Jane > Jane's Quotes

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  • #1
    Joan Didion
    “We tell ourselves stories in order to live...We look for the sermon in the suicide, for the social or moral lesson in the murder of five. We interpret what we see, select the most workable of the multiple choices. We live entirely, especially if we are writers, by the imposition of a narrative line upon disparate images, by the "ideas" with which we have learned to freeze the shifting phantasmagoria which is our actual experience.”
    Joan Didion, The White Album

  • #2
    Sherman Alexie
    “Poetry = Anger x Imagination”
    Sherman Alexie, One Stick Song

  • #3
    Neil Gaiman
    “Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.”
    Neil Gaiman, Coraline

  • #4
    Neil Gaiman
    “I can believe things that are true and things that aren't true and I can believe things where nobody knows if they're true or not.

    I can believe in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and the Beatles and Marilyn Monroe and Elvis and Mister Ed. Listen - I believe that people are perfectable, that knowledge is infinite, that the world is run by secret banking cartels and is visited by aliens on a regular basis, nice ones that look like wrinkled lemurs and bad ones who mutilate cattle and want our water and our women.

    I believe that the future sucks and I believe that the future rocks and I believe that one day White Buffalo Woman is going to come back and kick everyone's ass. I believe that all men are just overgrown boys with deep problems communicating and that the decline in good sex in America is coincident with the decline in drive-in movie theaters from state to state.

    I believe that all politicians are unprincipled crooks and I still believe that they are better than the alternative. I believe that California is going to sink into the sea when the big one comes, while Florida is going to dissolve into madness and alligators and toxic waste.

    I believe that antibacterial soap is destroying our resistance to dirt and disease so that one day we'll all be wiped out by the common cold like martians in War of the Worlds.

    I believe that the greatest poets of the last century were Edith Sitwell and Don Marquis, that jade is dried dragon sperm, and that thousands of years ago in a former life I was a one-armed Siberian shaman.

    I believe that mankind's destiny lies in the stars. I believe that candy really did taste better when I was a kid, that it's aerodynamically impossible for a bumble bee to fly, that light is a wave and a particle, that there's a cat in a box somewhere who's alive and dead at the same time (although if they don't ever open the box to feed it it'll eventually just be two different kinds of dead), and that there are stars in the universe billions of years older than the universe itself.

    I believe in a personal god who cares about me and worries and oversees everything I do. I believe in an impersonal god who set the universe in motion and went off to hang with her girlfriends and doesn't even know that I'm alive. I believe in an empty and godless universe of causal chaos, background noise, and sheer blind luck.

    I believe that anyone who says sex is overrated just hasn't done it properly. I believe that anyone who claims to know what's going on will lie about the little things too.

    I believe in absolute honesty and sensible social lies. I believe in a woman's right to choose, a baby's right to live, that while all human life is sacred there's nothing wrong with the death penalty if you can trust the legal system implicitly, and that no one but a moron would ever trust the legal system.

    I believe that life is a game, that life is a cruel joke, and that life is what happens when you're alive and that you might as well lie back and enjoy it.”
    Neil Gaiman, American Gods

  • #5
    Margery Williams
    “Real isn't how you are made,' said the Skin Horse. 'It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.'

    'Does it hurt?' asked the Rabbit.

    'Sometimes,' said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. 'When you are Real you don't mind being hurt.'

    'Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,' he asked, 'or bit by bit?'

    'It doesn't happen all at once,' said the Skin Horse. 'You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand.”
    Margery Williams, The Velveteen Rabbit

  • #6
    Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
    “I remembered the fox. One runs the risk of crying a bit if one allows oneself to be tamed.”
    Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

  • #7
    George Saunders
    “That's it for me. I'm fucked. As per usual. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride. Although come to think of it I was never even the freaking bridesmaid. Look, show your cock. It's the shortest line between two points. The world ain't giving away nice lives. You got a trust fund? You a genius? Show your cock. It's what you got.”
    George Saunders

  • #8
    George Saunders
    “Fuck concepts. Don't be afraid to be confused. Try to remain permanently confused. Anything is possible. Stay open, forever, so open it hurts, and then open up some more, until the day you die, world without end, amen.”
    George Saunders

  • #9
    George Saunders
    “Humor is what happens when we're told the truth quicker and more directly than we're used to.”
    George Saunders, The Braindead Megaphone

  • #10
    Cormac McCarthy
    “Nobody wants to be here and nobody wants to leave.”
    Cormac McCarthy, The Road
    tags: life

  • #11
    Neil Gaiman
    “Name the different kinds of people,’ said Miss Lupescu. ‘Now.’

    Bod thought for a moment. ‘The living,’ he said. ‘Er. The dead.’ He stopped. Then, ‘... Cats?’ he offered, uncertainly.”
    Neil Gaiman, The Graveyard Book

  • #12
    Kurt Vonnegut
    “Still and all, why bother? Here’s my answer. Many people need desperately to receive this message: I feel and think much as you do, care about many of the things you care about, although most people do not care about them. You are not alone.”
    Kurt Vonnegut

  • #13
    Markus Zusak
    “A small but noteworthy note. I've seen so many young men over the years who think they're running at other young men. They are not. They are running at me.”
    Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

  • #14
    Dr. Seuss
    “How did it get so late so soon? It's night before it's afternoon. December is here before it's June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?”
    Dr. Seuss

  • #15
    Mary Doria Russell
    “...I begin with songs. They provide a sort of skeleton grammar for me to flesh out. Songs of longing for future tense, songs of regret for past tense, and songs of love for present tense.”
    Mary Doria Russell, The Sparrow

  • #16
    Geoff Dyer
    “Have regrets. They are fuel. On the page they flare into desire.”
    Geoff Dyer

  • #17
    Neil Gaiman
    “When I was a child, adults would tell me not to make things up, warning me of what would happen if I did. As far as I can tell so far, it seems to involve lots of foreign travel and not having to get up too early in the morning.”
    Neil Gaiman, Smoke and Mirrors: Short Fiction and Illusions

  • #18
    Madeleine L'Engle
    “We are all strangers in a strange land, longing for home, but not quite knowing what or where home is. We glimpse it sometimes in our dreams, or as we turn a corner, and suddenly there is a strange, sweet familiarity that vanishes almost as soon as it comes.”
    Madeleine L'Engle

  • #19
    T.S. Eliot
    “For last year's words belong to last year's language
    And next year's words await another voice.”
    T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets

  • #20
    Jennifer Egan
    “Time’s a goon, right? You gonna let that goon push you around?” Scotty shook his head. “The goon won.”
    Jennifer Egan, A Visit from the Goon Squad
    tags: time

  • #21
    Angela Carter
    “She herself is a haunted house. She does not possess herself; her ancestors sometimes come and peer out of the windows of her eyes and that is very frightening.”
    Angela Carter, The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories

  • #22
    Angela Carter
    “The tiger will never lie down with the lamb; he acknowledges no pact that is not reciprocal. The lamb must learn to run with the tigers.”
    Angela Carter

  • #23
    Sharon Olds
    “I was a late bloomer. But anyone who blooms at all, ever, is very lucky. ”
    Sharon Olds

  • #24
    Colette
    “You will do foolish things, but do them with enthusiasm.”
    Colette

  • #25
    Franz Kafka
    “A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us.”
    Franz Kafka

  • #26
    George Orwell
    “All writers are vain, selfish, and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives there lies a mystery. Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand. For all one knows that demon is simply the same instinct that makes a baby squall for attention. And yet it is also true that one can write nothing readable unless one constantly struggles to efface one's own personality. Good prose is like a windowpane.”
    George Orwell, Why I Write

  • #27
    David Lynch
    “I learned that just beneath the surface there's another world, and still different worlds as you dig deeper. I knew it as a kid, but I couldn't find the proof. It was just a kind of feeling. There is goodness in blue skies and flowers, but another force--a wild pain and decay--also accompanies everything.”
    David Lynch

  • #28
    Michael Chabon
    “You need three things to become a successful novelist: talent, luck and discipline. Discipline is the one element of those three things that you can control, and so that is the one that you have to focus on controlling, and you just have to hope and trust in the other two.”
    Michael Chabon

  • #29
    Robert Hass
    “It's hell writing and it's hell not writing. The only tolerable state is having just written.”
    Robert Hass

  • #30
    Errol Morris
    “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it without a sense of ironic futility.”
    Errol Morris



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