Pat Conroy Quotes

Quotes tagged as "pat-conroy" (showing 1-30 of 41)
Pat Conroy
“There was a time when a new deputy tried to teach Mr. Fruit about the difference between a red and a green light, but Mr. Fruit had resisted all efforts to reorder what he had been doing perfectly well for many years. He had not only monitored the comings and goings of the town, his presence softened the ingrained evil that flourished along the invisible margins of the town’s consciousness. Any community can be judged in its humanity or corruption by how it manages to accommodate the Mr. Fruits of the world. Colleton simply adjusted itself to Mr. Fruit’s harmonies and ordinations. He did whatever he felt was needed and he did it with style. “That’s the Southern way” my grandmother said. “That’s the nice way.”
Pat Conroy, The Prince of Tides

Pat Conroy
“South Carolina is not a state; it is a cult.”
Pat Conroy

Pat Conroy
“If any writer in this country has collected as fine and passionate a group of readers as I have, they’re fortunate and lucky beyond anyone’s imagination. It remains a shock to me that I’ve had a successful writing career. Not someone like me; Lord, there were too many forces working against me, too many dark currents pushing against me, but it somehow worked. Though I wish I’d written a lot more, been bolder with my talent, more forgiving of my weaknesses, I’ve managed to draw a magic audience into my circle. They come to my signings to tell me stories, their stories. The ones that have hurt them and made their nights long and their lives harder.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“The choices I didn’t make are almost as ruinous as the ones I did.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“I have always been attracted to male writers who can demonstrate their love and affection for women with ease, yet not draw attention to themselves.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“Throughout my career I’ve lived in constant fear that I wouldn’t be good enough, that I’d have nothing to say, that I’d be laughed at, humiliated—and I’m old enough to know that fear will follow me to the very last word I’ll ever write. As for now, I feel the first itch of the novel I’m supposed to write—the grain of sand that irritates the soft tissues of the oyster. The beginning of the world as I don’t quite know it. But I trust I’ll begin to know it soon.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“Humor has always been the redemptive angel in the Conroys’s sad history. With this family, I shall never grow hungry from lack of material.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“A nation of unhappy teachers makes for a sadder and more endangered America.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“I envy the tireless intimacy of women’s friendship, its lastingness, and its unbendable strength.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“Moonrise is a fabulous novel and my damn wife wrote it and that’s me up there near Highlands shouting it out to the hills.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“Teaching remains a heroic act to me, and teachers live a necessary and all-important life. We are killing their spirit with unnecessary pressure and expectation that seem forced and destructive to me. Long ago I was one of them. I still regret I was forced to leave them. My entire body of work is because of men and women like them.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“In matters of good-lookingness, we writers are the ugliest of the bunch, and normally our appearance is akin to that of someone investigating a crime scene; though the women in American writing keep producing world-class beauty in droves, and there are many breathtaking writers among them.”
Pat Conroy

Pat Conroy
“Though I’ve never met a teacher who was not happy in retirement, I rarely meet one who thinks that their teaching life was not a grand way to spend a human life. The unhappy ones are the young ones, those who must teach in public schools when the whole nation seems at war with the very essence of teaching.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“The teachers of my life saved my life and sent me out prepared for whatever life I was meant to lead. Like everyone else, I had some bad ones and mediocre ones, but I never had one that I thought was holding me back because of idleness or thoughtlessness. They spent their lives with the likes of me and I felt safe during the time they spent with me. The best of them made me want to be just like them. I wanted young kids to look at me the way I looked at the teachers who loved me. Loving them was not difficult for a boy like me. They lit a path for me, and one that I followed with joy.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“It eases my soul that I share a house with [Cassandra King] a novelist of such rare and distinctive gifts.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“When we cuss each other out, call each other the vilest names on earth, and put each other down with thoughtless cruelty, it is the only way we know and the only language we have to express our ardent love for each other.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“A new novel awaits my arrival, prepares for my careful inspection. Yet a novel is always a long dream that lives in me for years before I know where to go to hunt it out.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“Because I’ve gotten older, I worry that there will be a steep decline in my talent, but I promise not to let the same thing happen to my passion for writing.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“My career still strikes me as miraculous. That a boy raised on Marine bases in the South, taught by Roman Catholic nuns in backwater Southern towns that loathed Catholics, and completed his education with an immersion into The Citadel—the whole story sounds fabricated, impossible even to me. Maybe especially to me.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“Over the years he began displaying that rarest of intellectual gifts—the ability and willingness to change his mind and do it in an orderly, well-reasoned way.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“The reading of great books has been a life-altering activity to me and, for better or worse, brought me singing and language-obsessed to that country where I make my living. Except for teaching, I’ve had no other ambition in life than to write books that mattered.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“Generosity is the rarest of qualities in American writers.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“I’ve always felt a vague sense of guilt that I search for plunder and inspiration in every book or poem or story I pick up. Other people’s books are treasures when stories emerge in molten ingots that a writer can shape to fit his or her own talents. Magical theft has always played an important part of my own writer’s imagination.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“I don’t know when reading books became the most essential thing about me, but it happened over the years and I found myself the most willing servant of what I considered a rich habit.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“Among the worst things about growing old is the loss of those irreplaceable friends who added richness and depth to your life.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“I consider the two years in Beaufort when I taught high school as perhaps the happiest time of my life. My attraction to melodrama and suffering had not yet overwhelmed me, but signs of it were surfacing. No one had warned me that a teacher could fall so completely in love with his students that graduation seemed like the death of a small civilization.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“From the beginning, I’ve told journalists that I planned to write better than any writer of my era who graduated from an Ivy League college. It sounds boastful and it is. But The Citadel taught me that I was a man of courage when I survived that merciless crucible of a four-year test that is the measure of The Citadel experience. I’m the kind of writer I am because of The Citadel.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“I was raised in the Marine Corps and I was taught as a boy that you feed your own men before you feed yourself. It was my belief then, and it remains so today, that my platoon who loves and respect me will slaughter your platoon that hates you. But here is the great lesson I took from the plebe system—it let me know exactly the kind of man I wanted to become. It made me ache to be a contributing citizen in whatever society I found myself in, to live out a life I could be proud of, and always to measure up to what I took to be the highest ideal of a Citadel man—or, now, a Citadel woman. The standards were clear to me and they were high, and I took my marching orders from my college to take my hard-won education and go out to try to make the whole world a better place.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“I was a watchful boy being raised by a father I didn’t admire. In a desperate way, I needed the guidance of someone who could show me another way of becoming a man. It was sometime during the year when I decided I would become the kind of man that Bill Dufford was born to be. I wanted to be the type of man that a whole town could respect and honor and fall in love with—the way Beaufort did when Bill Dufford came to town to teach and shape and turn its children into the best citizens they could be.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

Pat Conroy
“Generally, writers descend from a lesser tribe, and whatever claim to beauty we have shows up on the printed page far more often than it does in our mirrors. Even as I writer these words I think of dozens off writers, both male and female, who make a mockery of this generalization. But comeliness among writers is rare enough to be noteworthy.”
Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

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