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Michael Chabon quotes (showing 1-30 of 636)

“There's nothing more embarrassing than to have earned the disfavor of a perceptive animal.”
Michael Chabon, Wonder Boys
“Drunk, Jane spoke as though she were Nancy Drew. I was a fool for a girl with a dainty lexicon.”
Michael Chabon, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh
“In the immemorial style of young men under pressure, they decided to lie down for a while and waste time.”
Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
“The true magic of this broken world lay in the ability of the things it contained to vanish, to become so thoroughly lost, that they might never have existed in the first place.”
Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
“Forget about what you are escaping from. Reserve your anxiety for what you are escaping to.”
Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
“It's always been hard for me to tell the difference between denial and what used to be known as hope.”
Michael Chabon, Wonder Boys
“The whole house seemed to exhale a melancholy breath of emptiness”
Michael Chabon
tags: life
“Man makes plans . . . and God laughs.”
Michael Chabon
“Never say love is "like" anything... It isn't.”
Michael Chabon, The Mysteries Of Pittsburgh
“The problem, if anything, was precisely the opposite. I had too much to write:

too many fine and miserable buildings to construct and streets to name and clock towers to set chiming,

too many characters to raise up from the dirt like flowers whose petals I peeled down to the intricate frail organs within,

too many terrible genetic and fiduciary secrets to dig up and bury and dig up again,

too many divorces to grant,

heirs to disinherit,

trysts to arrange,

letters to misdirect into evil hands,

innocent children to slay with rheumatic fever,

women to leave unfulfilled and hopeless,

men to drive to adultery and theft,

fires to ignite at the hearts of ancient houses. ”
Michael Chabon, Wonder Boys
“It is always so simple, and so complicating, to accept an apology.”
Michael Chabon
“They lay there for a few seconds, in the dark, in the future, listening to the fabulous clockwork of their hearts and lungs, and loving each other”
Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
“We have the idea that our hearts, once broken, scar over with an indestructible tissue that prevents their ever breaking again in quite the same place...”
Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
“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
“When I remember that dizzy summer, that dull, stupid, lovely, dire summer, it seems that in those days I ate my lunches, smelled another's skin, noticed a shade of yellow, even simply sat, with greater lust and hopefulness - and that I lusted with greater faith, hoped with greater abandon. The people I loved were celebrities, surrounded by rumor and fanfare; the places I sat with them, movie lots and monuments. No doubt all of this is not true remembrance but the ruinous work of nostalgia, which obliterates the past, and no doubt, as usual, I have exaggerated everything.”
Michael Chabon, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh
“Every generation loses the Messiah it has failed to deserve.”
Michael Chabon, The Yiddish Policemen's Union
“The magician seemed to promise that something torn to bits might be mended without a seam, that what had vanished might reappear, that a scattered handful of doves or dust might be reunited by a word, that a paper rose consumed by fire could be made to bloom from a pile of ash. But everyone knew that it was only an illusion. The true magic of this broken world lay in the ability of things it contained to vanish, to become so thoroughly lost, that they might never have existed in the first place.”
Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
“As he watched Joe stand, blazing, on the fire escape, Sammy felt an ache in his chest that turned out to be, as so often occurs when memory and desire conjoin with a transient effect of weather, the pang of creation. The desire he felt, watching Joe, was unquestionably physical, but in the sense that Sammy wanted to inhabit the body of his cousin, not possess it. It was, in part, a longing--common enough among the inventors of heroes--to be someone else; to be more than the result of two hundred regimens and scenarios and self-improvement campaigns that always ran afoul of his perennial inability to locate an actual self to be improved. Joe Kavalier had an air of competence, of faith in his own abilities, that Sammy, by means of constant effort over the whole of his life, had finally learned only to fake. ”
Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
tags: self
“I knew that I shouldn’t have, but I did it all the same; and there you have my epitaph, or one of them, because my grave is going to require a monument inscribed on all four sides with rueful mottoes, in small characters, set close together.”
Michael Chabon, Wonder Boys
“I don’t mean to make a big deal out of sobriety, by the way. Of all the modes of human consciousness available to the modern consumer I consider it to be the most overrated.”
Michael Chabon, Wonder Boys
“The fundamental truth: a baseball game is nothing but a great slow contraption for getting you to pay attention to the cadence of a summer day.”
Michael Chabon, Summerland
“Undressing her was an act of recklessness, a kind of vandalism, like releasing a zoo full of animals, or blowing up a dam.”
Michael Chabon, Wonder Boys
“Nothing is boring exept to people who aren't really paying attention.”
Michael Chabon, Summerland
“All novels are sequels; influence is bliss.”
Michael Chabon
“Poor little librarians of the world, those girls, secretly lovely, their looks marred forever by the cruelty of a pair of big dark eyeglasses!”
Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
“No; he could be ruined again and again by hope, but he would never be capable of belief.”
Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
“[My dad] didn't do much apart from the traditional winning of bread. He didn't take me to get my hair cut or my teeth cleaned; he didn't make the appointments. He didn't shop for my clothes. He didn't make my breakfast, lunch, or dinner. My mom did all of those things, and nobody ever told her when she did them that it made her a good mother.”
Michael Chabon, Manhood for Amateurs
“I’d spent my whole life waiting to awake on an ordinary morning in the town that was destined to be my home, in the arms of the woman I was destined to love, knowing the people and doing the work that would make up the changing but essentially invariable landscape of my particular destiny. ”
Michael Chabon, Wonder Boys
“It never takes longer than a few minutes, when they get together, for everyone to revert to the state of nature, like a party marooned by a shipwreck. That's what a family is. Also the storm at sea, the ship, and the unknown shore. And the hats and the whiskey stills that you make out of bamboo and coconuts. And the fire that you light to keep away the beasts.”
Michael Chabon, The Yiddish Policemen's Union
“As long as she was falling in love with me, I might as well start making her promises I didn't intend to keep.”
Michael Chabon, Wonder Boys

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The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
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The Yiddish Policemen's Union The Yiddish Policemen's Union
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Wonder Boys Wonder Boys
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The Mysteries of Pittsburgh The Mysteries of Pittsburgh
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