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Quotes About Plot

Quotes tagged as "plot" (showing 1-30 of 62)
Philip Pullman
“I'm trying to undermine the basis of Christian belief... I'm not in the business of offending people. I find the books upholding certain values that I think are important, such as life is immensely valuable and this world is an extraordinarily beautiful place. We should do what we can to increase the amount of wisdom in the world.

[Washington Post interview, 19 February 2001]”
Philip Pullman

Charles Baxter
“When all the details fit in perfectly, something is probably wrong with the story.”
Charles Baxter, Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction

Khaled Hosseini
“Writing fiction is the act of weaving a series of lies to arrive at a greater truth.”
Khaled Hosseini

J.R. Moehringer
“I hate when people ask what a book is about. People who read for plot, people who suck out the story like the cream filling in an Oreo, should stick to comic strips and soap operas. . . . Every book worth a damn is about emotions and love and death and pain. It's about words. It's about a man dealing with life. Okay?”
J.R. Moehringer

Shannon Hale
“But, how do you know if an ending is truly good for the characters unless you've traveled with them through every page?”
Shannon Hale, Midnight in Austenland

Ray Bradbury
“Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations.”
Ray Bradbury, Zen in the Art of Writing

F. Scott Fitzgerald
“Character is plot, plot is character.”
F. Scott Fitzgerald

Alan Moore
“Dan, I'm not a Republic serial villain. Do you seriously think I'd explain my master-stroke if there remained the slightest chance of you affecting its outcome? I did it thirty-five minutes ago.”
Alan Moore, Watchmen

Douglas Coupland
“You keep waiting for the moral of your life to become obvious, but it never does. Work, work, work: No moral. No plot. No eureka! Just production schedules and days. You might as well be living inside a photocopier. Your lives are all they're ever going to be.”
Douglas Coupland, Player One: What Is to Become of Us

George R.R. Martin
“But my philosophy is that plot advancement is not what the experience of reading fiction is about. If all we care about is advancing the plot, why read novels? We can just read Cliffs Notes.”
George R.R. Martin
tags: plot

Stephen King
“Story is honorable and trustworthy; plot is shifty, and best kept under house arrest.”
Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

Connie Willis
“I learned everything I know about plot from Dame Agatha (Christie).”
Connie Willis, The Winds of Marble Arch and Other Stories

Joyce Carol Oates
“But he doesn't love her. I invented that. It is a plot if you imagine people in love--the lazy looping criss crosses of love, blows, stares, tears. No. It doesn't happen. No love. People meet, touch, stare into one another's faces, shake their heads clear, move on, forget. It doesn't happen.”
Joyce Carol Oates, Marriages and Infidelities

Jeffrey Eugenides
“Reading a novel after reading semiotic theory was like jogging empty-handed after jogging with hand weights. What exquisite guilt she felt, wickedly enjoying narrative! Madeleine felt safe with a nineteenth century novel. There were going to be people in it. Something was going to happen to them in a place resembling the world. Then too there were lots of weddings in Wharton and Austen. There were all kinds of irresistible gloomy men.”
Jeffrey Eugenides, The Marriage Plot

Patricia C. Wrede
“(In reply to the question, 'Would you like some suggestions for a plot for your next book?')

There are three problems with getting plot suggestions from other people. The first is that ideas are the easy part of writing; finding the time and energy to get them down on paper is the hard part. I have plenty of ideas already. Which brings me to the second problem: the ideas that excite you, the ones you think would make a terrific book, are not necessarily the same ideas that excite me. And if a writer isn't excited about an idea, she generally doesn't turn out a terrific book, even if the idea is terrific. And the third problem with my using your suggestions is that, theoretically, you could sue me if I did, and that tends to make publishers nervous, which makes it hard to sell a book. So thank you, but no.”
Patricia C. Wrede

P.G. Wodehouse
“The principle I always go on in writing a novel is to think of the characters in terms of actors in a play. I say to myself, if a big name were playing this part, and if he found that after a strong first act he had practically nothing to do in the second act, he would walk out. Now, then, can I twist the story so as to give him plenty to do all the way through? I believe the only way a writer can keep himself up to the mark is by examining each story quite coldly before he starts writing it and asking himself it is all right as a story. I mean, once you go saying to yourself, "This is a pretty weak plot as it stands, but if I'm such a hell of a writer that my magic touch will make it okay," you're sunk. If they aren't in interesting situations, characters can't be major characters, not even if you have the rest of the troop talk their heads off about them."

(Interview, The Paris Review, Issue 64, Winter 1975)”
P.G. Wodehouse

Rebecca McKinsey
“Stories start in all sorts of places. Where they begin often tells the reader of what to expect as they progress. Castles often lead to dragons, country estates to deeds of deepest love (or of hate), and ambiguously presented settings usually lead to equally as ambiguous characters and plot, leaving a reader with an ambiguous feeling of disappointment. That's one of the worst kinds.”
Rebecca McKinsey, Sydney West

Jodi Picoult
“Life is not a plot; it's in the details.”
Jodi Picoult, Vanishing Acts

Stephen King
“There's an old rule of theater that goes, 'If there's a gun on the mantel in Act I, it must go off in Act III.' The reverse is also true.”
Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

Ray Bradbury
“Remember: Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations. Plot is observed after the fact rather than before. It cannot precede action. It is the chart that remains when an action
is through. That is all Plot ever should be. It is human desire let
run, running, and reaching a goal. It cannot be mechanical. It can
only be dynamic. So, stand aside, forget targets, let the characters, your fingers, body, blood, and heart do.”
Ray Bradbury

“Be a good listener in the special way a story requires: note the manner of presentation; the development of plot, character; the addition of new dramatic sequences; the emphasis accorded to one figure or another in the recital; and the degree of enthusiam, of coherence, the narrator gives to his or her account.”
Robert Coles, The Call of Stories: Teaching and the Moral Imagination

Steven Brust
“I have a clever and devious plan.”
Steven Brust, Iorich
tags: plot

Pat Conroy
“In our modern age, there are writers who have heaped scorn on the very idea of the primacy of story. I'd rather warm my hands on a sunlit ice floe than try to coax fire from the books they carve from glaciers.”
Pat Conroy, My Reading Life

Reif Larsen
“A novel is a tricky thing to map.”
Reif Larsen, The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet

“What monster sleeps in the deep of your story? You need a monster. Without a monster there is no story.”
Billy Marshall

Aristotle
“We maintain, therefore, that the first essential, the life and soul, so to speak, of Tragedy is the Plot; and that the Characters come second—compare the parallel in painting, where the most beautiful colours laid on without order will not give one the same pleasure as a simple black-and-white sketch of a portrait.”
Aristotle, The Rhetoric & The Poetics of Aristotle

Marisha Pessl
“A deus ex machina will never appear in real life so you best make other arrangements.”
Marisha Pessl, Special Topics in Calamity Physics

Aristotle
“The tragic fear and pity may be aroused by the Spectacle; but they may also be aroused by the very structure and incidents of the play—which is the better way and shows the better poet. The Plot in fact should be so framed that even without seeing the things take place, he who simply hears the account of them shall be filled with horror and pity at the incidents; which is just the effect that the mere recital of the story in Oedipus would have on one. To produce this same effect by means of the Spectacle is less artistic, and requires extraneous aid.”
Aristotle, The Rhetoric & The Poetics of Aristotle

Aristotle
“The truth is that, just as in the other imitative arts one imitation is always of one thing, so in poetry the story, as an imitation of action, must represent one action, a complete whole, with its several incidents so closely connected that the transposal or withdrawal of any one of them will disjoin and dislocate the whole. For that which makes no perceptible difference by its presence or absence is no real part of the whole.”
Aristotle, The Rhetoric & The Poetics of Aristotle

“Despite my affection for subtext and plot and prose at its best... life, it turns out, is nothing more than the finer details.”
Bailey Vincent, The Details of How We Lived

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