not put the book down, I brought it with me everywhere until I finished it. I felt very connected to Astrid. I remember sitting in one of my classes reading the final scene with Claire as the tears streamed down my face. And when I finished the book, I felt this clear and overwhelming sense of fulfillment within my heart. I wished it never had to end because it filled a void that had only been deepening by the day. I am so grateful that someone captured the experiences of this young woman and the mother-daughter relationship in a way that moved me deeply, and for which I aspired to convey myself (as I am also a writer). White Oleander is truly a gift. Thank you for writing it.


Melissa Thanks for adding me as a friend! White Oleander is my favourite book of all time!!!!


Meghan I'm sure you are asked this every day... when will the next book be out?
Meghan


Kasia The Bookworm I love your choice of reads.


message 5: by Jeane

Jeane thanks for the add, janet! i love white oleander! the references in and around los angeles really amused me since i grew up in the area. my friend and i were really excited about the thrifty in alhambra, haha. :)

x
jeane.


message 4: by May

May Bee Miss Janet,
Thank you so much for accepting my friend request && for actually B E I N G my first actual friend here in Goodreads.com :D
BTW, I loved White Oleander. (:

-Maggieeee. :")


trivialchemy Thanks for the add! The Sheltering Sky, indeed.


message 2: by Nahid

Nahid Rachlin Dear Janet, I loved White Oleander. Nahid Rachlin


message 1: by Lisa

Lisa See Oh, Janet, How fun and funny that we get to be friends this way too.


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